1996 Honda NSX-R

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Coral Gables, Florida | March 2024

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The Honda NSX, sold in the U.S. as an Acura, went on sale for the 1991 model year. It famously had Ayrton Senna as one of its development drivers. It didn’t take long for Honda to want to up the ante a bit over the standard road car.

One year, to be exact, before they brought out the NSX-R, a hardcore version of the NSX. Weight was the name of the game, and they stripped 265 pounds out of the car via the sound deadening, A/C, stereo, and traction control. It got a competition suspension, a revised final drive ratio, and a balanced crankshaft.

Otherwise, the 3.0-liter V6 was unchanged. In manual-transmission setup it made 270 horsepower. Production ended in late 1995, with this being among the last of the 483 units built. All were badged as Hondas, and none were sold new in the U.S. This car has less than 12,000 miles and has an estimate of $450,000-$550,000. Click here for more info.

Footwork FA14

1993 Footwork-Mugen-Honda FA14

Offered by Bonhams | Chichester, U.K. | April 16, 2023

Photo – Bonhams

Footwork was the name the Arrows team competed under in Formula One from 1991 through 1996. The name is actually that of their largest investor/sponsor, Footwork Express, a Japanese logistics company.

1993 was the second of two seasons that the team sourced their 3.5-liter V10 engines from Honda, which were branded as Mugen-Honda. Output was likely around 720 horsepower. This chassis, FA14-04, retains its engine, but that engine is lacking internals. So it’s essentially a roller.

The competition history for this one includes:

  • 1993 Spanish Grand Prix – 10th (with Aguri Suzuki)
  • 1993 Canadian Grand Prix – 13th (with Suzuki)
  • 1993 French Grand Prix – 12th (with Suzuki)
  • 1993 British Grand Prix – 23rd, DNF (with Suzuki)
  • 1993 German Grand Prix – 22nd, DNF (with Suzuki)
  • 1993 Hungarian Grand Prix – 16th, DNF (with Suzuki)
  • 1993 Belgian Grand Prix – 22nd, DNF (with Suzuki)
  • 1993 Italian Grand Prix – 22nd, DNF (with Suzuki)
  • 1993 Portuguese Grand Prix – 23rd, DNF (with Suzuki)
  • 1993 Japanese Grand Prix – 17th, DNF (with Suzuki)
  • 1993 Australian Grand Prix – 7th (with Suzuki)

So, no points for this car, and quite a string of bad luck. I kind of love relatively livery-less F1 cars from this era. They look so plain as to be almost homebuilt. But even a mid-pack car like this was highly sophisticated in its day. The estimate now is $145,000-$190,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $140,759.

Honda NSX

1995 Honda NSX

Offered by Bonhams | Paris, France | March 3, 2021

Photo – Bonhams

It’s always weird when manufacturers adorn cars with different branding based on where they are sold. The NSX is an Acura product in North America. But pretty much everywhere else in the world, it’s a Honda. And this Honda NSX is from the middle of the first generation. It was delivered new to France, so it’s left-hand drive, but it’s also 25 years old. That means you can bring it to the U.S.

The first-gen NSX is an appreciating classic. It’s one of the last wonderfully analog cars. In 1995, the NSX was still two years away from a displacement increase and a power bump, and the 3.0-liter V6 in this car was rated at 270 horsepower.

There are more desirable and interesting colors, but you can’t really go wrong with red on a two-door, mid-engine sports car. This 15,000-mile example should sell for between $67,000-$91,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $68,373.

Honda S600 Coupe

1967 Honda S600 Coupe

Offered by BH Auction | Osaka, Japan | December 20, 2020

Photo – BH Auction

A few weeks ago we featured Honda’s first sports car (and second-ever automobile), the Honda S500. Well, the S500 was replaced in 1964 by this, the S600. The car launched as a roadster, much like the S500 before it, and in early 1965, the coupe variant was introduced.

Power is from a 606cc inline-four that still featured Keihin motorcycle carburetors (four of them). The water-cooled, DOHC unit powered the rear wheels via chain drive and produced 57 horsepower from the factory. Top speed was about 90 mph.

