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Honda Prelude 1997-2002



  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,260
    Congrats on your Prelude purchase! 87,000 miles on a '97 is NOTHING (My '01 has a little over 69,000)! Off the top of my head, just change the oil every 4,000 miles or so. make sure you use full synthetic (5w30). I prefer Castrol Syntec over Mobil 1. I think there is a major service due at 90,000 miles. That's when Honda advises on changing the timing belt. Is you car a stick or Automatic?

    The Prelude is a great car to drive. It is not has decent speed, but handles phenomenaly, & cruises effortlessly on the highway. You'll enjoy your car!

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • prelude97prelude97 Posts: 6
    Its the 'ole slapstick automatic. It actually gets out of the gate quite nicely with the stick.
  • timothyawtimothyaw Posts: 148
    Congraulations on your Prelude! Yeah a 97/87k is nothing. This car is a blast to drive. Just take care of it, and it'll take care of you.

    Oh nyc, my car has a build date of July 01. So your car was built after mine :)
  • prelude97prelude97 Posts: 6
    So far it has been nuthin but fun...once Im in it. See, Im an old guy at 45 and theres only about 6 inches of clearence between the bottom of the steering wheel and the seat and thats with the wheel all the way up and the seat back all the way. Its a little tough for this old man to get in. But once Im in it, its great..!! :)
  • pointatobpointatob Posts: 30
    congrats NYC!

    babies are lots of fun. remember, they only face rearwards for the first year. after that, it will be easier to fit as a family in the prelude. so don't sell it in the first year 'cause you think it's too cramped!

    i've managed to make it through two iterations of rearward facing kiddos and pressure from the in-laws without selling my first baby.

    good luck!
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,260
    Thanks so very much for you kind words.

    There's no way I'm selling my Prelude! I'm sure if I take the baby by myself somewhere that I'll be able to fit the rear facing child seat in my Prelude (with the front seat pushed far forward).

    Lol regarding pressure. My Mom told me once that "no grandchild of hers is going to be in your Honda. It is snall and unsafe."

    My response: "Ma, do you think if the Prelude was unsafe that I would be driving it? Do you really think I would want to put my son in any kind of danger? If you think my Prelude is unsafe, then buy me a new car. Or if you don't want to do that, you get a new car and give me your BMW (2005 530iA) for the remainder of its lease."

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • timothyawtimothyaw Posts: 148
    Hahhahaha that was a good one about taking that BMW 530iA off her hands. I wouldn't mind taking it off her hands! What did she say by the way, when you proposed that?
  • jhawk901jhawk901 Posts: 1
    hey guys! Im a new prelude owner and i was wonderin if i got a good deal. It's a base 01 prelude with 50,000 miles for $14,000. Also was wonderin where i could get an OEM spoiler to add on. Thanks for the input
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,260
    congrats on your new purchase! Is you car stick or automatic? What color is it? Did you buy from a dealer or private owner? Check out handaaccessories thaty seem to have reasonable prices lots of honda parts.

    She suggested I use my sister's 2000 VW Jetta GLS VR6 (slushbox, pitches & rolls, not my cup of tea) for the time being. My sister lives in the city and rarely uses her car.

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • arssa2020arssa2020 Posts: 5
    Hello all
    i am looking to buy a used prelude, years 97-02
    i am looking for a good car with low milage, which year model should i target? whats the difference between SH and the base model STD?
    i heard the auto trans on the prelud's causes some problems after 60K? should i go for the manual instead?
    Thanks for sharing your experience
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,260
    I guess the answer to your question is whatever the newest car with the least amount of mileage you can afford is. One of the beauties of the Prelude is that it remained relatively unchanged from 1997 - 2001 (it's last year of production, not 2002). Aside from a few exterior color changes, a slight change to the grill, and different seat fabrics the cars are all pretty much the same.

    As with any used car, make sure you have it checked out by a mechanic. I'd want the car to be relatively stock, maybe just an intake & exhaust, but no body kits with huge spoilers. Make sure the owner has paperwork for the car, receipts, and a clean title.

