Honda OSM concept at 2008 British Motor Show – Click above for high-res image gallery
Rumors have swirled for some time that Honda has been looking to revive its diminutive Beat. The Japanese Domestic Market kei car was produced from 1991 through 1996, and featured a tiny 650cc (that's 40 cubic inches to us 'Muricans) three-cylinder engine that produced 63 horsepower (Japan's power cap for the kei class). The engine was mounted in the middle, and sent all that fury to the rear wheels. Combine that powertrain layout with the droptop, and two passengers could have a lot of fun for short money. Now, we're once again hearing rumblings that Honda is readying a Beat for a new generation.
According to AutoExpress, Honda is working on a new Beat that will utilize technology found in some of the company's motorcycle offerings. The Beat would shift gears by way of a dual-clutch transmission, which would be a first in a Honda car. The cogswapper, borrowed from a VFR1200F, could be mated to a 1.3 or 1.5-liter i-VTEC four-cylinder engine.
The rumor mongers also tell us that the Honda Beat could ride on the same platform as the CR-Z. The body length would be chopped down, and with a reduction in front and rear overhangs, the car could somewhat resemble the OSM concept shown in London back in 2008.