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Honda S2000



  • sphinx99sphinx99 Posts: 776
    I've done a few 4-5 hour trips in an '04 S, as Detroit-Chicago is one of my routines :)

    It works. The car itself handles such trips without issues. The seating is comfortable. I do find my legs getting restless after a few hours, but I'm not sure that's something I'd feel in any other car and it's easily cured by occasional rest stops (to stretch) which I'd do no matter what I was driving. The only other potential issue is engine noise, there's a real drone to 4,000rpm for four or five hours. Again, though, the effect can be mitigated by dropping the top, taking breaks, using the stereo, etc.

    Short answer: I've made many trips in an '04 S and don't feel worse for it.
  • wh9wh9 Posts: 32
    Thanks for the reply. I have another question. How is the paint holding up on the front end where all the bugs and road grit hit the bumper? I currently have an Infiniti G35 sedan and had to have the clear bra installed. Nissan's paint seems to be soft etc. Looking at getting a S2000. I do a lot of road trips due to business from 2-5 hrs at the most. After that I fly. I'm about 6'2". Love the S2000 and how it drives and feels. Wondering how I would like the S2000 versus the G35 sedan and all the leg room I have. Also I'm in the negotiating phase with the dealer to get them off the sticker price and start at invoice. Thanks for any input you can give me.
  • carlikercarliker Posts: 285
    I don't know if your question was intended for sphinx, but I'll go ahead and give my opinion. With any vehicle, I use a product called Astroshield twice a year to keep rocks or grime from ruining the paint job. At this point, the formula red paint job of the '04 S2000 I have has really held up well (and in all areas).

    I don't like using the bras on my vehicles for a few reasons. Some, not all, scratch the finish and leave marks worse than what they are suppose to protect. Also, no matter what the quality of the bra, the sun will slightly change the color of any vehicle so when you take the bra off, you'll have two different colors. You mentioned that you had a clear one. Maybe that looks better since it's clear, but I definitely don't like the black ones. I want to see the front of my car. It's like hiding a beautiful woman's face with a zorro mask.

    As for the S2000 versus what you have now, it really depends on what you need. The S2000 obviously has more power and is much much more fun to drive not to mention it's a convertible. Since you take longer road trips, it really depends on how sensitive you are and how much you can adapt. I'm 5'10, but if I was of your heighth, sitting in a roadster for close to 5 hours could be pretty tiring. However, what driving experience doesn't get tiring after 5 hours? Just take breaks if you drive the S2000 every couple of hours.

    Working your way up from invoice is fine, but I always see people whether in this thread or of another commenting how they got something at invoice or a couple hundred over. What they don't say is the higher interest rate they have to pay, their down payment, trade-in, insurance, other hidden dealer costs, etc. These dealers have know how to make bottom lines look attractive, when in fact, the actual financing could be telling a different story.
  • sphinx99sphinx99 Posts: 776
    My car currently has about 15k miles on it, and the paint has held up well. Better than other Hondas that I have had. I drive about 1-2 hours freeway traffic (sometimes congested) each day, plus the occasional longer trip.

    I'm also 6'2. I don't really have a problem with legroom. A surprising thing about the S is how much legroom I have. A lot of sedans I've been in don't feel as roomy for my longer legs - I'm sitting upright, higher, whereas the S2000 really does fit me well. I assume it's the fact that the S does not have to give up space for rear seat passengers, so the front seat occupants get the full benefit of leg room.