    I strongly reccomend you look for a car with a manual transmission! It is a great stick to drive with precise gates and an easy clutch to modulate.

    Differences between base Preludes & Type SH models. I'm doing this from memory (just shows what a loser I really am :P ) so I may miss something. There were A LOT more base Preludes produced than Type SH models. The Type SH will command a higher premium if you're looking at the same year car with similar mileage. The major difference is that the Type SH Prelude came equipped with Honda's Active Torque Transfer System (ATTS). In hard cornering, ATTS car transfer up to 80% of the power to the outside wheel to counteract a FWD car's tendency to understeer. The Type SH also came with a standard rear spoiler, different wheels, body colored underside molding (base car gets black), a leather wrapped shift knob, & puddle lights on the inside of the doors.

    Is the Type SH worth it? Not really. Besides the additional cost of a Type SH Prelude vs. a base Prelude, if the clutch has to be replaced (as it did in my '01 Type SH) it will cost A LOT more due to the fact that the ATTS unit has to be taken out and re-installed (extra 5 hours in labor alone).

    Don't get me wrong, I love my Milano Red 2001 Type SH Prelude. I just did a round trip NY to Pittsburgh, PA trip this weekend. It still impresses me with over 70,500 miles on the clock.

    ANy more questions, let me know :)

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,260
    did a great retrospect of the Prelude that's still on the server.

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • 5speedguy5speedguy Posts: 12

    Does anyone know the weight of the OEM wheels on the '93 Prelude Si 4WS? I want to replace them with lighter weight (yet also inexpensive) wheels so I'd like to know the weight of my existing wheels. I haven't been successful getting that info from the Prelude manual, Honda or the I-net. Can anyone help with the weight? Also--any suggestions on wheels?
  • prelude97prelude97 Posts: 6
    ....I noticed you recommend manual transmission in the Prelude,,The one I just got is an autostick and it does shift how would I say....differently....I guess the word is than my other cars. It seems to shift a second too soon or a second too late if you know what Im saying. Especially at slower speeds. This being my first ever Honda, are the auto trans known to be troublesome? Or do they just shift a little harder than the cruising "vessel" type cars I was always accustomed to?
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,260
    Your auto tranny shifting a second too soon or too late is because it is an automatic transmission with a torque converter. You tell the transmission (computer) what gear you want to put it in, it has to decide if it will let you, then puts the car in tyhe gear you selected (this all happens in miliseconds). Upshifts and downshifts for me (and other manual drivers) are instantaneous (for all intensive puprposes).

    I think a lot of the earlier problems were due to the fact that an automatic transmission wasn't meant to be mated to an engine that revs so high. People would drive it like they stole it (best way to enjoy the Prelude) and fry the torque converter.

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • 530ir1150r530ir1150r Posts: 263
    Find a used wheel dealer, determine the shipping weight for the stock wheel, then the shipping weight for any wheel you are interested in can tell you how much lighter it is.
  • 530ir1150r530ir1150r Posts: 263
    The prelude automatic transmission has a memory. The more you drive it the more you will like it.
  • No I don't have that problem with mine, but it has been giving me problems with the distributer and rotor. If it starts to feel like its losing power, check the fuel filter. Mine was running like crap until I changed it.
  • pointatobpointatob Posts: 30
    i've managed to fit some fairly large and bulky items in my prelude over the years, but what i saw today goes beyond anything that i personally had thought of to transport in the 'lude: i'm driving in town today and see a black 1995 or 1996 ish prelude (with nice customized wheels and spoiler) with his sunroof open cruising in the same direction. jutting out of his sunroof were two 4X4 wood beams of 8' to 10' in length! he turned and i was able to guess that he had the 4X4s resting in the front passenger floorwell and along the front edge of the open sunroof.

    now that i have not tried. it looked a little bit like the delorean in "back to the Future" with the large hook standing 6' over the car roof....
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,260
    It never ceases to amaze me what I can actually fit into my Prelude. Trips to Costco are never a problem.

