Honda Beat - "Midship Amusement"
Written by Warren Mok (Enthusiast)
Honda Motor Co Ltd has been producing small displacement, high output vehicles for over 50 years but they have only produced two rear-wheel drive cars with a mid-engine layout.
One of them is the phenomenon Honda NSX, and the other you ask? The Honda Beat.
It’s a part of the Japanese Ultra Compact (aka Kei Car) culture, with cars infamous for their light weight and superb handling. The Beat weighs in at barely 760kg, with dimensions 130in long and 55in wide.
The Honda Beat is a 2-seat convertible that is spiced up with an exciting Mid Engine, Rear Wheel Drive layout. It is powered by a 3-cylinder 660cc, SOHC 12-valve, MTREC Engine. The MTREC (Multi Throttle Response Engine Control) is designed to have one throttle valve for each of the three cylinders, providing this E07A engine with great throttle response through to redline at 8100rpm.
The Beat was only available with a smooth 5-speed manual transmission. It was also equipped with 4- wheel disc brakes, and MacPherson strut front and rear suspension. Production started in May of 1991 and ended in June of 1996; in all, 33,600 Honda Beat were produced.
The Honda Beat is fun, full of excitement and handles like a dream. This might not be a NSX; but for enthusiasts looking for a more affordable, easier to daily drive, NSX alternative, the Beat is quite the eye-catcher.
What Our Clients Say About The Beat
Client: Carl Kung
Vehicle: 1991 Honda Beat (Stock #: T23153)
" The first thing I have to say is don't get one if you don't want
attention. I get asked all the time what is it and where did I get it. I
tried to deflect some of that by getting the plate "ITSABEAT" but to no
Then, when they realize I'm on the "wrong" side they really freak
out and wonder if it's even legal. The best example of that was when I
got stopped at a RIDE spot-check and had the cop ask where my driver
was! I took it through Yorkville during the Toronto international Film
Fest and got a lot of approving nods and stares.
What I like is that
it's a very unique car without any air of pretension or snobbery about
After all, it's a Honda.
As for mileage, now that I have had a bit more time to drive it and in
various conditions, it seems to average about 6-7 litres per 100 km's.
This is all with the top down driving in the city.
On the highway, it's about the same since you have to really get the
revs up ( 5-5,500 rpm on it's 660CC) to maintain a reasonable pace. With the top down
on the highway, the interior is fine with the side windows up. It's not
particularly windy that way and the heater is more that adequate. I've
had it out with the top down in 6 degree weather and it's been comfy
with a light fall jacket on. With the top up, I imagine the highway
mileage would be a bit better but can't say for sure.
The ride itself is a bit on the firm side but not harsh. The Beat's ride
and steering definitely let you feel the road but I like it. It does
make my '08 Civic Si feel like a land yacht though.
Parking on the street is a breeze
though as it's only a bit larger than a Smart.
Oh and grocery shopping
can be a bit of a challenge if you have a passenger
along as the trunk
is about the size of a shoebox. A small shoebox.
I don' t have any regrets about buying the car and would do it again in
a heartbeat. I tell everyone who asks that I bought my Beat from Terra2 Imports and highly recommend them!. "
Available Honda Beat Listings
In Japan - Dealer
In Japan - Public
In Japan - Public
In Japan - Public