Honda will develop a two-seat compact roadster considered to be the successor of models like the Beat and the S800. Previous rumors suggested that the new Beat will be an open-top version of the hybrid CR-Z, but it turns out those rumors weren’t true. The new model will be built on an entirely new platform, will feature a mid-engine configuration, and a rear wheel drive system. Of course it will be offered at a very competitive price.
Produced from May 1991 to February 1996, the old Beat was a model offered exclusively on the Japanese market (where the car qualified for large tax and regulations discounts), however, the new model will be offered all over the world.
The old-generation Beat was powered by a 656 cc engine with a maximum output of 63 HP. However, for the new model Honda will opt for a bigger engine because "sales of the new model are not limited this time just to the domestic market."
The new Beat is expected to go on sale in both Europe and America by the end of 2014.
Honda Beat was a rear mid-engined two-seat roadster car produced from 1991 to 1996. And how small cars will be the future Honda has plans to build a successor for it. In the latest number of the Japanese magazine Best Car there is an article about the future car, but how Japanese is not our language we will only speculate.
If the Beat does come back, it will likely share the platform of Honda’s other current kei cars, the Life and the Zest. This means it would be a front-engined car with either front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive.
Japan has some interesting rules that allows for cars extremely small cars with small engines (63 hp max) to qualify for large tax and regulations discounts. These lightweight “kei” cars produced some very interesting offspring, including the Honda Beat of the 1990s. With its go-fast looks, mid-engine/rear-wheel drive design, and roadster body, the Beat was like a Toyota MR2 that got shrunk in the wash.
It’s been thirteen years since the last Beat was made, but now Honda may be looking to get back in the business of small car fun for the 2011 model year. If the Beat does come back, it will likely share the platform of Honda’s other current kei cars, the Life and the Zest. This means it would be a front-engined car with either front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. So while it may not be everything the original Beat was, the OSM-inspired styling will still be a more attractive alternative to Daihatsu’s Copen.