The first generation Honda Civic was deigned by a young Honda design engineer called Shinya Iwakura (eye-waa-kura). Born in 1939 he was still in his early 30’s when he was given the task to design the 1st gen Civic at the Wako R&D Center in the summer of 1970.
The car developed from this concept but was later named the “Civic,” meaning “a car created for citizens and cities.”
Here he is with some early design sketches
I think we all agree the early bumper are a peach, Along with the “RS” mirrors is shortens the car into an un-fussy compact unit.
Deep, deep deep inside Honda HQ is the worlds first, 1st gen civic and its made of wood
Here we can see the basic outline of the shell constructed in wood with engineers inside making decisions about the interior design, occupants room and comfort. In the foreground someone is choosing seat material whilst two more are perhaps pondering steering wheel design. At the back we can see a scale drawing of the car from a side elevation. At the side is a rack perhaps with carpet samples. Its a busy room indeed…………..
Seats did not change much
but the rear window lower edge did.
Here’s we are in July 1976 and the one MILLIONTH civic rolls of the line at the Suzuka factory in Japan
Production volume of 1st Civic (domestic and international)
1972 27000 units (Production start July 11, 1972)
1973 173000 units
1974 433000 units
1975 778000 units
1976 1169000 units
1977 1508000 units
1978 1830000 units
1979 2131000 units (Production end July 23, 1979)
There were months long waiting lists for the cars at the dealers for a grand over sticker… They were selling for more than they sold for new at the dealer through the classified ads in the newspaper. I bought my first civic from a loooong time customer in November, she took possession of her new 80 civic in February and that was when I got my car… Body and interior beautiful the carburetor barely would open the secondaries since the throttle was never pushed that far.
First thing was to reach under the dash and unplug the belt warning buzzer. Second thing was to replace the engine and transmission and start pulling parts out from under my bed!!!
I bought my first Civic in 1978 and paid about $3,300.00 Canadian, about 3x the amount of a 57Chev. 🙂