Honda UK has recently undertaken a restoration project on one of their 1967 Honda S800 sports cars as part of their celebrations of the vehicle’s 50th anniversary.
The S800 was the first four-wheeled vehicle Honda produced in the UK and was very much in line with the popular small roadsters of the time that were being produced by the likes of MG and Triumph.
They recently acquired the vehicle and have begun painstakingly restoring it to its former glories, with a view to it being ready in time for the Goodwood Festival of Speed, which takes place next June.
The model in question is a red 1967 S800 and is being restored in partnership with Le Riche Automobile Restorers who are based in Jersey.
The plan is for the vehicle to be added to Honda’s growing heritage press fleet once the restoration is complete, as a way to show off the manufacturer’s great heritage at events around the UK.
The vehicle in question is currently suffering from a little bit of rust and wear and tear, which is perfectly acceptable considering it’s almost 50 years old, and perhaps more surprisingly, the engine is still in good working condition.
Honda is aiming to fully restore the vehicle to a condition which reflects its age, while making sure not to ‘over-restore’ it and keep it looking authentic.
Philip Crossman, the managing director of Honda UK explained that the restoration will be mostly cosmetic explaining: “Next year, 2017 marks the 50th anniversary of the first four-wheeled Honda to be sold in the UK – the S800.
“And with this golden celebration for Honda in the UK, the S800 is the perfect addition to the press fleet.
“The engine still works perfectly, as you expect from a Honda, so we don’t need to engage a complete overhaul of the car.
“The interior needs looking at, as do parts of the bodywork – in short, it simply needs some loving care and attention, which we are trusting to Le Riche, to get it back to its former glory.”
The original S800 was capable of reaching a top speed of up to 100mph despite its small size, gaining its power from its high revving 800cc motor, which was derived from the manufacturer’s successful motorbike division and could redline at 10,000 rpm.
The last S800 rolled off the production line in May of 1970 after around 12,000 were made.
It wasn’t until almost 30 years later that Honda went back and made another S roadster, in the form of the S2000.
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