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Honda's First MX Bike: The 1958 RC70MX

    Recently a picture surfaced on Facebook, claiming to be the first Honda motocross bike. Information was sketchy, but the bike was known as a 1958 Honda RC70MX. As any Honda fan knows, the "RC" model code is always reserved for works or prototype motorcycles regardless of whether they are for motocross or road racing. The "70" does not refer to engine displacement as is pretty clear from the below picture. back then, Honda has a different model nomenclature for their products, that is in use today. My guess is that this bike is between 200cc and 300cc by displacement. It's also pretty obvious that they either borrowed a lot from production machines, or this was the basis for some of their production machines, as the engine looks a lot like a 300 dream engine.
    Another thought I have is that this may have been an early attempt by Honda to get into motocross racing. At the time this bike was built, motocross was very popular in Europe, and in fact, the European circuit was where the manufacturers tested their machinery. Preston Petty raced a highly modified Honda in scrambles in the early 1960's , but these were modified by Preston himself, and included a leading link fork set up. By 1971, Honda had several prototypes being races in Japan, which in 1973, was released as the CR250m Elsinore. What ever this bike represents, it's interesting to take a look back at the beginning and to see what Honda started with. 

The below picture is of a 1956 Adler scrambler from Germany. Take a look at the layout of the bike and compare it to the RC70MX....Honda was listening