The S600 was produced until 1966 when it was replaced by the S800, which was also available in coupe and roadster form. Only 1,800 S600 coupes were built in two model years, making it much rarer than the convertible (of which over 11,000 were built).

This car is listed as a 1967, and it is apparently one of just eight built after S600 production officially wrapped in 1966. There’s got to be more to that story, but I don’t have it. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $33,029.

Honda S500

1964 Honda S500

Offered by BH Auction | Osaka, Japan | December 20, 2020

Photo – BH Auction

The S500 was just the second production car from Honda. And it spawned a line of sports cars that has, thus far, culminated in the spectacular S2000 (after quite a long gap). Produced only in 1963 and 1964, the S500 would be replaced by the S600 and then the S800.

Only 1,363 examples were produced, all of which were two-door roadsters. Power is from a 531cc inline-four that routes power to the rear wheels via a four-speed manual transmission and chain drive. That’s right, Honda leaned heavily on its motorcycle experience with this car. It’s got Keihin carburetors and a 9,500-rpm redline.

With just 44 horsepower on tap, it wasn’t blindingly fast. But it’s tiny. Like really tiny. And is a complete “momentum car.” And I’m sure it’s a blast. No estimate is available at this time, but you can read more here and see more from this sale here.

Update: Not sold.

Honda S800 Coupe

1969 Honda S800 Coupe

Offered by H&H Classics | Duxford, U.K. | October 17, 2018

Photo – H&H Classics

The S800 was Honda’s third sports car, after the S500 and S600. It was the second that could be had as a coupe or convertible. We’ve previously featured an S800 Roadster and this is the much rarer coupe variant.

Introduced in 1966, the S800 is powered by a 791cc DOHC straight-four. These cars are screamers, with a tachometer that lets you rev it like it’s a superbike. Along with the Datsun Roadster, these were Japan’s answer to tiny British cars from Austin-Healey, MG, Triumph, and the like.

This 56,000-mile example has had three owners. Apparently, it has a starter issue, so it will need a little work before being roadworthy. Only 11,536 S800s were built, many of them drop-tops. This rare coupe should bring between $14,000-$17,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $17,615.

The Winner of the 100th Indy 500

2012 Dallara-Honda DW12

Offered by Mecum | Monterey, California | August 25, 2018

Photo – Mecum

The DW12 was IndyCar’s new chassis beginning in the 2012 season. Named for the late Dan Wheldon, the DW12 is expected to be the series’ base chassis through the 2020 season. Built by Dallara, this chassis, #037, won the 2016 Indy 500 with rookie Alexander Rossi behind the wheel.

The engine in this car is a twin-turbo 2.2-liter Honda V-6 tuned to make about 625-ish horsepower. It still wears the distinctive blue and yellow NAPA livery that Rossi took to victory lane as well as the 2016 Honda Speedway aero kit. You’re probably wondering why this “2012” Dallara won the 2016 Indy 500. Well, here’s the Indy 500 competition history for this chassis:

  • 2012 Indianapolis 500 – 12th (with Alex Tagliani)
  • 2013 Indianapolis 500 – 24th (with Tagliani)
  • 2014 Indianapolis 500 – 20th (with Jack Hawksworth)
  • 2015 Indianapolis 500 – 16th (with Gabby Chaves)
  • 2016 Indianapolis 500 – 1st (with Alexander Rossi)

That’s right, it’s run five Indy 500s, winning the last time out (and what a race it was). The official entrant was Andretti Herta Autosport with Curb-Agajanian… which is a mouthful. Indy 500-winning cars rarely change hands and many of them are owned by the Speedway Museum itself. So it’s rare that one is out in the wild – especially one that could technically still compete. Here’s your chance to grab a piece of history. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $1,127,500.

Honda S800

1968 Honda S800 Cabriolet

Offered by Aguttes | Lyon, France | March 18, 2017

Photo – Aguttes

Honda is known for their economy cars and hatchbacks. But the second production car they ever built was a sports car, the 1963 S500. The S800 was introduced two generations later in 1966. It wouldn’t have a successor until 1999’s S2000.

