The car is superb; value for money. Of course you can't race it alongside a Ferrari or Porsche, but it's sporty enough for what it's intended to be.
Some cars may suffer from bad shake (which has got nothing to do with "stability", since I find the road-holding fairly good at high speed, depending on the rubbers) due to the faulty 4-wheel steering system resulting from poor maintenance or being badly repaired following an accident.
I'm very happy with the car despite having used it for more than 15 years.
Hey I just brought a 1988 prelude 2.0 SI 4WS (it got a little accident) but it runs really good so far. IT's near 300000km.. I wonder how long the car can last? This Prelude been really nicely taking care of each year.. but the paint inst so good. how much for a paint job max?..
My Prelude was fortunate to have a conservative driver for all its 43K miles. I bought it in 2001 with 43K miles and I have to say I was impressed. The paint was horrible, but nothing Maaco can fix, well I didn't use Maaco, but got the paint well done. The black paint on the window jams flakes, but it got fixed. I have been able to max my car out at 120mph on I-10 in Florida. My car now has about 85K and the timing belt has been changed and have been happy with it since. It has an automatic starter, has a better sound system, and very smooth.
My Prelude is a JDM (Japan Domestic Model) year 1986. Condition is still perfect; in fact I did some modifications too. I love this car so much because you can do a lot of adjustment of alignment (toe, camber & caster). This car is good if you love fast corners. You can do so many different kinds of set-ups to suit your driving skill. Preludepower.com is the best place to know from A-Z about this car (Malaysian Prelude).
When these Honda's (4WS Preludes) were new, my boss bought one.
He was a bit of a lead foot back then, and he drove from Nyngan to Bourke in one hour.
That is a 200klm stretch of almost dead straight road, so he AVERAGED 200klm per hour.
I wouldn't think that you could do that in an unstable car!
BTW, back then nobody knew how to do a wheel alignment on a 4WS car properly, so he had to do a lot of looking around to find some one to do a proper wheel alignment on it when it needed one. So maybe it is still hard to find a person with the right experience to do a proper wheel alignment on a 4WS Prelude. Lets face it, there STILL aren't many 4WS cars produced.
I bought a 3G prelude in 2001 with 87k on the clock to replace my 2G prelude which was vandalised outside my house a month earlier.
I commute to London everyday cruising at 100mph along the M2, and reaching 125mph occasionally when I have to defend myself against pretenders, without the pedal touching the floor, I might add. I haven't as yet flatten the pedal to the floor. I am sure I will get close to 140mph if I do, the max on the speedo.
I have a 88 Si 4 wheel steering, 90 (that's my "parts car"), and just sold a 89 s w/carbs (dual side draft carbs that is). My 89 hauled major a** and I never once lost a race even to a 05 mustang gt v8! My 88 4ws Si is obviously fuel injected, has had major work just recently done (passenger front was destroyed, only had a quick fix (i.e. spot welds) to get it up and running, the strut tower on said side actually began to separate on me while driving and was close to 6 inches wide. got it fixed and now like new, the right way.), and will kick, but just the same. The 90 I don't know about, due to the fact I bought it for a parts car for the interior, sunroof and such, it has a blown motor the 2.1 Si. Neither of my cars have ever let me down and never have ceased to amaze me or let me down in any way, in the power dept especially. Even after a bought my 4ws, pre strut tower fix my car also never had any alignment problems or "steering wheel shakes". I had removed the power steering system completely from the 89 and it was easy as can be to turn or turn on a dime. I don't understand or know why you are having problems like that, but I just thought id put in my 2 cents, lol. oh, by the way, bout the 88 and 89 have complete coil over and camber kits. Both were lowered, 89 was 3 inches, and 88 is 2 1/2 inches with a body kit.
I have driven an automatic 88 Prelude for the past year and a half. I love it! It's in very good condition considering it's as old as I am. I have two minor complaints:
1. The engine light comes on whenever the engine wasn't started warm.
2. When parked uphill, the sunroof tends to accumulated water inside the roof, and then dump it on the passenger when I start moving. It's no fun for the passenger.
Aside from that, it's a sturdy car. I accidentally slid into another car at about 15-20 MPH recently, and the only damage was a bent licence plate. ABS would have been nice, but the crash was unavoidable. :(
Although I do wish it was a 5-speed...
Anybody know how well the A/C's work in these older model preludes? I have an 89 and just had the A/C compressor replaced and charged and although it blows "cool" not cold, the car doesn't cool down enough for a comfortable degree? How is your preludes air? I have a warranty, but before I go complaining is this just what I can expect out of an older car? Other than that I LOVE the car... grips the road good and really fun to drive, if I could get cold air like the newer cars I would be in heaven!!!
Preludes due to the large windows do suffer from heat. I have a 3rd gen prelude also and find that the air distribution is mainly in the centere vents.
But I think yours need a check up to ensure the compressor doesn't turn off too soon. Perhaps a thermostat correction is required or an undercharged system.
I recommend taking it to a proper honda dealer to get recharged as the type and amount of gas is best known by your dealer.
As these still use the old gas (ozone unfriendly) a conversion is required. Perhaps due to the conversion the cooling becomes not as cold as the it was not originally intended to use the new gas. Though I'm not an expert that reasoning is a possibility. From experience I have a an old Ford Falcon that I had converted to use the new gas and I too noticed it was not as cold.