    A nice thing about the car is that it holds up. You can take a 5 hour trip in it, and it'll do that trip like the Civic next door, no sweat. But it's a two-seat convertible sports car with great looks, HIDs, etc. There aren't many such cars that double as effortless high mileage daily drivers. After 15k miles and not ONE squeak or rattle (amazing) this car feels like it's going to hold up for 100k or more.
  • wh9wh9 Posts: 32
    Thanks for the info sphinx and carliker your info was of great help.
  • topper1topper1 Posts: 2
    Have been looking hard at buying an 04 or 05 S2K. Have not driven a car that really made me smile since buying my 1969 GTO and the smiles are long overdue. All the press I read is excellent on the S2K and have had many honda products in the family all good experiences. I live in Houston, TX and commute about 33 miles one way to my office. I recently saw a comment on the S2K that stated "you don't want to drive it in the rain." I find that hard to believe but with Houston having annual rainfall amounts of 3-4 feet, I wanted to get some feedback. Anybody with experiences to share good or bad? Also would value opinions on S2K as daily driver.
  • sphinx99sphinx99 Posts: 776
    I don't see a problem. Basically, it comes down to the tires. IMO, I find the RE050s that are stock with MY04 to be pretty good rain tires. Do not take my word for it, check some other S2000 forums on the net with a larger audience and ask the question, as I don't have a lot of experience with "good" rain tires so what I'm considering safe may actually be dangerous.

    In rain the tires have some grip and track straight. Because it's expensive and I'm not 100% certain of the tires' rain ability, I do drive more slowly in standing water, that said I have been able to drive 40-50mph on the highway in fairly heavy rain without the car feeling squirrely.

    Snow is a completely separate issue, the stock tires are not great on extremely cold pavement, and they become completely useless with even the slightest dusting of snow. Driving the car in the snow, without alternate tires, is extremely hazardous to your health. Don't do it.

    Daily driver: mine's a daily driver for 15k miles now and zero complaints. The MY04 makes for a better daily driver than previous years, IMO, which kind of makes up for the lowered redline as far as I'm concerned. It's reliable, fun, fairly fuel-efficient and well-equipped like any good daily driver should be. Biggest impediments to daily drivability are,
    - if you're going out with more than one other person, the S has to stay home
    - storage isn't good so it's helpful to have a friend, family member, etc., in case you need to transport stuff
    - sports car suspension means that the car is a lot less fun if your commute has bad roads
    - the car is reliable, but you eat through tires quickly and scheduled service seems a bit more expensive, so expect to pay a "cost of ownership" premium in proportion with the cost of the car: not outrageous but not super cheap either.
  • titantitan Posts: 16
    Here is a question I've posed to myself for a year now. If one has $35K to dispose on a secondary car, what serious options would be considered? My list has always included new S2000, used '02/'03 Boxster, '04 350Z Touring, '03/'04 Z4 w/ SMG. Value and performance on the S2K is certainly hard to beat. Thoughts on these vehicles and opinions on purchase? Thanks.
  • wh9wh9 Posts: 32
    Other than the tire replacement, what else do you find that is a bit more expensive regarding scheduled sservice?
  • radiateradiate Posts: 8
    i was in that position about a year and a half ago. all things considered, i opted for a g 35 coupe 6mt which may serve as a reasonable comparison to the 350z. i found the g35 a bit too much of a touring car. too heavy, not a high enough redline and i missed the top down fun. a month ago, i sold the car and found myself looking again. i considered all of the others that you mentioned. the boxster is looking a bit dated now. additionally, i drove one and found that it was less appealing than i thought it would be. the z4 is too funny looking and carries the stigma of the old z3 which is it is a woman's car. no offense intended. i finally drove a 2004 s2000. i drove it with some apprehension as many of the car magazines knocked it's daily driveability. they said not enough torque and too high strung of an engine. the 2004 improvements went a long way to address those gripes. i ended up getting a suzuka blue one and couldn't be happier. it is, IMHO, the clear winner of the fun to drive cars mentioned in your post.
  • sphinx99sphinx99 Posts: 776
    The tires are the biggest cost. Fuel economy isn't great if you're driving the car reasonably hard, and I just seem to find the interval dealer service (i.e. 15k mile service) being more expensive than other cars I've owned. There's also a lot more upkeep if you're fanatical about keeping the car looking good: shin etsu grease for all the rubber seals, regular doses of 303 Aerospace Protectant for the top, etc.

