I had to replace my 1998 M3 coupe and agonized for months for anything else with such near perfect combination of sharp handling, power and decent fuel economy. There were many worthy considerations including the g35 coupe (too heavy), the Mazda Rx-8 (too soft), and even the Mini Cooper S (too cute). But just one test drive in the S2000 snapping through the gears and carving up corners with surgical precision and the choice was easy.
Handling, response, power, egronomics
Sound system, little more low end torque, more colors
First review was after owning for 5k miles. Current review is after two years. I can again confirm this was a smart purchase decision. Tire wear is always an issue with stock Bridgestone Potenza RE050's, but dry/wet grip is fanstastic. Also had the opportunity attent two open track days....well worth the money to get the experience. The S2000 handles fanstastically. Grin from ear to ear..can't wait to do it again. Criticisms: Rattling from convertible top latches; second gear grind early in life, seems to have gone away unless cold temps; passenger seatbelt rattles on door pannel/seat One last note: this car CAN be driven in the winter. Snow tires are a must and work great!
Convertible top operation is very quick; clutch take up is linear, steering is very direct without slop, brakes are very robust, love the HID headlamps and LED taillights. Love sitting 4 inches off the ground. Suspension tuning is great, lacks any signifcant body roll.
Interior rattles can annoy some, ingress/egress is difficult if you're tall (no prob for me!), buying tires gets expensive because of staggered F/R sizes, too much brake dust on front rotors (sprited driving and track days), definately needs a better stereo..more speakers, sub- woofer...something.
The car was purchased as my weekend fun car. I have a 96 accord Ex which is my daily driver. But when I get behind the wheel of this little pocket rocket, I just loose my mind. There isnt any other car I would consider on my S2K and I looked at the BMW Z4 as well as the Porsche Boxster but could compare to her.