It’s constantly good to observe a automobile firm understand its heritage, and that’s simple to do as soon as said heritage involves iconic muscle cars, or a distinguished racing pedigree. The 1969 Honda N600, the initial Honda automobile sold in the U.S., isn’t the sexiest piece of automotive history, yet it’s vital nonetheless.
The N600 helped launch the shift that viewed little Japanese cars properly challenge the hegemony of gas guzzlers from the Huge Three. And now the initial of those cars to strike U.S. shores is obtaining a restoration, which Honda will certainly report in an online video collection called Serial One.
The automobile in question is among simply 50 N600s imported to the U.S. throughout the car’s initial year on sale here. It’s now in the arms of Tim Mings, that describes themselves as the world’s just full-time Honda N600 mechanic. He’s restored over 1,000 of the cars in his Los Angeles-location shop, and he bought this particular automobile sight unseen some time ago. At the time, he didn’t understand he’d purchased the initial U.S. N600.
The flood of Civics, CR-Vs, and Accords on U.S. roads today makes it tough to imagine a time as soon as Honda wasn’t an automotive powerhouse. yet in 1969, the firm was just known for making little motorcycles, and its initial U.S.-market automobile focused on efficiency at a time when consumers seemed to just care regarding design and performance. This was the height of the muscle automobile era, and the N600 was decidedly un-muscular.
It had a 598-cc two-cylinder engine and a best rate of simply 81 mph. Granted, the engine was rather advanced for the time, featuring all-alloy construction and the ability to rev to 9,000 rpm. And the N600 position Honda in a great placement for the 1970s, when oil crises and brand-new environmental legislation suddenly earned fuel economy a lot more vital to consumers and others manufacturers.
So while it won’t attract as considerably focus as, say, a restored ’69 Camaro, the initial Honda N600 certainly deserves some TLC. Honda expects the restoration to take 12 to 18 months, and will certainly launch videos documenting its progress. Remain tuned to observe this pile of junk transform spine in to a functioning automobile.