The Japanese first produced the Honda 1300 in 1969, and they continued production until 1973. What makes this car unique? It is the largest car that the company ever manufactured, and they released the front wheel drive 1300 as a coupe and sedan. Originally, Honda intended this vehicle to compete against its greatest rivals of the time: Toyota Corona, Mitsubishi Gallant, Nissan Bluebird and Mazda Capella.
Soichiro Honda started the ambitious project, but they met with an ongoing plague in engineering delays and a higher price compared to the competition. The lessons learned, however, led to the successful creation of the Honda Civic in 1972, and in 1976, it led to another famous successor known as the Honda Accord.
During the development of this project, Soichiro Honda stayed adamant about the engine needing air cooling over water cooling. He argued that air cooled engines will eventually need to use air to cool the water. The Honda 1300 originally started with two separate engine versions: The first being the Series 77 and the second being the Series 99. The 77 features a single carburetor 100 PS engine, and the Series 99 featured four carburetors with a 115 PS engine. You could buy the vehicle with four trims, and there was the optional choice of automatic transmission and air conditioning.
Soichiro Honda introduced the vehicle at the Tokyo Motor Show on October 1968, but they did not begin production until May 1969 when it first went on sale. They reportedly delayed the launch because Soichiro Honda found the style of the 1300 as unacceptably bland, and he wanted a redesign of the vehicle. During this time, Honda himself owned and drove a Pontiac Firebird, which could be the reason for the split air intakes on the front of the Honda 1300.