Hooniverse Couldawouldashoulda Weekend – For the Price of a Honda CR-Z You Could Have This Honda S2000!

Continuing with our Hooniverse Couldawouldashoulda Weekend extravaganza, hosted by yours truly… I thought I would take things up a notch with a Honda vs Honda comparison, so let’s get started. The Honda CR-Z Sport Hybrid had been a bitter disappointment to the enthusiast community for a few reasons. Yes, it looks like an updated CRX, one of the most beloved of Hondas, and everyone was looking to the CR-Z as a “Green”, but still exciting successor to that little bombshell. It isn’t, and by a long shot. If your still inclined to get a somewhat sporty 2 seat Honda, and want to spend only around $19,300, you could get your own CR-Z, and slowly kill yourself in the process…. Or, you could go out and purchase this 2000 Honda S2000 Roadster for less money, get almost the same fuel economy, and experience open air driving. So, which would you choose?

Left to its own, the CR-Z is a pretty slick car, with a proper manual transmission, and a great little 1.5L engine from the Honda Fit (Jazz outside of North America). The biggest problem is when you start remembering the CRX in which this car is suppose to be the spiritual successor to, that’s when its clear that it isn’t all that sporty, nor all that fuel efficient. It look like crap as well…..

The Honda S2000 first premiered at the 1995 Tokyo Auto Show to celebrate Honda’s 50 years of auto manufacturing. While not setting the world on fire as far as sales, this Honda was a credible competitor to the BMW Z3, and the Porsche Boxster when it hit the North American Market in late 1999. The engine was a screamer, and this was a proper rear-wheel drive chassis, with a near 50-50 weight distribution. Early S2000 models were rather firm in their ride, but they made for great track cars. According to the listing:

Having just 3 meticulous owners from new, this car has traveled only 9,314 miles from new in excellent, virtually untouched condition throughout! All S2000’s came loaded with options including the 2.0L Inline 4 cylinder DOHC 16-valve VTEC producing an incredible 240hp and near 9,000 RPM redline, 6-speed manual transmission, limited slip differential, 4-wheel disc brakes with ABS, dual front airbags, keyless remote entry, alarm system, full leather trimmed interior including racing style seats & steering wheel, AM/FM/CD audio system with remote mounted controls, full power accessories including convertible top, xenon HID headlamps, cruise control, complete digital instrumentation, air conditioning with cabin air filter, 16” alloy wheels, dual exhaust, aluminum shift handle and foot pedals, and much, much more!

It will come complete with original window sticker, both sets of keys and key fobs, spare valet key, all owners manuals and guides, original purchase order, dealer checklist, radio security card, factory boot cover, and an additional car cover for storage!

If you want a fun to drive and sporty 2-seater from Honda, the CR-Z will be very disappointing for anyone who really likes to drive. However, you can own a world class Honda Sportscar, with less than 10,000 miles on the odometer, that will make you smile from here to eternity. When you reach the 9,000 RPM redline, your heart will also be racing right along with your engine. Try doing that in a hybrid! See the S2000 listing here.

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  1. tonyola Avatar

    It bothers me when a car that's as fun and entertaining as the S2000 gathers less than 1,000 miles per year especially after three owners. Is there something wrong with this picture? I'd want to have a Honda tech give this car a thorough checkout. While $19,000+ seems high for an 11-year-old S2000, later examples with more miles seem to be pushing $25K to $30K, so maybe the price isn't so bad after all. As far as the CRZ goes, I'll only say this – I owned a CRX for ten years. This ain't no CRX.

  2. fede6882 Avatar

    don't know if the price is right there (i live in uruguay), but i'd love to see and hear an atmospheric engine at 9000 rpm making 120hp/l… sadly there are no s2000 here.

    1. Thrashy Avatar

      For all the technical prowess invested in the S2000's F20C, it is not, unfortunately, all that nice to listen to. It's somewhat raspy and not nearly as smooth-sounding as the liter-bike motors that one might want to compare it to.

  3. Jennings R. Scroggs, Jr. Avatar
    Jennings R. Scroggs, Jr.

    If I had the scratch, and this car had the optional hard top, it'd be "hello, daily driver".

  4. Mechanically Inept Avatar
    Mechanically Inept

    That S2K is just gorgeous, but I'd have a higher-mileage, lower-priced one instead. Or a Boxster S.
    For the next comparison, how about a 4 cylinder Camry vs. an E39 M5? Or an Accord vs. an E46 M3?

  5. ZomBee Racer Avatar

    20 large would get me a whole stampede of Pintos.
    This is an awesome game though!

