Honda Z600 Coupe Sets Bonneville Record

Microcars are on a roll! First a duo of Subaru 360s finishes 1-2 in their class in the Liége-Brescia-Liége, and now a Honda Z600 has broken the 600cc class land speed record at Bonneville Speed Week. We first came across Evil Tweety last year when we pitted it in a hypothetical Blaze of Glory Deathmatch against jet- and ‘Busa- powered Z600s. JNCers, including Evil Tweety’s own driver Eric Burns, voted for JETBOY as their chariot into the afterlife, but that was before anyone knew this bad bird could hit 106.531 mph on the salt flats!

Congrats to fearless pilots Eric Burns and Chris Clay!

[Image: Popular Mechanics]

This post is filed under: honda, kei, motorsports.

8 Responses to Honda Z600 Coupe Sets Bonneville Record

  1. Ryan said:

    I’ve owned a Z600 and doing 106 MPH in sounds crazy. IMO The 600 and first gen Civic are the only Hondas worth owning. Can’t wait to get another one.

  2. Ben said:

    Hopefully Eric will come back to tell us how the experience went!

  3. El Kimico said:

    Congratulations Eric for your achievement! Microcars on a roll.

  4. GEN2TWINCAM said:

    Right on Eric!

    I’ve been following Eric’s progress for some time now. I’m glad that I can now keep up with his achievements at the JNC site!

    After owning a Z Coupe for a number of years, I always felt that there was a lot of potential for development. It’s great to see Mr. Burns actually doing it!

    Neil – Colorado

  5. Eric Burns said:

    Hey everyone – first off thank you to Japanese Nostalgic Car for all the press!

    For those of you that don’t know – we ran 101.5 in September of 2004 and were only able to back it up such that the two way average was 99.299. After that was 3 more years going after the century mark.

    Bonneville can be very humbling, it’s like racing on another planet. The shifts in air density, humidity (the salt is moist in the mornings) and temperature – plus pushing a vehicle with a short fuse for 3 miles (5 for the long course) can be difficult to navigate. Then add in that you are camped out in a salt desert with limited resources and tools to make repairs or changes. Air density of 7200′? Yeah, that lowers your horsepower a bit.

    So for 2005, 2006 and 2007 we arrived with more horsepower but were plagued with gremlins. I work on a pretty small budget of both time and money, which affected those years. And if it wasn’t for my sponsor Engine Dynamics and a few other key individuals we never would have gotten any of the records.

    The engine is already pretty trick if you think about it. The US cars had 36HP for 36 CID – one horsepower per CID was a big deal in 1970 (think Boss 302 for example) – and the Euro version of the 600s were supposed to be 45HP.

    How does the car drive at 100+ mph? Very mellow. I actually drove my first run of the week at 104.3 (for the new Production record) while tuning the car. (Gotta love Electromotive EFI!) The crew chief (Chris Clay) had his first run (in altered trim – see the photo) at something like 106.9 mph. It’s a blast, but nothing scary. All we’ve done is lower the car 1″ and put in new steering bushings (thanks!) Car is licensed and insured, and I drive it to work once in a while – with mufflers of course.

    So that’s the details. At some point I’ll have a better profile up at – but for now, there’s the quick summary!

  6. Ben said:

    Hi Eric, thanks for checking in. Gotta love those Hondas and how they’ve managed to cram a lot of horses into tiny engines. Now, I wonder where you could do a run at sea level… 🙂 Congrats on the record and keep us updated of any new developments. Will you be back next year?

  7. Eric Burns said:

    Hey everyone, we are hopefully headed back for 2009 – just a few weeks and counting, still need to build an engine. Going to try to see how some new pistons (better burn pattern) help us on the J/Production record.

    Then we’ll go after the J/FALT (Fuel Altered) record (currently open) using a Nitrous setup. You can watch the progress here:

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