s2ki.com... we feel your pain
Honda has just announced that after 2009 the S2000 will no longer be produced. First launched in 1999 as a 2000 model, the S2000 has only received one major minor update since then. In 2004 the AP2 model replaced the AP1 and brought with it a few minor changes. Most significantly the new S2000 received a slightly larger 2.2-liter four-cylinder engine which produced 237hp but at a noticeably lower 7800 rpm (as opposed to the 8300 rpm max power level of the AP1). The redline was also reduced from 9000 to 8000 rpm. In 2007 the 2008 S2000 CR (or Club Racer) was unveiled, much to the disappointment to the S2000 faithful.
The S2000 was the car that forced the German sportscar manufacturers to take a good look at their products. After the S2000 introduced auto journalists (and then the world) to what unadulterated driving enjoyment is all about companies like Porsche, BMW and Audi were forced to return to the drawing board. Arguably, we can thank Honda for how good the current Boxster, Z4 and TT are.
The S2000 (aka, the Miata on steroids) also ushered in an era of Japanese sportscars, like the Nissan 350Z, Mazda RX-8 and Toyota.. oh wait… forget about Toyota.
Honda sold just 2,538 S2000′s in December, down from 4,302 in 2007. In total 110,000 of the little roadsters made it to market. Interestingly, Honda seemed to force the S2000 down the NSX’s path by never offering owners a new model all the while driving up prices.
At least we know the top-up/top-down debate will rage on at s2ki.com for all eternity.
In this eulogy we’re compelled to point out that when the S2000 came out it laid claim to having an engine with the most horsepower per displacement of any naturally aspireated engine (120hp per liter of displacement). This rating actually made Honda’s little 240hp four-banger a more sophisticated piece of machinery than the exotic powerplants coming out of factories in Germany and Italy.
Official (depressing) release after the jump: