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Saturday, September 16, 2006

Honda S2000

The Honda S2000 is a roadster manufactured by Honda Motor Company since April 1999. The car was created to celebrate the company's 50th anniversary, and continues in the tradition of lightweight roadster "S" cars such as the S600 and S800. Like previous S cars, the name of the S2000 comes from its engine displacement of approximately 2000 cc (although Honda would later introduce a 2200 cc model, retaining the S2000 name). From its inception in 1999 to 2003, S2000s were manufactured at Honda's Tochigi plant. S2000s since then have been manufactured at the Suzuka plant.

Design and Construction
Continuing in the tradition of its predecessors, the S2000 is rear wheel driven, with power being delivered via a Torsen limited slip differential mated to a six-speed manual transmission.

The car is constructed using an X-bone monocoque frame which is extremely rigid, thus improving handling, road noise, and steering feel and feedback. Other features include double wishbone suspension, electronically-assisted steering, integrated roll hoops and an electrically powered canvas top that takes 6 seconds to operate, touted as the fastest opening top among all convertibles

The car was originally launched in 1999 as a 2000 model, and was sold through to 2002. It featured 16" wheels with Bridgestone Potenza S-02 tyres.

The 2001 model saw new rear spring rates and modified rear dampers. 2002 featured another revised suspension set up and the introduction of a glass rear windscreen, replacing the plastic one featured in cars built from 1999. It maintained the same looks on the outside and the same wheels.

The 2004 model introduced newly designed 17" wheels and Bridgestone RE-050 tyres along with a retuned suspension that reduced the car's tendency to oversteer. The spring rates and shock absorber damping were altered and the suspension geometry modified to improve stability, by causing toe-in under cornering loads. In addition, cosmetic changes were made to the exterior with new front and rear bumpers, revised headlight assemblies, new LED tail-lights, and oval-tipped exhausts. The 2.0 L engine was also revised, with its redline reduced to 8,200 rpm. At the same time, Honda introduced a 2.2 L variant to the North American market.

The 2006 model introduced a drive by wire throttle and a Vehicle Stability Assist system. Interior changes included revised seats, additional stereo speakers integrated into the headrests, and additional headrest padding where previous seats had helmet depressions and screens. The 2.2 L engine was also introduced to the Japanese market during this time.

The 2007 model remains unchanged except for two exterior colors that are dropped, Suzuka Blue and Sebring Silver. Grand Prix White is available with a black/red interior for 2007.