Car review - Honda S2000

LeVeL

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I think a supercharged would be much better for it, seeing as its got nothing in the low and mid ranges
 

stevanford1

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Turbo S2000 would be full of WIN. TBH i really don't see the point of a supercharger. Yes you do have power down low but where are you going to need power that low in the rev range ? On a race track it's all about mid range/top end power (depends on the track) and at a drag strip its all about top end power.
 

frankiess

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Turbo S2000 would be full of WIN. TBH i really don't see the point of a supercharger. Yes you do have power down low but where are you going to need power that low in the rev range ? On a race track it's all about mid range/top end power (depends on the track) and at a drag strip its all about top end power.
Everyday use gets easier when the power is more accessible, that's what I was getting at.
 

LeVeL

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Yeah, the s2k is fine for racing, because like you said you're always in the higher rev ranges, but on the street the s2000 is pretty poor, I'd say, because below 6000rpm there is pretty much nothing
 

ahgogo

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Dug up an S2000 dyno graph:



Looks like I was right on the money with the 6000rpm figure. As you can see, torque is low throughout the whole rev range, and power spikes up around 6k when the cam profile switches. That's where the car starts moving. A flatter hp curve and a higher torque curve would make the motor great, imo. It'd be a very nice drive.
I don't know where you found this dyno graph. Is it from an AP1? Is the engine well maintained? Here is one with a current AP2 sold in Japan (officially)

You got a steady and constant climb of power and that's what my JDM S2000 (I live in Japan) feels like.

The electric power steering, which still works even if the engine is off, can be easily turned with one finger.
Mine requires muscles to turn when the key is turned and engine off and it nicely weighted when I drive.

Thinking back to when I drove a Miata last, I think it was more fun than the S2000.
I suppose fun is subjective. I had a Mazda Roadster (Miata MX-5 elsewhere) before S2000. There is no comparison. The S2000 is faster, much faster, better in power delivery. The biggest difference between the 2 is how it shifts. And the S is world class while Roadster still lot of fun.

I can report that the ride is relatively harsh.
I agree. Go and sit on the car and rock it a little, the suspension won't even budge a bit.

This is not a very good daily driver or long distance cruiser.
A daily driver, yes. Long distance cruiser, no. It's not meant to be a GT.

The S2000 is not a good daily driver but neither is it a hardcore autocross warrior.
How did you draw this conclusion before driving it more than once or autocrossing it?

not an all-out driver's car.
not as much as a Lotus or a Caterham, but still pretty damn serious.

I'm 5'10" and found it pretty darn snug
I'm 5'9(1/2)" and I have room to spare. Are you wider than you're tall?

on the street the s2000 is pretty poor, I'd say, because below 6000rpm there is pretty much nothing
Don't drive a poorly-maintained S2000 AP1 and complain about it being a poor road car. If what you said is true that there is nothing below 6000rpm, all you have to do is to keep it above that.

Bottom line you can't complain about it not being a driver's car and at the same time are too lazy to shift. You can only claim one or the other. S2K wants to be driven. If you're tired of shifting it and keeping it on high end rev then what you're looking for ISN'T a driver's car.

I don't mean to be harsh but I am more than a little irritated by your analysis. I know you're entitled to your opinions but I want to provide a different view, as a person who drives it everyday to and from work. Thanks.

Edit: spell check
 
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LeVeL

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I don't know where you found this dyno graph. Is it from an AP1? Is the engine well maintained? Here is one with a current AP2 sold in Japan (officially)
--snip--
You got a steady and constant climb of power and that's what my JDM S2000 (I live in Japan) feels like.
I drove a USDM AP1. Reading comprehension has clearly failed you here, seeing as I specified that it was an MY2000 car. That dyno graph is something that I dug up through Google but the power switch at 6k is very apparent when you drive the car.


Mine requires muscles to turn when the key is turned and engine off and it nicely weighted when I drive.
I'm just providing my observations. If you find it hard to turn the wheel then maybe you should hit the gym ;)


I suppose fun is subjective. I had a Mazda Roadster (Miata MX-5 elsewhere) before S2000. There is no comparison. The S2000 is faster, much faster, better in power delivery. The biggest difference between the 2 is how it shifts. And the S is world class while Roadster still lot of fun.
Again, I'm just providing my opinion. I found the Miata to be more fun on the street.


