By on August 12, 2015

honda-s660-26-1

Honda may bring its small, two-seater S660 to the United States, Edmunds is reporting.

The car, which is much smaller than Mazda’s MX-5 Miata and categorized in Japan in the “kei” class, is powered there by a small, 660cc turbocharged three-cylinder.

In case you’re not picking up what I’m putting down: the S660 would be fantastically tiny on American roads.

The S660’s 90-inch wheelbase is 8 inches shorter than the new Smart ForFour and one inch shorter than a Miata’s.

According to the report, the S660 won’t be a direct competitor to the Miata, but it could have a bigger 1-liter, turbo 3-cylinder for the U.S. market, which produces 127 horsepower compared to the Mazda’s 155 hp.

“We’re looking at it intently for North America,” John Mendel, executive vice president of American Honda, told Edmunds. “We want some spice in the lineup.”

The tepid CR-Z doesn’t do much apparently, and the “Baby NSX” rumor could be true-ish (the S660 is mid-engined, after all).

Mendel added that the car would needed to be complemented with a somewhat sane business case — “It’s got to be commercially viable,” he said — but he should just dig in the Honda archives for that. Check under “S2000, Honda.” We’re sure it’s there.

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60 Comments on “Honda Reportedly Considering S660 for America, but Will Any of Us Fit in It?...”


  • avatar
    DevilsRotary86

    I don’t care:

    (Link is SFW, I swear under oath and penalty of having my eyes poked out by ravens)
    http://www.roflcat.com/images/cats/If_It_Fits_I_Sits.jpg

    The idea of driving this makes me smile ear to ear. I know I would be one fez away from joining the Shriners and I don’t care.

  • avatar
    VoGo

    So cute!

  • avatar
    Wscott97

    I like it. It looks like the Honda Del Sol and Toyota Paseo popped out a baby.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    At 6’6″, I don’t fit well into normal cars, so this wouldn’t even be a consideration. When I sit in a Gen 1 Miata, my eyes are level with the top of the windshield.

    I managed to squeeze into a family member’s S2000 a couple times just to take it for a spin. Those few minutes were worth the agony.

  • avatar
    probert

    please

  • avatar

    We used to have sports cars this size. MGB, Austin Healy, etc.

  • avatar
    RideHeight

    Please let it come and be the biggest surprise success since the Soul.

    Then maybe we could get kei vans! Wagon R!

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      I think the standard box-kei vehicles won’t come here for one simple reason: safety. They are simply not safe enough to pass US regs. Nor are they meant for high speed like our highways.

  • avatar
    smartascii

    The Fiat 500 has a 90.6″ wheelbase, and the Smart ForTwo has a 73.5″ wheelbase. The S660 is certainly a small car, but it’s not unprecedented or anything. I have no idea how they’d price it, but it starts around $15,300 in Japan before taxes. If it turns out to be offered here for anywhere near that, I can certainly see it being a 3rd/fun car for people who might not want to spend $25k on a Miata (or $60-120k on a Boxter).

  • avatar
    sirwired

    When I first saw “600cc” I was wondering who was smoking what, but with a 1L 3T, well, maybe it would have a chance.

    It would certainly be a niche vehicle, but with the right price, what an awesome little niche. It would be totally great if it was priced at a level that a young person could reasonably buy it as a 2nd car Just For Fun.

  • avatar
    MRF 95 T-Bird

    I’m 6’2″ and weight around 210lb. I have trouble fitting into and being comfortable in a Lotus Elise/Tesla Roadster. Yet I have no problem in a Miata, first gen MR2 (never was in the 2nd gen) or CRX. A MGB was fine fit though a Midget was a bit tight and the Fiat 124 was OK except the wheel position could have been more ergonomic. Like Goldilocks the S600 could be just right. Honda needs to be quirky again and bring this here pronto.

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      The CRX was actually kind of big on the inside, after all it was just a Civic with the back half missing. My brother had one in college and he was already over 6 foot at that point.

      Having a mid engine makes this S660 interesting and most likely a blast to drive, but the lack of any storage space is going to be a tough sell. Even a Miata holds enough luggage for a weekend get-a-way for two adults.

      Honestly I’d rather Honda bring back an updated S2000 back to battle the Miata outright. Or maybe just fix what is wrong with CR-Z: underpowered, over styled. In theory the CR-Z is the perfect car for my wife, yet she sat in one at the autoshow and immediately dismissed it due to horror show of an interior. Seriously it looks like a robot threw out in there… with random buttons and glowing blue/red screens tossed about. What happen to Honda’s once purposeful and simple interiors? My 89 Prelude Si was so perfect, even the mid 90s Hondas had a cohesive dash setup. Now? Ugh!

