If you thought two-speed transmissions were only popular in the fifties and sixties and on circle tracks, then let me introduce you today's Nice Price or Crack Pipe Honda. It features the brand's early two-speed Hondamatic, and we'll need to decide if that auto makes its asking price Hondatragic.
They say home is where you find it, and at its asking price fully 65% of you thought yesterday's 1989 Dolphin M900 might be a good place to call home. Not only was that little motorhome clean as a whistle but it also sat on a Toyota base and it had a five-speed gearbox, which of course makes even a slow vehicle feel like it's a Le Mans contender.
Today's candidate does not have a five speed stick. It in fact doesn't have a stick at all, and, excluding reverse, actually only offers two cogs for your choosing. Well, to be completely honest, it does the choosing for you.
This 1978 Honda Civic CVCC is decked out to the hilt, featuring pretty much every factory and dealer-installed option you could have rolled off the lot with when it was new. One of those options is Honda's H2 Hondamatic, the company's first big-time attempt at an automatic transmission, and a name that was shared across both car and bike lines. The gearbox has a lock-up torque converter which Honda used to market it as a 3-speed, but yeah, it really, like your balls, has only two to play with.
Along with the convenience of two-pedal driving this white over blue hatchback is decked out with amazing era-appropriate features like original turbine alloys - five of them in fact - and what's claimed to be an OEM roof rack. Hell, it even has a passenger-side mirror.
The ad claims the body to be in great but not perfect shape, exhibiting minor dents and some surface rust in places (these cars are well known for partying with the tin worm), but looks otherwise as-new. All the badging is present and the rubber trim looks to be in excellent shape.
Inside it's equally a time capsule, and one that's pretty heavily optioned. Here you get a totally clean dash that features Honda's impression of full instrumentation at the time. That includes a tach, which considering the tranny might be pretty useless.
There's also amazingly a full console and Honda under-dash radio/cassette player. When was the last time you saw either of those? There's an issue with the driver's seat, but the seller notes that he has OEM fabric for it to be repaired.
Mechanically, the car seems to be in good shape. The seller admits to 72,000 miles on the car, but only 500 on what's described as a new CVCC four. The old engine, along with its blown head gasket, is included in the purchase price, in case you're a stickler for matching numbers and blown head gaskets. What exactly is that purchase price? $12,000, or about three-times what the car went for back when it was new.
What's your take on this time capsule Honda and its fancy-pants appointments? Is twelve grand a fair price for a cool car that has been kept so clean? Or, is this Civic's seller hitting the pipe?
Orange County CA Craigslist, or go here if the ad disappears.
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