A daily driver, yes. Long distance cruiser, no. It's not meant to be a GT.
I didn't say that it was a GT. Once again, I was simply providing my personal observations and opinions.


How did you draw this conclusion before driving it more than once or autocrossing it?
It was just a speculation. I didn't say that it was a fact. Now that I've autocrossed I realize that I was wrong in my original hypothesis.


not as much as a Lotus or a Caterham, but still pretty damn serious.
I suppose it's all relative.


I'm 5'9(1/2)" and I have room to spare. Are you wider than you're tall?
I'm 150lbs. I was obviously not cramped in the S2000, but, like I said, there wasn't a lot of room.


Don't drive a poorly-maintained S2000 AP1 and complain about it being a poor road car. If what you said is true that there is nothing below 6000rpm, all you have to do is to keep it above that.
Fyi, the S2000 I drove had 42k miles and maintained exceptionally well. The previous owner never even drove it in the rain. The underside was sparkling clean. Also, "keep it above 6000rpm" is not very useful advice when starting from a standstill. THE S2000 IS A POOR ROAD CAR.


Bottom line you can't complain about it not being a driver's car and at the same time are too lazy to shift. You can only claim one or the other. S2K wants to be driven. If you're tired of shifting it and keeping it on high end rev then what you're looking for ISN'T a driver's car.
When did I say I was too lazy to shift? Or didn't want to shift? Or didn't like to shift? Or was too tired to shift? And what does shifting have to do with anything being a driver's car? Do you mean to say that a driver's car can't have a torquey motor?


I don't mean to be harsh but I am more than a little irritated by your analysis. I know you're entitled to your opinions but I want to provide a different view, as a person who drives it everyday to and from work. Thanks.
If you want to provide your opinion, go ahead and do so. There is no need to belittle my personal observations and opinions. Besides, if you like your car then why do you give a damn about what I think about it?
 

Mark355

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Also, "keep it above 6000rpm" is not very useful advice when starting from a standstill. THE S2000 IS A POOR ROAD CAR.
Why? Because it's not a torque slut? It's a four cylinder that revs to 9k. I've only ever driven my car on the street and "poor" is not a word I would use to describe it.

Get a 350Z or Z4 if you want torque off the line--this is not what the s2k is about.
 

LeVeL

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err.... you guys are missing the point here. I wasn't really bitching about the lack of low-end torque - just merely stating the fact and also that said lack of torque was annoying to me on the street. In my personal opinion the S2000 is a relatively poor road car. You can agree or disagree, seeing as not everyone shares this opinion. All I did was list my likes and dislikes about the car. If you can't take criticism about your car then I don't really want to hear it. No car is perfect, meaning that there are some downsides to every single car.
 

ahgogo

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First of all, I respect your opinions. I only disagree with them. I know we're, or at least I am, defensive. Because it's such an excellent car for the price range. Saying it "a poor road car" is almost like baiting for an argument.

You keep saying that they're merely your opinions/observation so when I state mine I'm belittling you? You said we can agree or disagree so please let me disagree, respectfully.

Having a word fight on an Internet forum is futile. Let's agree we disagree and move on. I really didn't mean to be so unappreciative of your review. My apologies.

edit: wording
 
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LeVeL

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First of all, I respect your opinions. I only disagree with them. I know we're, or at least I am, defensive. Because it's such an excellent car for the price range. Saying it "a poor road car" is almost like baiting for an argument.

You keep saying that they're merely your opinions/observation so when I state mine I'm belittling you? You said we can agree or disagree so please let me disagree, respectfully.

Having a word fight on an Internet forum is futile. Let's agree we disagree and move on. I really didn't mean to be so unappreciative of your review. My apologies.

edit: wording
Well said. Your original post just came off a little pushy, that's all. No hard feelings :)
 

minnie_m

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Took my friend's recently-acquired S2000 out today. Its a 2000 with 42k on the clock; black with red interior.

