As you’ve probably heard by now, there are Rumors FLYING across the internet about Honda celebrating it’s 70th birthday by gifting itself (totally narcissistic, I mean who gives themselves a birthday gift? Psh), a brand new Honda S2000. Of course, after the rumors started flying, the internet lost it’s collective shit and started hucking around all sorts of unwarranted clamoring for a new Honda sports car. CoughCivicTypeRcough.
Credit where credit is due, the Type R is bound to be a phenomenal car, but it’s not an S2000 so, and I hate to say it, I get it. The S2000 was a world beater and one of the most highly sought after cars to ever come out of Japan. And that’s saying a lot given the automotive history of that country. And so, the rumors will never die, but even given it’s history I believe that Honda will never again make an S2000. Here’s why.
1) Rumors do not make companies want to produce cars
No matter how hard we beg, plead, or offer despicable acts to get, car companies will do whatever they damn well please. Why? Because they are the ones making all the money and they make money as their business. It’s incredibly hard to justify a car that you’d sell less than 5000 of, per year, especially to the corporate heads of a company like Honda. Which produces the Civic. Which outsells entire other car companies year after year.
2) Other journals talking about it won’t help
I love Car and Driver. I have been reading their musings on the auto world since I could ever read and write my name in broken English, backwards letters and all. But their assessment of this seems overly optimistic.
Talk of a new Honda sports car will not die. Although we now know that the tiny S660 roadster will not come to America, and a speculated mid-engine sports car positioned below the Acura NSX is probably not happening, the prospect of a reborn S2000 roadster is gaining steam. And it could arrive in 2018, as the company’s present to itself for its 70th anniversary.
There’s a certain symmetry to that, considering that Honda first launched the S2000 in 1998, to celebrate its 50th anniversary. For the 70th, we could be looking at both a new car and a commemorative two-wheeler, as well. “Based on the company’s MotoGP contender, the bike will be a detuned, roadgoing version of the RC213V-S,” says our source. “As for the car, expect something special. Size-wise, it’ll be similar to the Mazda MX-5 Miata, but the Honda will have a lot more power.”
Skeptics may note that Honda does not have a platform for a compact, rear-wheel-drive sports car. But our insider tells us to not overlook what the company has done with its S660 mini-coupe and the all-new NSX supercar. “Both those coupes have unique, dedicated platforms, right?” he says. Spot on.
The source also says that the R&D staff at the Ohio facility are already working on it. I don’t buy it. Given Honda’s recent history with not bringing sports cars to America (Civic Type R for soooooo so long and the NSX debacle that took nearly a decade), and S2000 is something that isn’t going to prove Honda’s engineering prowess unless they start from the ground up. Sure they have dedicated platforms for the S660 and the NSX, but look at what’s happening across the industry. Honda needs cross platform integration for something like this to make fiscal sense and the number crunchers aren’t about to throw money at something this close to the NSX unveiling. They’re still drying their tears with empty money satchels.
3) It grows the legend
Why even make a new one? You’ve made a legendary car. It has legendary stories. It’s not to the level of early 911s or GTRs, but that’s even better. It was a short run. Let it ride out and it could be one of the most sought after cars in all of automotive history. Go ahead, call me insane, but that might happen.
The S2000 was an incredible car and letting that legend grow would only make it more intriguing. Making Honda’s name live on forever in the annals of history. Your welcome for those chills down your spine.
4) It’s too late
It’s also possible that Honda missed the boat on this. With so many other car companies producing such ridiculous performance machines right now, Honda may have just said F-it internally. They may just want to focus on the newly minted NSX, the Type R, and the S660. Honda doesn’t do rash things. They do highly calculated things. A new S2000, even by year 2020 seems hasty for them.
5) They can’t even do it
This seems the most far fetched, but is it possible that Honda is stretched too thin? The NSX ate up so much time and money and energy. Is it possible that Honda just doesn’t want to make another sports car in the foreseeable future? Maybe. It’s not like Honda is hurting for money, but in a world where the bottom line counts, an S2000 just doesn’t seem to be in the cards. So, I just cannot see them doing it. Concept cars are nice and words are nice too, but until something is prototyped, it’s all just fluff.
I’ll tell you one thing though, I actually hope the DO make it. I don’t see it happening, but in an age where performance cars are thriving, the world won’t hurt with another RWD Japanese sports car. It’d be a better place, that’s for sure.
(Source: Car and Driver)