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2004 Honda S2000

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2004 Honda S2000 Review

Among the best sports cars sold in America.

Reviewed by Automotive on

Overview

The 2004 Honda S2000 is a two-seat roadster based on a concept car originally shown at the 1995 Tokyo Motor Show. It uses a rear-drive configuration and is a lot of fun to drive. Since it stems from a concept car, it contains a lot of new technology not usually available on less expensive models.

Honda's S2000 roadster enjoys a reputation as a high-performance sports car with individual styling that makes it stand out from the crowd. In fact, it feels a little like driving a racecar rather than a normal sports car, and its competition includes the Porsche Boxster, the Audi TT, the BMW Z3, and the Nissan 350Z. It suits anyone looking for something a little different from the run-of-the-mill sports cars available today, and its agile handling and minimalist design make it very desirable.

The Range

Body Styles: roadster
Engines: 2.2-liter four-cylinder
Transmissions: six-speed manual
Models: Honda S2000

What's New

A number of changes and enhancements come into effect for the 2004 Honda S2000 roadster. Most significantly, the engine upgrades to a 2.2-liter alongside a revised transmission gearing to improve the delivery of power. Other additions include larger 17-inch wheels, updated suspension tuning, larger tailpipes, restyled bumpers on both the front and rear, new taillights and headlights, upgraded brakes, and a better center console that has a storage tray and two cup holders. Also, a seat belt reminder system has been added to all of the Honda cars.

Exterior

The Honda S2000 has a distinctive exterior roadster style that comes in various body paint colors and with a few excellent standard features. The base equipment includes 17-inch alloy wheels, a power convertible roof, intermittent wipers, and a rear defogger. The exterior looks angular and wedge-shaped, but still very appealing and eye-catching.

Interior

The 2004 Honda S2000 has one base model that includes air-conditioning, a leather steering wheel, an interior air filtration system, alloy and leather trim on the shift knob, cruise control, a tilt-adjustable steering wheel, remote power door locks, power mirrors, a four-speaker stereo with an in-dash CD player, and xenon high intensity discharge headlights. The center console has two cup holders and a storage tray. All of these cars come with leather seating. The power-operated convertible roof proves very easy-to-use and has a rear glass window with a defroster, and Honda provides a molded cover for the top, as well.

The two-seater’s cabin is not very big at all, and it actually suffers from a distinct lack of storage space with just a small bin in between the net door-panel storage pockets and doors. The trunk has a storage capacity of just five cubic feet, and this car only seats two people. The leather-trimmed bucket seats hug you comfortably, and the car provides reasonable shoulder room and elbow room. The instrument panel is a joy to behold and looks like one from a racecar.

Performance & Handling

The Honda S2000 contains a 2.2-liter, four-cylinder, dual-overhead-cam, VTEC engine that produces 240 hp and 162 lb-ft of torque. It pairs with a manual six-speed transmission. It has double wishbone front and rear suspension and four-wheel independent suspension. It accelerates from zero to 60 mph in under six seconds. EPA fuel economy rates at 18/23 mpg city/highway and 20 mpg combined.

The Honda S2000 is very much a driver's car, and those who love driving revel in its responsive handling. It has a very rigid chassis, and the wishbone suspension gains inspiration from the racetrack. The steering remains extremely responsive, partially due to the S2000 using an electrically assisted system rather than the normal hydraulic-powered steering system. It makes cornering a joy. However, the suspension feels sports-car stiff and it doesn’t offer the most comfortable ride, or the quietest, but it might just be the most fun. Just don't plan for any long weekends away unless you can travel light.

Safety

Safety features include four-wheel ABS, front-integrated headrests, and front seat belt pretensioners. Government crash tests give the Honda S2000 four out of five stars for passenger and driver protection and five stars for side-impact, front protection. The Honda S2000 achieves five stars for rollover protection. Honda designs the car to absorb as much energy as possible from any collisions.

EPA Fuel Economy

Honda S2000: 18/23 mpg city/highway

You'll Like

  • Powerful engine
  • Hardtop option
  • Agile chassis
  • Uncluttered design
  • Great performance

You Won't Like

  • Lacking a bit in low-end torque
  • No cut-off switch for passenger airbags

Sum Up

Among the best sports cars sold in America.

If You Like This Vehicle

  • Mercedes-Benz E-Class
  • Mazda MX-5 Miata
  • Nissan 370Z
  • Audi S5
  • Lexus IS 350-C
  • BMW 3 Series
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