How it took just three letters to get Honda watchers all excited.
The rumour mill surrounding Honda’s plans to build a smaller version of its Honda NSX supercar sprung back to life this week after it emerged the company has applied to trademark “ZSX” in Europe.
Performance Drive has reported that Honda submitted a trademark application to the European Union Intellectual Property Office for the letter combination ZSX.
Honda’s attachment to the ZSX name is nothing new. It trademarked the letter combination in Japan and the US in 2009. This happens to be the year Honda stopped making the S2000 roadster and speculation has abounded since about a high-performance junior NSX replacement (pictured) which has yet to eventuate.
The Japanese trademark is valid until March 2019 but the US one expired in 2012 (it doesn’t appear to have been registered in Australia), so why the excitement over the European application?
The timing is interesting in that it coincides with a story in the Automoto which cites an anonymous source claiming to be an engineer at Honda in Japan as saying the company is planning to debut the ZSX next year and is planning to debut it at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
The source also claims the hybrid ZSX will be offered first as a coupe, followed by a roadster version with a folding/removable hard top, and will be powered by a modified 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine taken from the Honda Civic Type-R with electric motors on the front and rear axles.
The news is great if it’s true, though it’s worth noting that Honda makes plenty of different products and the ZSX could prove to be anything from a generator to a personal jet aircraft.
Honda Australia declined to comment about the ZSX name or if the company was planning to produce a ‘baby NSX’.
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