1989 Honda Prelude Reviews - Page 4 of 14

1989 Honda Prelude Si 2.0L DOHC from North America

Model year1989
Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership2001
Most recent year of ownership2002
Engine and transmission 2.0L DOHC Manual
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 6 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.2 / 10
Distance when acquired199999 miles
Most recent distance199999 miles
Previous carFord Ranger

Summary:

Nice, Sleek..

Faults:

Well when I first got this car the feller who sold it to me drove it to my house and then it didn't run again after that until I fixed it later.

The problem with that was that the rotor button on the distributor was not screwed down, and it was just slipping around in the distributor. I got a screw put it in and it started right up.

The Clutch went up in it.

The Sun roof leaked.

I had to replace the CV axles.

I had to replace the exhaust.

Odometer didn't work.

General Comments:

This was a fairly decent car, it was very quick which I liked, it looked nice too. I loved the way it handled on the turns, it kinda hugged the ground because of its' wide stance, there was not much body roll at all.

All in all after I got all the initial headaches fixed it was a pretty reliable car. Great on gas!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 19th October, 2007

1989 Honda Prelude Si 4ws 2.0 from Australia and New Zealand

Model year1989
Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership2006
Most recent year of ownership2007
Engine and transmission 2.0 Automatic
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.5 / 10
Distance when acquired235000 kilometres
Most recent distance246000 kilometres
Previous carMitsubishi Mirage

Summary:

Great fun and highly recommended

Faults:

Boot on CV shaft needs replacing.

General Comments:

I have had around 70 different cars in my time. This one takes the cake, and handles like a dream. Drives very well, smooth, very quick and safe for overtaking. Has proved to be wonderfully reliable and economical; returns around 8litres/100ks regularly.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th July, 2007

1989 Honda Prelude Si 4ws 2.0 from North America

Model year1989
Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership2006
Most recent year of ownership2007
Engine and transmission 2.0 Automatic
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Dealer Service marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.4 / 10
Distance when acquired231000 kilometres
Most recent distance256500 kilometres
Previous carHonda Civic

Summary:

We'll be together forever!

Faults:

Keep in mind the car is 18 yrs old.

Temperature control lever was seized.

Replaced Muffler.

Replaced Transmission axle seal.

Replaced Brakes.

General Comments:

Fun to drive.

4ws lets you take sharp turns a fast speeds. And I can turn the car right around in my driveway. Can't do that with any of our other cars.

Drives smooth.

Back seat a little tight for anyone taller than 4'.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 5th July, 2007

1989 Honda Prelude 4 Wheel Steer 2.0 from Australia and New Zealand

Model year1989
Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership2005
Most recent year of ownership2007
Engine and transmission 2.0 Manual
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 2 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.0 / 10
Distance when acquired170000 kilometres
Most recent distance230000 kilometres
Previous carBMW 3 Series

Summary:

I'd buy another in a minute

Faults:

Nothing.

General Comments:

We bought this car to go exploring NZ on holiday, and have since moved here, so we kept it.

We paid $1000 for it, and that was 2 years and 60,000kms ago.

It has had regular oil changes, and new tires - that's it (time to do the cambelt!!)

Everything works (air con, cruise, power roof/windows etc.)

Bought excellent condition matching pair of front seats for $25 from a wrecker's yard - the old ones had cigarette burns in them.

If it died tomorrow, I'd cry, but it wouldn't owe us a thing. It's been fantastic, and great fun to drive.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 22nd May, 2007

12th Aug 2008, 13:23

Totally agree, best car I've ever had, trying to buy a spare car for the wife. (spares parts in the future)

1989 Honda Prelude ES 2.2 from North America

Model year1989
Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership2005
Most recent year of ownership2007
Engine and transmission 2.2 Manual
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
10.0 / 10
Distance when acquired190000 miles
Most recent distance257000 miles
Previous carHonda Accord

Summary:

Best investment since my kids!!

Faults:

Battery failed.. left the car sitting too long.

