[home][rumors and news][model release matrix][dealer network][desktop calendar][exhaust notes][tov forums][links][search][sponsors][garage][login]

Tire Rack Upgrade Garage
 Search for a Dealer:
 Canadian Flag US Flag
 Honda Acura
 ZIP  
Acura
There are currently no active Acura promotions
Honda
There are currently no active Honda promotions
American Honda Reports Sales Figures for November 2017
More.......................
Road & Track dyno tests 9th gen Accord V6 MT vs 2018 Accord 2.0T 10AT
More.......................
2018 Acura RLX Arrives in Showrooms with Striking Redesign
More.......................
American Honda Reports Sales Figures for October 2017
More.......................
Second-Generation NSX “Dream Project” by ScienceofSpeed to Debut at SEMA
More.......................
Honda Reveals their Sports EV Concept
More.......................
Watch Live: Honda Reveals their Sports EV Concept at the Tokyo Motor Show
More.......................
American Honda reports strong sales numbers for September 2017
More.......................
General Talk --> Re: 2018 Honda Clarity Plugin Reviews
Join Discussion......
General Talk --> Re: Honda's future HEV lineup
Join Discussion......
Audio & Electronics --> Re: iOS 11 breaks just about all Bluetooth Functionality, 2013-15 Accord
Join Discussion......
Today's Reading Links --> Re: The Tesla semi truck is pure fantasy. Look at the numbers
Join Discussion......
Accord --> Re: Drove the 2.0T EXL today
Join Discussion......
Today's Reading Links --> Re: New Company aims for Full-fledged Development of Hydrogen Recharging Station Network in Japan
Join Discussion......
Sales Experiences --> Re: Hi everyone!
Join Discussion......
General Talk --> Re: Hyundai/Kia and Subaru Dominate Safety Tests
Join Discussion......
Civic --> Re: Just purchased my 20th Honda product!
Join Discussion......
Today's Reading Links --> Re: Car and Driver 10 Best
Join Discussion......
General Talk --> Re: Proud new owner of...
Join Discussion......
Civic --> Re: Does Honda = Sony and Kia = Samsung
Join Discussion......
Civic --> Re: Civic Si, $199 lease offer
Join Discussion......
TSX --> Re: 2nd Gen TSX OEM Floor Mats
Join Discussion......
Photoshops --> Re: Sports Coupe Concept
Join Discussion......
Jump to:
article details
Author Jeff Palmer
Categories S2000
Create Date November 11, 2003 12:07
Last Update October 04, 2004 23:15
Introduction

A 2000 model S2000 has taken residence in my garage for over 4 years now, and it's maintained its status as my all-time favorite vehicle. Upon first hearing about the myriad changes in store for the 2004 model, I was optimistic but at the same time a little apprehensive about some of the upgrades. It seems that many other current S2000 owners feel the same way, or worse.

A number of vocal S2000 "purists" have adopted the stance that the '04 S2000 has been "dumbed down" or softened to the point that the spirit of the car has been compromised or ruined. For the most part, it seems that these conclusions have been reached without any actual experience with the car (sour grapes?). While this sort of thing (feature creep, bloatware) has happened all too often in the past (witness the progression of the lithe 240z to the boatlike 280ZX and 300ZX models), the S2000 seems to have escaped such a predicament.

On paper, the '04's suspension, transmission/differential, and chassis improvements are all intriguing, but for me the big question mark hovered over the new 2.2L motor. Specifically I was concerned by its reduced redline, shorter gearing, and no claimed benefit in power. If there's one thing I love about my S2000, it's the thrill of taching it up to 9000 rpms and hearing it wail. Would I be able to live with the reduced rev capacity?

During a visit to Japan last month, I had the opportunity to briefly drive a Japanese-market 2004 S2000, which supposedly shares all the changes with our car except for the 2.2L motor (due to stiff tax penalties for motors over 2000cc, they continue with the 2.0L motor). The venue was Honda's "winding road course" at the R&D facility in Tochigi (HGT). On the same course, I was also able to sample an NSX-R, Civic Type R, Integra Type R, Accord Euro R, and a standard NSX (somebody pinch me!). To be honest, I came away from that experience a little disappointed with the S2000. I knew the rear suspension had been softened, but on this tight and curvy course it felt way too soft, resulting in poor cornerning stability. This instability was further exaggerated by the addition of a 200+ lb passenger for one of my 2-lap sessions. The Type R cars were all rock solid on this same course (though the NSX and NSX-R were way too powerful), but the JDM S2000's rear never wanted to take a set through a turn, instead bounding back and forth on the bumpstops. Compounding the issue was my comical inability to shift left-handed. Time and time again I missed the 2-3 shift. Somewhere deep in my cortex I was apparently expecting a mirror image of the right-handed shifting pattern (with 1st being at the top right of the pattern, 6th at the bottom left), but of course the pattern is the same no matter which side of the car you sit. I never grew accustomed to shifting the car, so this lack of smoothness only amplified the soft rear damping.

Based on my brief experience in Japan, it would be an understatement to say I was anxious to drive the US model. Delivery times for getting a press car here in Atlanta were sketchy at best, so I arranged to have an '04 waiting for us in Los Angeles last week. We spent the subsequent 4 days putting the car through its paces on canyon runs, the dragstrip, skidpad, interstate, and even an autocross, clocking over 1000 miles on the car in the process. Fortunately, I found that my experience with the Japanese car would not be repeated with the US-market S2000. I'm not sure why, but perhaps there was a problem with the suspension on the particular JDM car I drove, or the suspension tuning is significantly different.

[Next Page]

reader's comments
Click Here to Submit Your Comments

Viewing Threshold (What is this?)

[fancy] [flat] [simple]
Date Thread Starter Thread
11-30-2003 12:36
'04 Civic Si TOV review???   (Score: 1, Normal)
djaaronk
11-29-2003 17:54
new 04   (Score: 1, Normal)
SPWRS33
11-13-2003 09:17
Wheres the TL Stuff????   (Score: 1, Normal)
vtechbrain
11-13-2003 11:15
Re: Wheres the TL Stuff????   (Score: 1, Normal)
JeffX
11-13-2003 11:31
Re: Wheres the TL Stuff????   (Score: 1, Normal)
vtechbrain
11-15-2003 21:09
Re: Wheres the TL Stuff????   (Score: 1, Normal)
djaaronk
11-13-2003 15:25
Fuel economy??   (Score: 1, Normal)
NSXman
11-13-2003 15:35
Re: Fuel economy??   (Score: 1, Normal)
JeffX
11-13-2003 13:35
Thanx..   (Score: 1, Normal)
RSX_UT
11-13-2003 15:29
Re: Thanx..   (Score: 1, Normal)
Richy_x
11-13-2003 09:01
loved hearing this part....   (Score: 1, Normal)
CivicGSiR
Jump to:
2018 Acura RLX PR Photo Gallery
Read Article....................
TOV First Drive: 2018 Honda Accord
Read Article....................
2018 Honda Accord Specifications and Features (FINAL)
Read Article....................
2018 Honda Accord Hybrid PR Photo Gallery
Read Article....................
2018 Accord Touring 2.0T PR Photo Gallery
Read Article....................
2018 Accord Touring 1.5T PR Photo Gallery
Read Article....................
Contact TOV | Submit Your Article | Submit Your Link | Advertise | TOV Shop | Events | Our Sponsors | TOV Archives
Copyright © 2017 Velocitech Inc. All information contained herein remains the property of Velocitech Inc.
The Temple of VTEC is not affiliated with American Honda Motor Co., Inc. TOV Policies and Guidelines - Credits - Privacy Policy