Honda's lineup of sporty vehicles could expand as the automaker celebrates its 75th anniversary. In a recent interview with Autocar, Tom Gardner, Honda Motor Europe's Senior Vice President, hinted at such a possibility, suggesting that we might get a successor to the iconic S2000 sports car and that it could break cover sometime in 2023.
Gardner iterated that the new-generation Civic Type R has been quite popular with customers. He said that the brand loves a good sports car. "We love performance, and we're very grateful for the strong reaction we've had to the latest Type R," he told the publication. Sadly, Gardner didn't reveal much about a potential new sporty model, only hinting at the possibility.
Gallery: 2006 Honda S2000
He told the publication to "Watch this space," adding that Honda launched the S2000 as a way to celebrate the brand's 50th anniversary. It should do something special for the 75th, but we're biased. We’re also not product planners.
This isn't the first time we've heard murmurings about a new Honda sports car. In late 2020, a rumour surfaced alleging that the automaker was considering reviving the S2000. How convenient. The insider alleged that the new model would have similar proportions to the original two-door, with Honda engineers keeping the weight under 1,500 kilograms by using aluminium and carbon fibre. It'd also allegedly use the Civic Type R engine, which produces 315 bhp in the new model.
That sounds amazing, but it contradicts earlier claims made by other members of the company. Two years before the 2020 rumours, Hayato Mori, the automaker's senior manager for product planning in Canada, said that research indicated a lack of interest in reviving the sports car. In 2017, CEO Takahiro Hachigo said, "It's not time yet" to reinvent the S2000. Things might have changed inside Honda since then, and the time to revive it is now.
While a revived S2000 would be quite exciting, Honda could have other plans to honour its 75th anniversary. The automaker ended NSX production last November, kicking off the countdown to the launch of its successor. The model will likely return in some form, moving beyond its potent hybrid powertrain to a full battery-electric one.