General Comments:

This car kicks butt. It handles well and uses little gas, but is still very quick.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th May, 2007

1989 Honda Prelude from Australia and New Zealand

Model year1989
Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership2005
Most recent year of ownership2006
Engine and transmission Manual
Performance marks 5 / 10
Reliability marks 2 / 10
Comfort marks 6 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 2 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
3.8 / 10
Distance when acquired265480 kilometres
Most recent distance272780 kilometres
Previous carHolden Berlina

Summary:

Unreliable mechanical nightmare that's a disgrace to the automotive industry

Faults:

* Suspension required replacing.

* Leaking Engine Cooling ditribution pipe behind engine required replacing.

* Engine pulley on main A/C, Pump, Power Steering, Generator etc, dropped out of the engine bay, nearly resulting in a serious accident.

* Wiring loom required replacing.

* Engine warning light constantly came on which would put the ECU into idle home mode, causing any engine performance at all to be negligable.

* Every single hose connection required replacing (Honda seem to think wire clips instead of hose clamps are satisfactory and let me tell you, there absolutely 100% NOT vehicle worthy at all).

* Ignition switch caused trouble with starting the vehicle (If you still own one of these cars and your car will not start for no reason at all, then try turning the key slightly and don't turn it all the way (as you would a normal car), I discovered this allowed me to start the car. I'd imagine like nearly every part in these vehicles they wear out faster than normal cars over time).

* Power steering system required practically an entire replacement job.

* A host of less major things relating to body work.

General Comments:

In all fairness to Honda and to those who love them, a new Honda (or so I'm told), is a dream to own and regular maintenance will give you a good vehicle for a few years. However as I discovered from talking with many other Honda owners while I owned the Prelude, most Honda's over 150 000 KM's have a strong tendancy to experience problems. (In case your thinking it, no most cars will not experience problems with age if there well maintained).

When I bought the Prelude it was solely because I'd never had a Sporty style car and wanted to try something out that would suit my budget. Now, some people will state that you get what you pay for, however other Prelude owners I talked to who had payed a lot more for there Preludes experienced at least a few problems like those I had experienced, which frankly I find rather poor for a vehicle in this class.

My first priority is surely everyone's must be when they buy a vehicle: "Is this fit for purpose". In other words, will it do the job and while doing the job is it reliable?

The Prelude is absolutely the most unreliable vehicle I have ever owned. When they worked, the features like, power steering, cruise control, A/C, Pop up lights, were really groovy (the 4 wheel steer really didn't give me any more performance over a Toyota Camry I had owned, but was a lot better than the Holden Berlina), were really nice. It's a shame it was just so unreliable.

To anyone thinking about purchasing one of these, I cannot recommend it strongly enough. Make sure you have the vehicle thoroughly examined by a good /trustworthy mechanic as it's bound to save you many dollars and avoid a lot of dull waiting for tow vehicles.

After this vehicle I went to a Toyota Corolla and frankly for reliability and overall performance, I'd take the Corolla any day. Unlike the Prelude, the Corolla never missed a beat and has been the most trusty faithful car I have owned to date.

If you're an enthusiast, then perhaps you may find this vehicle fun, however my advice is to purchase 'The Dog and Lemon Guide' and check out what it says about Honda Preludes around this year. Basically everything it states that has been well known to go wrong, went wrong with mine and I wish I'd seen this write up before purchasing mine as it would have saved me a lot of trouble and dollars.

I'll end this review by giving the D&LG overall rating: "AVOID LIKE THE PLAGUE".

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 6th May, 2007

8th May 2007, 13:09

Man if I ever bought a 16 year old car and had to change the oil I would be pissed. You almost have 200,000 miles and you sit here going crazy!! what did you expect for a old car? Fresh out of the package? Right!

5th Jul 2007, 21:08

No idea what level of bad luck someone would have to have to experience all those problems with this car.

My '89 Prelude SI with 256,500 on it has almost all original parts. Did replace the muffler, brakes & transmission seal. I'm not complaining about that at all... it is 18 years young. Just wish the previous two owners loved it as much as me, & maintained it properly.

I would not hesitate to get another one.

Average review marks: 7.9 / 10, based on 61 reviews