NEWS: Honda S660 confirmed for 2015

426s_Honda S660

Honda has greenlit the S660 roadster, shown at the Tokyo Motor Show last year, for production. The mid-engined kei sports car will begin rolling off the assembly lines in 2015.

Honda S660 rear

Fifteen years after the S2000′s debut and 51 years after that of the original S500, a revived S-Series is welcome news, but in reality the S660 hews most closely to another mid-engined Honda kei car, the 1991 Beat.

Honda BeatThe soon-to-be-nostalgic Beat was the last car to be approved by they company’s visionary founder, Soichiro Honda, before he passed away in 1991. Not only will the S660 serve as a great tribute, but in fact the same factory that built the Beat, Yachiyo Industries in Mie Prefecture, has been tapped to build the S660 as well. The Honda affiliate factory currently constructs Life 5-doors, Vamos van and Acty trucks and has been building kei cars since the 1972 Life StepVan.

The 1990s were a heyday of sporty kei cars, having spawned everything from the gull-winged Mazda Autozam AZ-1 to the RWD Suzuki Cappuccino to the original 1991-96 Beat. Daihatsu recently announced production plans for a new Copen, so perhaps a kei sports comeback is nigh.

 

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9 Responses to NEWS: Honda S660 confirmed for 2015

  1. Randy said:

    Oh, alright; I’ll go first…

    Any chance this is coming stateside before the Martians arrive? (Guess what I got on the tube right now.)

  2. Tony said:

    Cool to see a new sporty car from Honda but really I would rather have a coupe version of the old s2000… With the Obama cafe standards changed for the near future I really think sport compact cars will make a comeback. Power does not look to be drastically improved but not bad… This thing with a midrear could be fun but personally I would rather see the new civic type r come stateside and Honda could keep this until they figure out how to bring us a S2000 coupe

    • Randy said:

      I think with a slight reconfiguring that could be “couped.” Being a concept car, a few things will change, of course…

      (. . . BUT THE GRILLE IS STAYIN’! ) :-)

  3. RainMeister said:

    What is it with Honda designers infatuation with truck-like grilles? I thought it was a disease contained to it’s SoCal design center, but perhaps not.

    Why can’t they do something this beautiful?

    http://www.designboom.com/technology/pininfarina-alfa-romeo-2uettottanta-set-for-production-in-2015/

    • Randy said:

      Probably something to do with pedestrian safety standards. Wouldn’t need ‘em if they’d lift their eyes from their phones…(Person gets hit by car while watching video of person getting hit by car while watching video…)

      That Alfa is a stunner, but I don’t think it’d see production as-is, either, for the same reason, and, although I can’t say for sure, it seems that there are some laws about where the headlights are located on a car…

      Hey, what if the black grille slats were made body color?

      Or, when/if you can get one, take out the slats, put in black mesh, and those light-up teeth! Shark, alligator, or vampire? With the way the quarters come up like a cape, or wing, I’d go vampire.

  4. Dave said:

    I LOVE kei sports cars, and the Beat is one of my favorites. (Actually, they’re all my favorites.) A kei sports car resurgence would be awesome! But sadly we in the US might not benefit from it (tho I do recall rumors of a 4-cylinder version for us). Still, having something called the *S660* in the Honda lineup somewhere is a pretty cool thing. And we’ll just have to import old AZ-1s and Cappuccinos when the time comes =P

  5. Wayne Thomas said:

    I saw this at the Tokyo Motor Show, but I am yet to get confirmation on whether or not this car will be FF or MR. If it is to be a Beat for the 21st century, then it’ll have to be MR.

    Speaking of the Beat, here is a thought for people to ponder…

    Honda Beat + 1100cc motorcycle engine with sequential mission=total win.

    • Randy said:

      Stupid question that’s been buggin’ me for years:

      Why NOT put a motorcycle engine in a small car? My old Metro would have been an absolute SCREAMER with a v-twin… Probably wouldn’t hurt the gas mileage, either, or for the little hit, it would be SO worth it.

      Emissions can be cleaned up with tuning and catalysts, so why not?

      Anybody remember a Plasma “catalytic convertor” back in the ’90s? I saw an ad ONCE, but that was it. It ran some ridiculous voltage through the unit, that they claimed burned off everything.

  6. Mike Pristave said:

    hopefully they still plan the S1000 american version.