    My first set of RE050s bit the dust around 11k miles (rears) and were a solid $500 to purchase and mount.
  • titantitan Posts: 16
    Thanks, my friend. Classic comment on the old Z3 for it really was a chick car- weak in almost all categories. Each time I have test driven an '04 S2K, I have been unable to push the engine beyond 6K revs. I hae the feeling the engine is really coming alive at this point. Cockpit seems a little noisy from revs but I dig that and it- the cockpit- is damn nice. Tight fit and ergonomics at the fingertips. My only purchase hesitation has been the panach of the Porsche vs. owning Honda. Ironically enough, my family has always driven Honda since I can remember. Thanks, Radiate for the comments as you are making my decision easier.

    Does anyone have a decent website that supplies wheels for the '04 S2K? Love the car but Honda could have provided much sportier more aggressive 17's.
  • topper1topper1 Posts: 2
    Thanks for the rainy day advice and opinion on use as daily driver. I appreciate your taking the time.
  • I have decided to buy a 2005 S2000 New Formula Red in Novmeber 2004. I looked around at lots of cars and have had lots of cars and this looks like the best for me.

    I live in Houston and it will be a daily driver, a lot of days with the top down on my 25 commute to work.

    Power, performance, handling, braking, reliability, slickest 6-speed available.


  • carlikercarliker Posts: 285
    titan - Please do not let the Porsche namesake keep you from buying an S2000. The worst reason to select a car is based on "panache". Not intending to be mean, but that just sounds snobbish and ignorant. The S2000 performs better, out accelerates even the Boxster S, and Car & Driver even believed the interior (such as the steering wheel) was of better quality than of the Porsche. Too many people are set on the names of Porsche and BMW and willing to sacrifice the performance just to say they have one. This is complete nonsense to me since other higher-end Porsche/BMW owners probably mock the lower end owners anyway.

    About the tires, anything could be better, but I don't see the slightest thing wrong with the 17 inch tires Honda put on the S2000. Why do they need to be anymore aggressive and sportier? The car performs quite well and handles better than any other roadster (near its class) with the tires it currently has. Not one article out of the hundred I've read about this car has commented about the tires needing to improve.

    midnightcowboy - I currently have a formula red '04 S2000. I think the red and suzuka blue are a lot more unique on the road than the two silver shades. The black, white and yellow are two that I don't see as much either. The '05s are going to be out in September I believe. It will be interesting to see what Honda is going to be doing after that.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 64,749
    are an advantage... In fact, the car was just fine on the 16" it had prior to '04. Have you seen the price of 18" tires? The biggest drawback to the S2000 tires is the rate of treadwear.

    I personally would rather have an '03 Z4 3.0, but that is just a personal preference. It is nice to have choices like that.



    Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • titantitan Posts: 16
    No doubt the S2000 performs better than a regular Boxster, but when it comes to the "S" version, I have reservations that the S2K is out accelerating that car. In the end, both the Boxster and Honda are great cars. One clearly could not go wrong with either selection. For many months now I have found the Honda to be of great value and fine craftsmanship. My only hold up on the Honda is I despise the wheels so there goes another $2K out of pocket expense and the passenger side airbag cannot be cut off. That's lame when you have small kids and want to toy around with them in this car. Brings me back to an earlier questions and that is: anyone know of a solid website for wheels?

    Any reports on a new color for '05?

    Does anyone know of a dealership that has a silverstone w/ red interior?
  • carlikercarliker Posts: 285
    I still have no idea why anyone would despise the stock Honda wheels. Do you want 18" tires, new rims, "never die" ultra tread? What's the deal? The tread may wear, but that's the case with most sports cars. There is NO reason to spend $2K on new tires. I haven't put enough miles on mine to determine any long-term tread issues, but there isn't any other vehicle that handles better near the price. Obviously, a lot of that has to do with the tires Honda chose. The Lotus Elise ($8K-$10K more) doesn't even have 18" tires (17" on rear, 16" on front). At least Honda tires don't have the 350Z problems.

