2001 S2000 New Car Test Drive
If sports cars are the athletes of the automotive world, then the easiest way to characterize Honda's new S2000 roadster goes something like this: Imagine a Mazda Miata that's gone through an intense Olympic training regimen, emerging quicker, faster, and altogether more capable than anything in its class.
It's not much of a stretch, because the Miata and the new Honda are similar in size and basic concept: pure sports cars, front engine, rear-drive, drop-top, few frills. The difference is that Honda's new two-seater costs about a third again as much the Miata, and offers performance that makes its Mazda counterpart seem pretty tame -- the difference between a good high school athlete and an Olympian. In fact, the S2000's performance eclipses that of much more expensive rivals, including the BMW Z3 2.8 (from about $37,000), Mercedes-Benz SLK (from about $41,000), and the Porsche Boxster (from about $42,000).
From the purist's point of view, this new Honda represents one of the best sports car buys going, as well as an awe-inspiring technological statement by a company that has absolutely no peer in the realm of extracting big horsepower from small displacement engines.
When it goes on sale September 15, one model will be available for about $30,000.