NEXT VERSION: Honda S660 Concept pays homage to S600/S800, Beat

Honda S660 Concept Tokyo Motor Show 04

The Honda S660 Concept is set to debut at the Tokyo Motor Show late next month. The name recalls the S500/S600/S800 of the 1960s, the first use of the S-Series name since the demise of the S2000 in 2009. In theory, at least.

Honda S660 Concept Tokyo Motor Show 05

In practice, however, the open-top car is more like the mid-engined 1991 Honda Beat, launched in the same year Soichiro Honda passed and a car the founder considered his “baby”.

Honda S660 Concept Tokyo Motor Show 01

The original S-Series was also intended to be a kei car. Honda unveiled an S360 at the 1962 Tokyo Motor Show, but by the time the S-Series hit production Soichiro Honda decided that they needed larger displacements to compete internationally. You can see a replica of it in our 2011 New Year Meeting coverage.

Honda S660 Concept Tokyo Motor Show 03

At the time, the kei displacement limit was just 360cc, and the S500 and S600 were 500cc and 600cc respectively, disqualifying them. Plus, their physical dimensions exceeded strict kei guidelines and the original S-Series cars were all front-engined, rear-wheel-drive as well.

Honda S660 Concept Tokyo Motor Show 06

Since then, however, kei displacements and dimensions have increased, and now the engine size cap is 660cc. As the name implies, the S660′s displacement will be 660cc, giving the sub-2000 pound car a rating of 67hp. That puts it just within kei car territory, just like the Beat. Get ready for some midship amusement!

Images courtesy of Honda.

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8 Responses to NEXT VERSION: Honda S660 Concept pays homage to S600/S800, Beat

  1. Tofuik said:

    Besides the typical crazy concept car wheels its everything I’ve ever wanted out a modernized Honda Beat.

  2. Dave said:

    Wow! This is quite promising, hope it makes it to production. Definitely the most desirable Honda thing I’ve seen in a while. And of course we’re not gonna get it here in the US ‘cuz it’s a kei car. But still, glad to see something cool and fun out of Honda again.

    • Steve said:

      Dave said:
      “And of course we’re not gonna get it here in the US ‘cuz it’s a kei car”

      Why did you have to go and depress everybody?

      Then again, kei cars never made it to the U.S. because we were still on a kick about big powerful cars at the time. With the popularity of cars like the Smart and Iq we might get enough people to support its importation!
      *crosses fingers*

  3. Dave said:

    …wait, this is just the gas-powered EVster. This’ll probably actually get produced then.

  4. Bonzi Lon said:

    I can see this in my garage of the future sitting next to my future Nissan Figaro. :)

    Bonzi Lon

  5. dankan said:

    There are also rumours of a 1.0 litre version for international sale. If that makes it to North America I am willing to trade my wife for one. If they make a coupe then swap “willing” for “intend to”…

  6. miatadon said:

    Guess I am too traditional, but that thing doesn’t even look like a car. It’s butt ugly. But if Honda makes it, it will probably drive great, get good mileage, and seldom break down.

  7. Tyler said:

    Do want. Hopefully we get them.

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