Got Downforce?

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There are several ways to enhance the looks and performance of the S2000. Those seeking performance gains often tend to overlook the benefit conferred by aerodynamic parts or aero mods. Such modifications include parts such as a rear wing spoiler (sometimes called a GT Wing which comes standard on the CR and Type S models), front canards, front lip or splitters (sometimes made out of carbon fiber) and even as extreme as entire flat panel underbody covers. These modifications not only enhance the visual appeal of the S2000 to another level but are also functional as they enhance the front or rear grip of the car at speed. According to some data, the S2000 could theoretically generate around 80+ lbs of positive rear lift at higher speeds which points to the usefulness of such modifications, especially for the track enthusiast.

The GT wing or rear wing spoiler is either made from metal or from carbon fiber and is commonly available on the market by way of brands such as APR , M & M Honda and Voltex. Custom wing makers such as Kognition even customize a wing according to your requirements with CFD data to back up their products. A simplistic explanation of how the wing works might be that the wing is curved on the bottom thus forcing air to travel further and quicker below the wing thus drawing the middle wing section of the car downwards with force. Commonly mounted on the boot (although options to mount to the chassis are also available for the truly track focused cars), the wing acts to generate downforce to press down on the rear of the car and by increasing the load on the rear it delivers more traction.

Pictured above is a wing available in carbon fiber from Voltex with a relatively smooth profile which doesn’t penalize a similar-to-stock power level S2000 with high aerodynamic drag. A Gurney flap or wicker bill (the little flap seen in the picture on the top edge of the wing) is sometimes added on the trailing edge of the wing to increase downforce. The added stability provided by this item was immediately noticeable at legal highway speeds so there is no doubt of its effectiveness on track.


Another commonly used aerodynamic aid is the front spoiler which both looks great and delivers vital front traction to aid turn-in at high speeds on track. The picture below shows a product from APR which is made from carbon fiber. Here’s a simplistic explanation of how the splitter may work in a twofold manner: Firstly by creating a low pressure area below the splitter which pulls the splitter to the ground and by utilizing the high pressure area in front the car to push down on the top surface of the splitter. The upward and downward forces on the splitter work in tandem to provide downforce. A customized reinforced frame was used to mount this splitter to the chassis to transfer the downforce effectively while removing the need for front splitter supports which could generate unwanted aerodynamic drag.

Yet another aerodynamic option for the S2000 owners would be to convert their convertible top to a hardtop which is touted to smooth the airflow over the car thus reducing parasitic drag from the uneven ribbed shape of the soft top or the flapping of the soft top in the wind. Options include the Honda OEM hardtop or, the Mugen hardtop pictured below.


These are just three of the thousands of options available for the S2000 that will not only enhance the looks of our ride, but also increase the performance limits of thw car through improved handling. Delivering function and form, an aerodynamic modification should be top of your wish list this Christmas!

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