So I recently turned 30, and for my birthday, my wife and parents organized a trip to Marysville, Ohio to visit the newly opened Honda Heritage Center. This museum was created by Honda to celebrate the company's pursuits in the North American market.
The self-guided tour started with the company's two wheeled vehicles, mainly the Honda Super Cub, which would go on the become the best selling motorized vehicle of all time.
The first actual Honda car sold in America, however, was the N600. It is extremely small, think original Mini Cooper size.
The second generation Honda Accord was the first to be produced at the Marysville plant. It was amazing to see a pedestrian car like this so well preserved.
The first generation Civic was the car that really launched Honda as a respected automotive brand in America. The car was released during the 70s gas crisis and buyers flocked to the efficient runabout. This car is significantly bigger than the earlier N600, which helped the model appeal to larger American audiences.
The CRX has always been one of my favorite Honda models. I had a 1987 model at one point, though it was in nowhere near as good of shape as this perfect example.
Of course, I'm going to be asked what my favorite car was at the Heritage Center. That honor goes to this JDM-spec Honda Accord wagon. It was a 5spd with 35 original miles. Incredible.
All of the coupes and wagons in the Accord range have been made in Marysville. The company created this logo to use on those cars overseas as a symbol of pride in their production. With the ending of the TSX model line, there are currently no Honda wagons for the American market. Here's hoping that Honda finds a way to get one over here soon. You have at least one buyer!
Acura has also been a huge part of the Honda story in America. From the first release of the Legend, the the CL coupe, which was the first car designed, built, and sold, all in America.
The Center has a nice collection of race cars and bikes that had been used in various motorsports over the years.
Honda has been a big player in the alternative fuel market, from the natural gas powered Civics, to the hydrogen powered second generation FCX Clarity. This was a car that was only available in California for lease.
There were also several design and engineering concept vehicles on display, including the new NSX, which will be built next door to the Marysville plant. This car is really incredible looking in person!
I'd like to thank my parents and Aimee for pulling this trip together. Honda has really put together a nice collection here at the Hertitage Center, and should be on the list for any Honda enthusiast. Now, if only I can make it to the Honda Collection Hall at Twin Ring Motegi in Japan, my Honda dreams will be complete.