Suppose Honda was re-entering grand prix racing this season with Marussia rather than McLaren. Or supplying engines to a team plucked from GP2. That would be an unlikely scenario today, but it was the kind of low-key approach that the Japanese manufacturer chose 32 years ago.
It didn't sign up with a grandee of the grid to end its 14-year absence from Formula 1, but promoted one of its existing squads from the lower formulae and only turned up mid-season with what was little more than a modified Formula 2 car.
The road to Honda's return to grand prix racing with the tiny Spirit Racing team in 1983 was one traversed in a series of pigeon steps.