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Honda reveals mid-engined Neo Classic Racer

by Ben Hsu

The compact sportster takes a retro cue.

Honda has revealed a new sports car ahead of its official debut at the Tokyo Auto Salon next January. The Honda Neo Classic Racer Concept envisions what a modern super-compact race car might look like.

In Japan, Honda still sells a two-seater, mid-engined sports car that's not the NSX. The Honda S660 falls into the kei class, which is meant for crowded urban areas and limits the physical size of the car as well as its power output in exchange for lower operating taxes.

At the 2016 Tokyo Auto Salon, and aftermarket show similar to SEMA in the US, Honda revealed a custom S660 called the Neo Classic. It replaced the S660's modern and angular styling with a classic look reminiscent of Honda cars of the 1960s. The car was well received enough that Honda decided earlier this year to put the kit into production and make it available at select Honda dealers in Japan.

The Neo Classic Racer takes the Neo Classic as its base and adds fender mirrors like Japanese cars of old, wide-body exposed-fastener over fenders, a belt-strap frunk latch, a hardtop for the canvas roof, and spoilers both chin and rear. The headlights are X'ed out in a manner evoking taped-up sealed-beam units in olden-day race cars.

Honda hasn't mentioned anything about upping the performance, but given that it must comply with kei car restrictions, that will likely be left to the aftermarket.

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