      • 0 avatar
        MRF 95 T-Bird

        Yes, a new version of the S2000 would be ideal. A better CR-Z with more of the soul of the CRX would find many buyers who would otherwise go for a Mini or 500, lack of rear seat notwithstanding. But a targa S660 would be a good fit for those who do not desire a droptop. Just a simple removable targa.

        The interiors of 80’s 90’s Hondas were some of the best most intuitive and cohesive around. Now they look like they took apart the Lost in Space robot.

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        “What happen to Honda’s once purposeful and simple interiors?”

        Agreed. It lasted beyond the mid-’90s — my 2004 TSX dash was perfect. Legible, simple, controls in the right place and with precise operation. Then they went styling-crazy just like you described.

        The good news is the current Accord and CR-V have toned things down a bit — I hope eventually they influence the rest of the lineup.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      You’re too big for the S600! It’s not for you! We have to keep in mind here that the OLD little tiny cars had room in them because there was no safety or seat padding or sound insulation or thick carpet or airbags or big wheel wells.

      New little tiny cars will have much -less- room inside due to those things.

  • avatar
    Chan

    Aside from the obvious horsepower issue, I don’t see how a Kei-class car can be made US-compliant without adding significant length and width (thus ruining the proportions) for the required crash structures. On top of that, Kei cars are designed to accommodate 5-foot-2 110-lb. Japanese people, not 6-foot 250-lb. Americans.

    American enthusiasts are looking for an S2000 replacement. The MX-5 and the 86 twins are great modern sports cars, but there is a market for a more expensive, higher-power alternative.

    • 0 avatar
      Power6

      Checking Wikipedia…avg male height japan 5’7 1/2″, US 5’9 1/2″. I worked with plenty of japanese guys over 6 feet tall when i used to work over there a lot. Seat width…now that is where americans differ we need those wide flat ones with no bolsters…

      • 0 avatar
        bd2

        Not uncommon to find 5’10”-6′ younger Japanese males these days (tho they tend to be shorter than South Korean and Northern Chinese males), but apparently, the younger gen isn’t too interested in the S660.

    • 0 avatar
      ccode81

      I wish this not to happen
      It’s obvious people in US call it overpriced, under power, too small car, Honda will react on next generation with an obsessed change that is not nimble any more.

  • avatar
    indi500fan

    Nice looking little buggy. I flinch when in proximity to 18 wheelers in my Miata. I’m sure this would be similar. It’s kind of like riding a motorcycle, you really need to be watchful.

  • avatar
    Kendahl

    There is a precedent for cars this size outside Japan. The S660 is about the same length as the late 1950s Austin Healey “bugeye” Sprite. The 1960s Lotus Elan was only a foot longer. The first generation Miata, which we consider very small, was almost a foot longer than the Elan.

    Since I suffer from seasonal pollen allergies and live in the ragweed capital of the world, I would need a coupe rather than a roadster. The idea of a pint-sized Porsche Cayman, with Honda reliability and maintenance costs, is appealing. If they can keep the weight under a ton, 127 hp from the 1 liter turbo should be adequate.

  • avatar
    brucebanner

    Just start making the S2000 again.

    • 0 avatar
      TMA1

      Yes. Don’t even update it. Just start putting them together like it was never killed off six years ago.

      It just depresses me when this stupid kei car is discussed as if it is a worthy heir to the S2K.

      • 0 avatar
        th009

        The S660 is not an S2000. But that doesn’t mean it’s not worthwhile.

        This might well get my wife to visit a Honda dealership yet.

        • 0 avatar
          TMA1

          It’s obviously not the same. Now, find me one article on the S660 that doesn’t mention the S2000, and you’ll see why it’s relevant to the discussion.

          • 0 avatar
            th009

            Do you want me to write one? We would not buy an S2000 (updated or as is), but we might consider an S660. So personally I don’t really care whether people like the S2000, I would prefer to consider the S660 purely on its own merits.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        You’re so right about the S2000. They’d sell all of them, STILL, even if it were the exact same. Though I’d prefer analogue gauges to the silly orange horizontal bar thing.

        • 0 avatar
          TMA1

          I see 2009 (last year) S2Ks with low miles selling at nearly MSRP. Costing more than a brand new loaded Miata.

