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Machine Types: Early Pre-Production

3. It is not known if Early Pre-Production models are the bikes typically shown in the early Honda ads, "Sooner or later you knew Honda would do it." These bikes were brought to US Honda in Los Angeles. Believed to be the bikes shown at the Tokyo Auto Show, April 1968. Has the unusual side cover badges, again a different crankcase than the production bikes (but unlike the prototypes), different pipes and heat shields, non-rectangular starter cover and again K1 type carb linkage with carbs unlike carbs on production models. Had a steel upper brake line. This bike was road tested and shown as late as May 1969 in "Hot Rod" magazine and in March 1969 "Cycle Guide" magazine. Had a completely different cam cover, only having "HONDA" cast on the cover. There was no tool kit tray. There was a metal strap holding the battery in place. The alternator cover was different on this Early Pre-Production model than the Late Pre-Production model. The crankcases & starter housing cover were different than any of the later models.  Believed to be the bike shown in January 1969 of "Cycle World" at the Tokyo show, October 1968.  DOES ANYBODY KNOW WHO THE MAN RIDING THE MACHINE IS ?  HOW MANY OF THESE MACHINES WERE BUILT?  ANYBODY KNOW MORE?  Please send information to be posted.

30.Dec.04 - Chris Rushton writes, "The numbering system is certainly an interesting one. Based on my own discussions and observations, I had come to the conclusion that the early pre-production bikes were probably numbered in a sequence (four digits only) starting 1***, and the later type pre-production type (as per the Gold "Brighton show" bike - and of the type seen at Las Vegas) in a sequence (again four digits only) starting 2***. In summary, the pre-production bikes do have their own unique numbering system, which predates the sytem (seven digit) of the production bikes - the first true production spec bike would therfore of been #1000001. There are actually some pictures in a Japanes magazine of engine number 1000005 / frame number 1000010, certainly suggesting that very low serial number bikes were indeed sold.  The 1102 serial number referred to was quoted to me verbally by the owner some years ago - I have never been able to see it myself (wrong continent!).  The engine of the Early Pre-Production machine pictured is understood to still exist.  From memory, , # 1102.  It can be identified as the one from the pictured bike (if you examine the picture closely) by the bent cylinder head fin - the same fin is still bent!"    Thanks Chris, for this GREAT info !


Early Pre-Prod RH view.JPG
Early Pre-Prod LH qtr view.JPG