Imagine you're a fanatical collector of a certain model of car. Now imagine one day you discover a car you've owned for years is the very first example of that model line sold in the U.S. If you're L.A. mechanic Tim Mings, you'd call it the most important thing you'll ever own.
Mings claims to be the only full-time Honda N600 mechanic in the world. That's not too hard to believe, considering the miniscule hatchback has been out of production for more than 40 years. Honda began selling cars in the U.S. in 1969 starting with the N600, which measured just 122 inches in length. That's small by today's standards, but it was downright tiny compared to other cars of its day. Mings developed a fascination with these vehicles at an early age, and has been working on Honda N600s exclusively for the past 20 years.
In the video below, Mings describes how he purchased an N600 sight unseen, only to discover years later that it was serial number-one -- the very first Honda imported to the U.S. Honda had branded the first 50 cars with special vehicle identification numbers. Of those, three are known to have survived and this one is the first in the series. Needless to say, Mings was floored.
Honda will be documenting the restoration process on the first N600, and will be posting video updates leading up to the car's inclusion in the Honda museum's collection. Check out the first installment of "Serial One" below and tell us what you would do if you found out you owned the very first example of your favorite car.