First things first - getting in is a bit tricky (as is getting out) since the car is low, the seats are narrow, the roof is low, the door sill is high, and since your legs are almost straight when seated its a bit challenging (even compared to his old CRX) to sit down, as you have to stick your feet way out in front of you and under the dash. Once in I was comfortable but there wasn't any room to move about. The door is right up against your elbow and the transmission tunnel is fairly high - good to rest your right arm on though. The tech dash is cool. I didn't think I'd like it, but its pretty nice actually.

Naturally, I couldn't start it for 20 seconds untul I remembered that it has a start button. The electric power steering, which still works even if the engine is off, can be easily turned with one finger. The shifter is great - nice and notchy, just the way I like it, and the throw is short and precise. Below 5-6000rpm the S2000 feels no faster than my Accord. Its more responsive, sure, since it doesn't take the time to shift on its own, but certainly not quick. Once vtec kicks in (yo!) it becomes a quick little car but, once again, I wasn't impressed. Even after driving a 150hp Accord, I was far from blown away. The engine is pretty quiet and you have to look at the tach a lot, since it sounds pretty much the same at 7000rpm as it does at 9000. The powerband is short but it does wake the car up a bit. As I said though, I expected it to be faster.

I didn't get a chance to drive it anywhere near the limit, as I was on the street, but I can report that the ride is relatively harsh. This is not a very good daily driver or long distance cruiser. The steering is a lot quicker than in the Accord, naturally, but also compared to almost all cars that I've driven, and offers a decent amount of feedback (once again, I wasn't exactly blown away). The handling limit is definitely higher than in my car, although at the speeds that I was driving at I bet its mostly down to the tires - summer performance vs all-seasons. Pulling up at a red light was a reminder of just how small the car is - I'm 5'10" and the driver's seat has been lowered with new brackets (my friend is 6'7") and I still had to duck down to see the light. My buddy reported after a recent autocross that the car is really snappy at the limit and doesn't really give out warning signs before sliding.

The S2000 is not a good daily driver but neither is it a hardcore autocross warrior. Its nice to putter around town hitting vtec when the popo aren't looking, and I'm sure it would be a lot of fun on a back road, but I walked away feeling like its nothing more than a weekend toy - not a daily driver and not an all-out driver's car. A wider powerband, more power and torque, and a little more room inside (like I said, I'm 5'10" and found it pretty darn snug) would make the S2000 pretty awesome.
The review is appreciative. However, it would be better to include its engine specifications and performance.
 

bone

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yeah, with the big range of engines available in the S2K, it's really hard to know which one he's talking about :rolleyes:
 

LeVeL

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The review is appreciative. However, it would be better to include its engine specifications and performance.
What bone said. And I think you meant "appreciated".

Also, you might want to read the entire thread...
 

mitchell.scott

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The only way a S2000 can be considered a poor road car is if the Rubicon Trail is your commute to work, otherwise I think it's a great machine. I feel lucky to be able to drive one pretty much whenever I want. Sure, the ride is on the stiff side, sure the engine noise is a bit raucous, the seats are a bit on the thin side, and the interior is cramped, but the shifter is world-class, the engine revs in a way that reminds me of a 430, and it's fan as heck to make every on-ramp your drag strip. As a car it's simply brilliant. If it was your daily driver, it could get old, but then again, if this doesn't appeal to you, you should be driving a 5-series anyway.
 
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equiraptor

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if this doesn't appeal to you, you should be driving a 5-series anyway.
The S2000 doesn't appeal to me. However, that doesn't mean I belong in a 5-series. I don't like the bathtub feel of the S2000 - I want doors and a dash that's lower. The high revs don't appeal to me (they don't turn me off, either, it's just neither a plus nor a minus). I hate the digital dash.

I love 911s. I love Miatas. I like Exiges - love them on the track, but am unsure about daily driving one. There are some specific things I dislike about the S2000 that, given the available competition, means I'd choose a different vehicle in that basic class/from that basic group. It's a great car, it's just not the roadster for me.
 
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