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Thread: 1960s Honda 50

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    1960s Honda 50

    The first gasoline powered vehicle I bought was a Honda 50 motorcycle. I bought it used in 1965. It comes to mind recently after seeing gasoline prices soar. According to an old ad I found, it could get 200 mpg (see attached). I donít remember if thatís true, but with gas being less than thirty cents per gallon the year that ad came out, it was not much of a selling point.

    Looking at the styling, it seems sort of cute. Like a cross between a cycle and a scooter. But back then it was embarrassing to drive. Cute was not cool. It was not even a word men used to describe vehicles. I took the wind guard off to try to make it look more like a motorcycle. Also, it was not suitable for freeway driving, and not practical for long drives on surface streets. I remember one time my hands went numb from all the vibration.

    Also, back then Japanese products were seen as the worst. The phrase ďmade in JapanĒ was used as a generic way to say someone was of a piece of junk. But I think Honda was one of the forces that changed that, even before their cars hit the US. The motorcycles were catching on. And then I remember seeing their first tiny car being sold at a motorcycle dealer. It looked sort of odd, shoved into the corner next to the bikes. But eventually Honda had car dealers all around Los Angeles.

    Unlike the cars Iíve owned, I donít have any fond memories of my Honda 50. But it did get me to work and to school and home again. And it would be great to get 200 mpg.
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