    The Honda S2000 DOES out accelerate the Porshe Boxster S. If you enter 2004 Porsche Boxster S acceleration times in a search engine, you'll find out that it goes 0 to 60 in 5.7 seconds. The 2004 Honda S2000 accelerates to 60 in 5.4-5.5 seconds according to two separate Car & Driver articles (among others I've read). The regular Boxster only goes to 60 in 6.4 seconds. The S2000 just doesn't break as well as the
    Boxster S.

    Finally, this vehicle wasn't made to drive kids around. It's a ride for sports car enthusiasts. Who cares about a cut off switch when a small kid shouldn't be in the passenger seat anyway? Go buy an SUV or a sports sedan for that. An intelligent economic decision is hardly "lame".

    Most dealerships carry silverstone with either red or black interior. It's a common color so it shouldn't be difficult to find at a dealership near you.
  • sphinx99sphinx99 Posts: 776 has wheels and tires. I do understand that the S2000 as a funky offset which significantly limits the choices. eBay has a smattering of wheels, too.

    I like the '04 rims, which fill out the look of the car nicely. Granted, some people would prefer a more BMW-style or Corvette-Style look. Just not me.
  • The Netscape home page today lists a survey of the most expensive to insure cars under $40K. The S2000 tied the Mustang GT Convertible as most expensive to insure with an average cost of $2,363/yr. The survey was done by Runzheimer International.

    $2,363 seems awfully high to me for this car. What are you owners paying?
  • carlikercarliker Posts: 285
    I checked out that article about insurance. I don't know about sphinx and other S2000 owners here, but I pay nowhere near that amount. I'll be paying $823.20 this year (little less if I paid it all at once). Of course, I have a clean driving record, no accidents, own a house, and I'm 28 (over the 25 mark). If I was only married, it would be even cheaper...well, that's fine. Also, some states people live in just cost people more to insure their vehicles.

    The numbers in that article should be taken with a GIANT grain of salt (especially for the S2000). Obviously, any fast (and/or convertible) vehicle is going to be more expensive to insure if there is a younger driver or even a younger driver in the household that can get their hands on the keys. The cars in the list are also vehicles typically tuned (except for the Sebring??) Actually, I'd be more concerned about the less expensive cars with higher rates. The Mustang is $5000 less than the S2000, but costs the same to insure. The Celica is $10,000 less, but just $200 less to insure and it's not even a convertible. The Dodge Neon SRT and the Honda Civic cost of insurance to car price ratio is extremely high as well. Neither are convertibles and both are $13K less than the S2K, but almost the same to insure. Except for the VW Passat W8 which is a sedan, the S2000 is the only $30K+ on the list. The article doesn't make a mention of that. I also like how the article eliminates several brands just because of the "high class" brand name as if none of those would be a surprise. What is the point in doing that when those brands have vehicles under $30K too? I guess some people are surprised that Honda even has a vehicle over $30K, so why wouldn't they be surprised that it costs a little more to insure?
  • titantitan Posts: 16
    Earth to Carliker, come in. This is Reality calling. There is no stock S2000 on this planet that will do 5.4 in the 60. Please reference the article- or as you say- the numerous ones telling this story b/c I have obviously been reading the wrong journals. That time is a 911/Vette time, not a Honda time. If you are banging out those times, then you'll be receiving a call shortly from Ferrari as a replacement driver for Schumacher. The S2000 is an awesome car with a quick agile engine that, what do you know, does provides two seats for, hey here's a thought, actually driving with a person in the passenger seat. Albiet an adult or a 7 yr old, I would think that is why Honda put an extra seat in the car in the first place. Scan the pages of previous posts and you'll quickly see I am not alone in wishing Honda had a cut-off switch for this exact reason.

    Furthermore, wheels are wheels and tires are tires. I am interested in optional 17" rims. The tires are fine. Good rims will run you $2K.

