Honda’s first dual-sport gets the job done.
Today we have specialized motorcycles—sportbikes, ADV, trials, cruisers, various flavors of dirt bike, etc.—to fill every imaginable motorcycling niche. However, before the dirt bike boom of the ‘70s, most OEMs didn’t offer a dedicated dual-sport model for off-road adventures. In the late ‘60s, brands started equipping street bikes with dirt tires and selling them as entirely new platforms. Honda pulled such a move when it slapped dirt tires on its CB350 and renamed it the SL350. Now, a pristine restored SL350 K0 is up for auction on Bring A Trailer.
The SL350 came to its current owner in a state of disrepair. To bring it back to its previous luster, the little dual-sport underwent a massive rebuild between March 2020 and January 2021. After vapor-blasting the engine block and cases, the seller also honed the cylinders. The air-cooled, 326cc parallel twin pumps out 36 horsepower, and all that oomph is sent to the back wheel via five-speed transmission. Period-correct pieces like the dual Keihin carbs and dual-exhaust with zinc-plated heat shields also add a touch of authenticity.
Gallery: 1969 Honda SL350 KO
Union Cycle provides the 19-inch front and 18-inch rear wire-spoked wheels shod in Duro tires. A new speedometer shows over 8,000 miles but the total mileage is unknown. The conventional fork and dual-shock setup align with the SL’s retro form and function, but the high-rise MX handlebars and tall mirror stalks bring it all home. Drum brakes, a steering damper, and a kick starter/electric starter continue the theme, and the blue/white paint job steals the show.
The royal hue on the fenders, gas tank, and side covers works perfectly with the silver-painted chassis and chrome components. The refurbished lighting and seat cover tick the final boxes, and the SL350 K0 looks just as spry as the day it rolled off the factory floor. If you’re able to handle the lethal amounts of vintage vibes this Honda SL350 is giving off, you can pick it up over at the no reserve auction on Bring A Trailer.