The S800 was produced as a coupe and convertible and its targeted competitors included the likes of the Austin-Healey Sprite and MG Midget. It’s basically Japan’s first take on the classic English roadster. Take that Mazda Miata. The engine here is a 791cc straight-four making 78 horsepower. And it revs to almost nine grand, so it’s going to sound awesome with the top down.

Only 11,536 examples of the S800 were built between 1966 and 1970. The current owner acquired this example in the early 1990s and had it restored. The bright yellow paint looks great and the styling on this cars continues to improve with age. With less than 20,000 miles since the restoration, it’s still relatively fresh and ready to rev. It should bring between $24,000-$30,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $36,210.

Lemur Monitors: BlueDriver. Tested!

First off let me admit that I seem to have some pretty terrible luck when it comes to automobile ownership. My last car needed an emergency Gorilla Tape repair at one point. So when this little guy showed up in the mail this week, I was rather excited:

300dpi BlueDriverSensorInHand

Lemur Monitors’ BlueDriver is a very compact OBD-II scanner that you plug in under your dash. Pulling up an app on your smart phone then tells you what’s going on under the hood. It’ll work on every 1996 or newer car. Got a check engine light that won’t go away? This will tell you what it is. They sent me one to play with, so play I did.

I downloaded the app, which is free, then popped this thing on an ’02 Camry in the garage that has had it’s dashboard lit like a Christmas tree with yellow warnings for well over a year. Once the scanner is in place, you turn the car on and it pairs via Bluetooth to your phone.

300dpi BlueDriverCarOnce it’s paired, you can read any error codes your car is throwing as well as run a smog check (if you live in an unfortunate state) and run live diagnostic checks that will tell you different temperatures and things – all color coded so you know what’s wrong (you can also log data as you drive).

And boy was there stuff wrong! Once you click “Read Codes,” it will spit out a button for each code and from there you can dive into possible causes and reported fixes. I can honestly say this would have saved me a lot of time back when my Mazda acquired a gaping hole in an air hose and my local mechanics fixed everything but. I would have personally searched every hose before handing over the keys.


Pictured: Bad News.

The reports are saved off in the app itself, but it’s really easy to email yourself a PDF so you can look at it later on a different machine. I had four codes, three of which I already knew about, but one – a too-lean fuel system – was new. After seeing the error, I looked in the live diagnostic tool and confirmed that the fuel trim wasn’t what it should be.

Screenshot_2015-06-12-15-39-00 (1)

Now that I knew what was wrong, I needed to figure out what to do about it. Luckily the app is packed with info on each error code. It gives you possible causes, some of which are more helpful than others. And it gives you possible solutions, ranging from the free (Hey, your gas cap is loose!) to the very costly (You need a new catalytic converter!). And when you’re done, it takes a single click to clear all the codes – but be warned, once they’re gone you can’t report on them. Lucky for me, these codes will definitely be re-appearing.


The PDFs are pretty nice, especially if the car isn’t yours.

I also tried plugging this in to my much-healthier Civic. There weren’t any codes to read but I could at least check out the live feed to see what was going on. But that’s about the extent of it if your car doesn’t have issues.

It’s fairly easy to use once you realize that you need to turn the car on in order for your phone to find the scanner (which I didn’t at first). But luckily there is a built-in user manual that consists of YouTube videos – the car repair manual of the 21st century. You will also need the VIN number of the car… which turns out to be sort of interesting in itself (see below).

In all, the BlueDriver is pretty handy. For $99.95 you get a little black box that will fit in your pocket – but it’s the app that you’re paying for. It’s packed with information that’s actually helpful. If you spend a lot of time on the road – or are taking a long-distance road trip – this would be an excellent thing to keep in your glove box should your car encounter and mysterious issues along the way. It can definitely help calm you down if your check engine light comes on in the middle of nowhere. Whether or not the cost is worth it is up to you.

Bonus: there is a vehicle info section that allows you to enter a VIN number and then it will decode the entire thing. If you’re a car nerd, this is pretty cool for when you’re walking around a car show or parking lot and want to know what’s supposed to be under the hood of every car.