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • prodj49prodj49 Posts: 5
    I'm going to buy a 86 prelude and I was wondering what the horsepower would be if no modifications were done to the car?
  • prodj49prodj49 Posts: 5
    Anyone know where I could buy a colored valve cover for an 86 prelude?
  • prodj49prodj49 Posts: 5
    gmercury im getting the same car and i have the same questions
  • hammydudehammydude Posts: 3
    this forum confuses me
  • hammydudehammydude Posts: 3
    that seems like terrible gas mileage
  • 86prelude86prelude Posts: 1
    I am the original owner of a 1986 Honda Prelude 2.0 SI. The car has about 75,000 miles on it. The body is in good shape with two rust spots near the rear window corners. I just recently started to have some problems and now I'm being pressured to get rid of the car (by my wife who thinks the car is unsafe). It has three problems:
    1. The rack and pinion is leaking power steering fluid, about 16 oz every 2 weeks, ($600 parts and labor); The engine will not start on hot days if the engine is hot (mechanic thinks it is the fuel relay), and the ratchet on the emergency brake needs some work. The total for the last two items is about $400. Otherwise the car has never had any serious problems. It has a new timing belt, new tires, new brakes, new exhaust system, and the engine always runs fine. The total for repairs will be about $1100 to get these problems fixed. I really like the car, and after 20 yrs. have trouble letting it go. Does anyone think these repairs can be done significantly cheaper? If not, is there a market for this car? My plan would be to put it on ebay and see what happens (listing the problems).
  • Hello--My daughter bought a 93 Prelude for her first car a few months ago and now the air conditioner went out. It is blowing hot air. Also, the heater is blowing hot air even when on cool. Any suggestions what this could be? There is freon in the air conditioner and there are no leaks. Could this be a switch? The car is a salvage (we got it for dirt cheap) due to the dash being stolen. There is a brand new dash board and the kid we bought it from had said that sometime the air conditioner didn't work. Help! It is 113% degrees here and she can't drive it. She is gettin her license on 8/15/06. Any suggestions would be most appreciated. I really don't have the money to take it to a shop and I am not convinced it is the compressor.


  • thexchadxthexchadx Posts: 1
    Is there a product out there to convert the open space under the CD player into a lockbox?
  • katiej2katiej2 Posts: 1
    Hello! I am so glad to see another Prelude owner with my same model! I LOVE my '86 2.0 Si though some people think I am a little crazy with it. My boyfriend and I even did body work on it last summer to repair the rust (which of course returned in a lesser state). I paid 1500 for mine two years ago at 112K miles and have put over 30K miles on it. The only problems I have had with my car relate to rust - i.e. I had holes in the gas tank which my mechanic patched, and when I had to do the axles I had to replace the rusty control arms because the first mechanic I went to couldn't get around them and screwed them up trying to. My Lude runs great and is fun to drive and quick. I haven't had any problems with the car not starting, ever. I have only fixed regular wearing out parts. Just recently though it has started to make a noise when steering - very sharp turns i.e. pulling into a parking space. I am wondering if it's a rack and pinion thing - any insight on this? My mechanic checked everything underneath... wasn't the ball joints or tie rods. Let me know what you think - I have never done any power steering work on a car either, have no idea what that costs though I do have a great mechanic. However like you I have issues with how much money I am willing to spend on this car as I would like to retire it next spring and just keep it as a second car. I paid 1500 bucks for it and see no reason to get rid of it! People in the know love the Prelude, as do Honda freaks... esp. if yours has no rust I would never get rid of it! I actually had a mechanic offer to buy it from me when I wasn't sure what to do with the control arms problem. As he said "you don't see many of those anymore!"


  • prodj49prodj49 Posts: 5
    It is rust free and the owner put in a brand new transmission where I could get a colored valve cover for it?
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