          I don’t understand why Honda is just leaving this money on the table. People want that car, used values are through the roof. I see people asking for thousands more than what I paid for my Miata, for cars that are 5 years older and have 5-6 times the mileage. It’s crazy! Honda, go get a piece of that money!

  • avatar
    ...m...

    …can’t be much smaller than my elise, which serves perfectly well as a daily runabout…then again, the elise made our MX-5 the “big car” in our stable, at least until we added a mazda 2 for heavy cargo/passenger duty…

  • avatar
    Joss

    Gee some folks could lose their toupee in that thing. W.C. Fields flying overhead dropping empties on your head. It might fit in his plane. Remember that skit with scaled down T rolling out the plane with his topper protruding?

  • avatar
    Tosh

    Cannot ever happen, cuz physics. Honda will milk this drama until end of times. (Hurl)

  • avatar
    nickoo

    It would be like driving the world’s funnest go-cart. Make the darn thing into a spec racing series.

    I honestly doubt it will pass safety regulations and doubt it could be made street legal.

  • avatar
    VW16v

    Looks like Barbie has a new set of wheels coming to America. This should have been called the Honda Queefer.

  • avatar
    Big Al From 'Murica

    I’m throwing this in the midsize truck catagory. Many will say they will buy it but when it comes out they’ll find some detail they just can’t get past like “No BS, I was there at he Honda dealer, cash in hand but when I drove it the dead pedal was 1/8th of an ich too far to the left and that was a deal breaker. What I really want is a kei truck anyway”.

    • 0 avatar
      Undefinition

      This does seem to happen often when they bring foreign cars over to the US. They just don’t seem to appeal to American tastes. Look at the great, practical MPVs the Japanese get to drive. When they try to bring one over to the US, Americans pass them by in favor of SUVs and barge-sized minivans. Like small cars are a threat to Americans’ masculinity.

  • avatar
    dwford

    Build it! It doesn’t have to be super fast, but it can’t be slow, maybe 0-60 in around 7 seconds. And it would be great if the 1.0T had a nice 8000rpm redline. Imagine bombing around in this tiny car. Sounds fun to me!

  • avatar
    dal20402

    I’m 5’10” and, unfortunately, 205 rather than the 175 or so I should be. But I’d squeeze my Dad Bod ass into this in a heartbeat. This is the first thing that’s REALLY made me want a toy car in awhile. Do it, Honda. Make me make stupid financial decisions.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      LOL, you’d get into it from your LS and it would be like the hallway in Willy Wonka.

      WHAT’S HAPPENING HERE!?

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        That was exactly my thought! The contrast would be fantastic.

        • 0 avatar
          CoreyDL

          Lol, last weekend my sister and her bf rode with me to head to dinner. He was sitting in the back behind her in the passenger seat. She’s used to her Kia Forte sedan, and an old little Tucson. She gets in and immediately goes

          “Oh do you need me to scoot up a few inches!? I have room up here!”

          I look back there, and he has like 6″ at least between his knee and the seat, as he’s probably 5’9″.

          I’m like “No, there’s room for EVERYBODY!”

          Silly small car worries.

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            I had that same experience a few times in the G8. The LS is even a bit roomier than the G8 (shorter trunk, longer cabin), so I’m sure it will keep happening. I can’t even imagine how people would react to riding in the back seat of a LS L.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    I’m a fan! I’d fit in it, and leave the roof on most the time, but I would enjoy having t-top like removable apparatus.

  • avatar
    stuki

    I honestly hope they’ll bring it over lock, stock and barrel. In all it’s 63 HP glory. I’ll buy it. Put a deposit down on announcement, even. Fly to Japan to take delivery, and leave plenty of recently valuable again US dollars at their ever expanding parade of Michelin rated eateries, too….

    As fun, and comparatively practical, as the Miata might be; for urban driving, which is really the only place in America any Kei makes much sense, the 3 cylinder Geo metro is just much more properly powered than even the Mazda. It soothes the soul to be gunning it everywhere you go. And, urban driving consisting of being stuck behind idiots anyway, it’s much less frustrating to be so in a vehicle that doesn’t make it so plain obvious how slow everyone in your way is actually going.

  • avatar
    honda_lawn_art

    I like it and all, but how can anyone afford the payments if you can’t use it as an Uber car?

  • avatar
    smalleyxb122

    Next year, it becomes legal to import first year Honda Beats into the US, so Honda’s biggest competition will be Honda.

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