SPEX ELF Kit Car Also Known as the Spyder

what_isspexelf1In 1985 a couple of Canadian designers Paul Deutchman & Kell Warshaw manufactured in Montreal a kit car based on the first generation Honda Civic (1973-1979). The Spex Elf was a two seat fiberglass convertible with a sub frame for added structural integrity. The styling was comparable to that of many Japanese cars of the mid to late 80’s. The Elf used the Honda chassis/drive train as well as other parts from the donor car, while the front lights came from the Honda Accord and the tail lights from the back of a Mercury Capri. A build up of the kit was featured in the September and November 1985 issues of Kit Car magazine published by Petersen’s. Kit value was approx. $3,750.00 basic and $5,995.00 for the deluxe. 20 Kits were built before the molds were sold.

The idea was fairly simple – take an early (e.g. 1970’s) Honda Civic 3-door. Cut off everything above the window sills and remove the doors and all of the bolted front panels (guards & bonnet). On to this shell was bolted a steel strengthening frame and the whole lot was then covered by a simple but elegant open body, complete with opening doors etc using the Honda hardware. The original Honda running gear was untouched so it was mechanically simple and reliable. Performance was improved a little by the slightly reduced weight. Looks and style were GREATLY improved. Dominic


Many thanks to Darren Segan for this wonderful contribution

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Special tanks to Tor and Paul Deutchman for providing these ads to help solve some of the mystery behind the wonderful kits.

Click on the images below to view some pages on Kit Build Up Part 2










Paul Deutchman has some big credits to his name.
If you’ve seen the Porsche Spexter or any recent Callaway cars (the C7 Corvette or CS Camaro, for example), you’ve seen his work. Deutchman Design
what_isspexelf_26These kits have been built with the popular 1200 engine as well as the CVCC motor used in California because of strict  pollution requirements. Rumor has it that one was built with a first generation Honda Prelude engine.

See the slide show for more images

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