  6. Thrashy Avatar

    I guy I know is selling a same-year, 35k-ish miles S2000, plus three sets of wheels and two sets of autocross slicks, for a few grand less than that. Granted, his lacks the pimptastic red leather interior, but in all other respects is a much better value for money.
    I'm not adding a link because I'm hoping he doesn't sell it for a few more months. (Come on bank account, you can do it!)

  7. Tiller188 Avatar

    I maintain that the CR-Z is a car that just doesn't really have a purpose (or rather, it tries to serve a couple of purposes, and as a result sorta fails in each). The S2K, on the other hand, has a wonderfully singular purpose, and serves it well. No-brainer so far as I'm concerned, although I do wonder a little about 3 owners and less than 10k miles.

  8. coupeZ600 Avatar

    With two little ones, it's going to be a few years before I'm going to get the little lady to go for a two-seater, but the S2000 is high on the list if she won't go for the S600.
    Check out this image!
    "……completely disassembled and in boxes (for easier shipping!)…. and could one day look like this!"

  9. facelvega Avatar

    This comparison and the truck one are the only two that have much chance of being real alternatives someone might be considering, and these cases more than any of the others are no-brainers. However, both are rather loaded in that the new car in each case is an acknowledged dud. Will the long-promised Toyota/Subaru cheap sport coupe drive as well as an S2000? Probably not, but way better than a CR-Z I'm guessing.

  10. scoutdude Avatar

    This one is a no-brainer S2000 all the way. Fast, fun to drive, looks good, makes sweet sounds from its' exhaust. CR-Z not so much.

  11. Atomz Avatar

    If all S200's came with the "options" as stated in the ad how are they options?

  12. Jim-Bob Avatar

    S2000. There is NO WAY IN HELL you would ever find me in the embarrassing CR-Z. The S2000 is good enough on gas while managing to be one of the most entertaining products Honda has ever produced. The CR-Z is a hybrid that gets poor fuel economy and would likely have had similar MPG numbers without the hybrid system. It's greenwashing at it's worst and is simply too big to be a real spiritual successor to the original CR-X

  13. Mr. Smee Avatar
    Mr. Smee

    I'm kinda-sorta shoulda-coulda-ing. Instead of buying a brand new compact car, I bought a ten-year-old Lexus.

  14. Sales Geek Avatar
    Sales Geek

    Sheesh, guys. This isn't even close. Anybody that's driven a 1990's Honda VTECH engine could tell you the right choice here. Those engines just sang. Solid as a rock, faster than a speeding bullet and more joy than the Hallelujah Chorus. All wrapped up in the sweet sports car lite body.
    Or you could suddenly develop a case of the stupids and go for the lumpy, bastardized CR-Z. The product of pure marketing with that vague "two-door Toytota Venza wannabe" styling with a drive train that nobody loves. Duh.

  15. LV2DRV Avatar

    Imagine my surprise when I stumbled across this page that is showing all these nice pictures of the S2000 that I drove to work today. I bought the car from the St. Louis Car Museum, which took the pictures you are showing. I agree with those of you who would pick the S2000 over the CR-Z.
    Also, in reply to tonyola, it turns out that the previous owners just kept in garaged and only drove it on really nice days. It is still like new, with only 13K miles. I don't drive it all that often, but, when I do, I drive it like I mean it!

  16. Daniel Frank Avatar
    Daniel Frank

    I’m quite happy with the CR-Z. The performance is dreadful, but not so dreadful that you can’t have fun. And it’s exclusive, seeing as everyone seems to judge on figures alone and so there’s not a chance in hell anyone else will bother getting one, but if you go beyond the figures and actually bother driving the CR-Z, you’ll find it’s actually a very good car. I’m not surprised most people think it’s a dud, but I’m equally unsurprised that most people who’ve reviewed the car (i.e. DRIVEN it) have really liked it. Having 58 lbs/ft. of electric torque from zero rpm certainly makes a difference, the steering feels excellent, and thanks to 60/40 weight distribution (ideal for FWD) and the fact that it weighs a couple of hundred pounds less than the S2000 the cornering is brilliant. I agree that it desperately needs more power, but the CR-Z has won me over so much in every other respect that I’m happy to spend the effort (and time, and money) to tune it. With any luck I’ll be able to swap the more powerful IMA and double-clutch gearbox from the 2016 CR-Z, and that with a bit of forced induction (or a LOT of forced induction) should work wonders in solving the CR-Z’s ‘slow’ factor (this set up with 11 psi of boost should yield a little over 290whp). To each their own.