honda motorcycles Archives - Frank Ancona Honda blog

January 19, 2015

Throwback – The Vintage Frank Ancona Honda

This blog feature is courtesy of Michael Ancona, president of Frank Ancona Honda. Thank you for sharing a little Ancona history with us!

Fun Fact: Frank Ancona has been a cars-only dealership only since 1985. They started out back in 1961 as Northeast Sport Motors, selling motorcycle various motorcycle brands including Ducati, Norton, Triumph, and of course Honda. Before Frank Ancona Honda was a car dealership, the company sold motorcycles. The dealership actually sold more vehicles than Honda and won the Top Award from Soichiro Honda in 1966. Frank Ancona traveled to Japan to receive the honor and met Mr. Honda himself.

 

Text Reads: “Top Award 1966 Honda Holiday in Japan Contest. Presented to Northeast Sport Motors Kansas City, Missouri in recognition of Outstanding Achievement – Soichiro Honda, President” Courtesy of Michael Ancona

In 1971 the dealership expanded into selling cars and used to have their motorcycles and cars in the same showroom off of Truman Road in Kansas City. Since 1961, the Ancona family has amassed many cool collectibles, some of which have great sentiment with the Ancona family.

1971 Honda 600 Coupe

 

The antique Honda 600 Coupe was bought and restored many years ago by Frank Ancona. A farmer’s wife was cleaning out the barn after her husband’s death and sold Mr. Ancona the car. When Honda first began making cars, they actually made them with motorcycle engines. You can tell the Ancona’s Honda has one because the transmission is in the dash, not the floor. There are more fun facts about the car from Michael Ancona. “They only made them in ugly colors back then,” he says, listing bright shades of orange, yellow, teal and green. This olive green Coupe only has 58,000 miles on it and is mostly original. You can see it for yourself on the dealership floor.

1975 Honda MR50 Elsinore

The Honda MR50 is a special edition mini dirt bike, only made in 1974 and 1975. Ancona’s is a 1975 model two-stroke with a 3-speed manual clutch transmission. The MR50 was modeled after its older brothers – the CR125 and CR250 Elsinores. Everything about the mini bike was the same as the larger models except for one thing. Parents could manually control how fast their little tykes went on the bike using an allen screw in one of the four throttle stops.

1986 Honda Spree

 

The Spree was the entry level 50cc scooter for Honda with the Aero50 as their premium offering. Sold in the US and Canada between the years of 1984 to 1987, the Honda Spree was 2-stroke engine using a belt drive instead of a multi-ratio variator. Eventually the Honda Spree was replaced with the Honda Elite E/ES. The 1986 model in the dealership is in mint condition with only eight miles on it.

1983 Honda Express

The 1983 Honda Express is a special little bike for the Ancona family. Many of the Ancona kids rode it around the KU campus back in the day, so much so that it has a whopping 440 miles on it. You can still see a KU parking pass on the rear wheel fender! The scooter was made by Honda from 1977 to 1983 and is powered by an air-cooled 49cc two stroke with an automatic transmission.

Honda Kick-N-Go 2

Precursor to the Razor scooters, the Honda Kick-N-Go 2 is now a nostalgia item for many adults who yearned for their own or put a lot of miles on theirs growing up. The first Kick-N-Go was released in 1974 aimed for children while the Kick-N-Go 2, released in 1976, was aimed for teenagers. Unlike other scooters where you kicked at the ground, the Kick-N-Go moves by kicking the pedal down and has a handbrake to slow down.

1963 Honda Generators

These Honda generators may not power a hair dryer today, Michael Ancona says, but back in 1963 it was an Award of Merit for his father Frank Ancona. Mr. Ancona won the award based on outstanding achievement and sales effort in that year. These generators were created by Honda to expand on their previous product line success by making them portable. In the 60s, this generator was ideal. It has a 300-watt output and runs on gas with a pull start. It was considered quiet and extremely compact for travel.

Frank Ancona Honda plans on putting these collectibles on display on the main floor of the dealership. Do you have any memories of these Honda classics? Let us know in the comments.