Honda named their del Sol for the Spanish phrase meaning ‘of the Sun.’ Let’s see if the price on today’s Nice Price of Crack Pipe VTEC edition is a complementarily bright idea.
In the 1997 movie Mimic, giant cockroaches scuttle around New York City’s streets and sewers, and occasionally eat the odd kid or two. Nobody seems wise to these aberrant Blattodea save for Mira Sorvino’s plucky scientist character despite the bugs’ size and their kid-eating proclivity. And this in a city where a pizza-loving rat can’t even nosh in an alley without ending up on YouTube.
There was a similar lack of cognizance around yesterday’s 2014 Toyota RAV4 EV. Unless you happen to have lived in California in the past five or so years, you’ve probably never even heard of them. Even if you happen to call the Golden State home, you’ve likely never acknowledged the car’s presence. Not that I blame you. There are more than 14 million cars registered in California and the RAV4 EV only makes up about 2,500 of those. Seeing one is like catching a glimpse of a giant cockroach sharing a slice of Margherita with Pizza Rat, only in this case it’s less extraordinary since it’s a RAV4.
More extraordinary was the $18,500 price tag on yesterday’s cockroach, er Tesla-powered crossover. That was feted with a Nice Price win by 56-percent of you, most of whom are no doubt now wondering what else is out there lurking in the shadows. Maybe it’s not a giant bug but someone else who calls the night their home.
Let’s say you were acquainted with one of those night-dwellers, a mistress, or perhaps a gigolo. They might just drive a car like this 1994 Honda del Sol. Why is that? Well, it’s just the persona that the del Sol seemed to cultivate. Never as sporty as the contemporary Mazda MX5, nor as dowdy as the era’s Mercury Capri, the del Sol still never seemed to gain fame as a mainstream player in Honda’s lineup, and hence it’s always been a second banana.
Since then, the Civic-based targa two seater has been overshadowed by the later, and far more focused S2000. That’s not to say that the FWD coupe didn’t find its fans, even if it’s always felt like kind of the automotive equivalent of a sidechick/dude.
This ’94 looks to break out of that stereotype that I just created and it has just the B16A3 DOHC four to do it. That engine sports Honda’s brilliant VTEC variable valve timing, as well as that technology’s crazy disparity between horsepower (160) and torque (a mere 118 lb ft). To get to either of those you need to rev the shit out of the engine so that the VTEC will actually kick in, yo. And yes, any time I’m talking about a VTEC engine I have to make that reference. It’s in my contract.
That hot mill isn’t this del Sol’s coolest feature. That would be the targa top and retractible rear window which approximate an open car experience but with coupe-like security and weather resistance. The open top required bolstering of the Civic-based platform beneath and it does tip the scales at about 200 pounds more than its CRX predecessor. At around 2,300 pounds, it’s still kind of middleweight class.
This one, in black on black, looks to be in terrific shape, and with only modest modifications. The obvious of those are a cold air intake under the hood, and some nice polished alloy wheels under the arches, the make of which I just can’t seem to place. What you can’t see, but is mentioned in the ad, is a lowered—but not too low—suspension by Skunk2 Racing. There’s also all new bushings all around, and a camber kit on both ends. The seller says that nothing rubs on bumps and the car doesn’t looks like it’s been slammed to yahoo levels.
The interior presents well, and the seller even includes a banana for scale so you know this is a real car and not a Fujimi model. Everything looks tidy, albeit Honda plasticky in there, but that’s just par for this course.
The car rocks 160,000 miles and is claimed to ‘run and drive excellent.’ A clean title rounds out the pros, while some surface rust in the driver’s door leads off the other column.
Honda del Sols seem to fall into two categories these days: clapped out crapwagons, and heavily modified cars (read, slammed) with loose facias owning to having hit them on ants or something. This one is reasonably stock, not THAT low, and seems to be in really nice shape. The question for you is: could that make it worth its $3,900 asking?
What do you think, is this del Sol a car that could claim that kind of cash? Or, does that price eclipse any interest you might have?
Palm Beach, FL Craigslist, or go here if the ad disappears.
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