If you’re like us, there are lots of modern classics that we wish we could have bought new. Oh, to be able to go back in time and plunk down a deposit on a brand-new Acura Integra Type R, BMW 1M coupe, or Honda S2000. Fortunately, Barrett-Jackson has the next best thing at its 2019 Las Vegas auction, where a 2008 Honda S2000 with just over 2,000 miles (yes, two thousand) will cross the block without a reserve price. That means the highest bidder, no matter the bid, is taking home a sweet VTEC-powered roadster that’s nearly new.
When the Honda S2000 launched for the 2000 model year, the roadster market in the U.S. was white hot. The Miata had been a mainstay for a decade by then, and the overwhelming success of the relatively new and upscale BMW Z3, Mercedes SLK, and Porsche Boxster were proving that people of means were still willing to plunk down a fair bit of cash on a car that was a weekend toy in most cases. The Honda S2000 helped fill the gap between a Miata and a Boxster by offering a well-trimmed, serious sports car at a price that more enthusiasts could afford.
Early cars through 2003 were known as AP1 models and were famous for their 2.0-liter VTEC inline-four engine that ran to a heady 8,000-rpm redline (though the fuel system didn’t cut out until 9,000 rpm). In 2004, the AP2 series took over with a longer-stroke 2.2-liter four and a reduced 8,000-rpm redline. Power remained the same at 237 horsepower but torque increased incrementally to 162 lb-ft. These later series cars also received new 17-inch wheels, a revised suspension that reduced the nervous on-limit behavior many AP1 owners experienced, some structural rigidity improvements, and a cosmetic refresh with new bumpers, headlights, and exhaust tips. Production ended in 2009 after nearly 67,000 S2000s were sold in the U.S.
So how does a 2008 AP2 S2000 just sit for over a decade, with just over 2,000 miles on its odometer? This particular car was owned by Honda and kept in its Ohio heritage collection. Last year, Honda decided to raffle it off to its employees and the lucky winner took home what is essentially a brand-new S2000, right down to the tires and factory car cover. After a year with its first owner outside of Honda, it’s being sold at Barrett-Jackson.
These ultra-low-mileage cars often present a dilemma for their owners who know that each additional mile on the odometer means lower value when it comes time to resell, as well as a risk of picking up damage that would compromise the car’s originality. As such, it’s likely that a collector who intends to keep this S2000 on mostly static display will snap this one up. Let’s hope the lucky seller will use at least part of the proceeds to find a well-kept S2000 that can be enjoyed on the road without guilt. This S2000 is scheduled to be auctioned on Friday, October 3, so be sure to follow along with live coverage on MotorTrend Network.
The 12th annual Barrett-Jackson Las Vegas sale roars into Sin City with more than 650 collector cars October 3-5, 2019, at the Mandalay Bay Casino and Resort. Every lot this year will be offered with no reserve, so you can expect excitement to be high as both bidders and sellers roll the dice on some of the world’s finest collector cars. The experts from MotorTrend will be there to bring you all the action LIVE from the auction block, so be sure to download the app for exclusive, live coverage!