    Still cannot find a silver w/ red.
  • dariodario Posts: 1
    I own a 2001 S2K, I have taken it on several trips from Delray Beach, FL to Orlando, FL which is about 250 miles. I am 5'7" 155lbs., and experienced minor aches and pains from the trip. I attribute this to the seats (supportive but not cushioned to luxury standards) and limited elbow room. I offer this information in comparison to the other vehicle we have taken on same trips.(luxury sports car) But I consider this a puny price to pay for what it gives me in return (adrenaline rush, sensory rewards, handling, feelings, etc.) Hope this helps you.

  • sphinx99sphinx99 Posts: 776
    I don't think 5.4 is unreasonable at all. Based on real-world results at over the years, that seems to be towards the lower-end of times, but still within reason. Just like Vette/911 territory is more like upper 4s, not 5.4. (If a 3000lb 350hp torquey fat-tired V8 Corvette couldn't break 5.4 0-60s, it wouldn't sell so well!)
  • sphinx99sphinx99 Posts: 776
    "Earth to Carliker, come in. This is Reality calling. There is no stock S2000 on this planet that will do 5.4 in the 60. Please reference the article- or as you say- the numerous ones telling this story b/c I have obviously been reading the wrong journals. That time is a 911/Vette time, not a Honda time." _id=8202&page_number=5
  • titantitan Posts: 16
    Sphinx99, I respect your posts from the various and numerous intelligent ones you've made, but the article link you provided draws reference to the Elise's time of 5.5 in the 60- not Honda's. Bottom line is the S2k is quick- very quick and engineered almost perfectly. IMO, there is just no way a stock S2K is clipping 5.4 or lower.
  • radiateradiate Posts: 8
    That Car and Driver article referenced a 0-60 mph time of 5.5 seconds for the Honda "The Honda’s acceleration looked a little tepid compared with the much lighter Elise—60 in 5.5 seconds". the lotus' time on the last page of the article states "the Elise can scoot: 4.4 seconds to 60 mph". it is poorly worded regarding the honda, but it seems clear when reading about the lotus, that the 5.5 refers to the honda.
  • Thanks for the response Carliker. I'm sure my premium would be much lower also due to my driving record, age, etc. I was just surprised to see an S2000 as most costly to insure for cars under 40K.
    I've been eyeing an S2000 that is listed in a local paper. 02, less than 10k miles for $23,500. Verrrry tempting!
  • carlikercarliker Posts: 285
    Here is another link to an article that Car & Driver did that makes it clear to everyone (hopefully) about the 5.4 - 5.5 second time. And, titan, please read more carefully. _id=7274&page_number=2

    This is what the car is able to do which doesn't mean every driver could pull it off. I thought that would go without saying, but obviously it didn't. Every 0 to 60 time is solely the potential a car has depending on how good the driver is. Some cars have a larger margin of error for driver skill than the S2000, as well.

    clint - That does sound like a tempting deal, with low mileage and the first version of the S2K that comes with rear window. Your insurance would obviously be lower too on the '02.
  • carlikercarliker Posts: 285
    Usually when people say "wheels", they mean "tires" . When they mean "rims", they say "rims". Out of all the things to spend money on, one would think the Honda stock rims are fine enough (and to most, they easily are) to save $2K. Your two reasons that are making you hesitate from getting an S2K are the rims and the lack of panache a Honda has? Are you kidding me?! C'mon...please. Sounds rather superficial. At least the cut-off switch is a safety concern...even though I still go with what I said earlier. If a person gets a smaller vehicle, not to mention a roadster, you are sacrificing a lot of safety anyway. The passenger seat WASN'T INTENDED for little kids...otherwise, Honda would have put a cut-off switch like they do in their other "family" vehicles. Since it was unnecessary, again for cost reasons, it didn't make much sense to include it in the vehicle. But, thanks for explaining to me why there is a passenger seat. Mind boggling. Geez!
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