The Honda Prelude is a sports car that was produced by Honda from 1978 to 2001. It was the successor to the Honda Accord Coupe and was based on the Honda Accord platform. The Prelude was known for its handling, performance, and styling. It was also a popular choice for tuning enthusiasts. The Honda Prelude was discontinued in 2001. It was replaced by the Honda Accord Coupe.
The Prelude is fondly remembered by enthusiasts and holds a place in automotive history as a vehicle that demonstrated Honda’s engineering prowess. Its blend of performance, innovation, and reliability has left a lasting impression on those who owned or aspired to own one.
Honda Prelude Overview
The Honda Prelude is a sports coupe that was produced by the Japanese automaker Honda from 1978 to 2001. Throughout its lifespan, it went through five generations, and it was particularly noted for its innovative features and forward-thinking engineering for its time.
The Prelude was introduced in 1978 as Honda’s first attempt to enter the sporty coupe market. It was positioned to sit above the Civic and Accord in Honda’s lineup, offering a sportier and more premium experience. The name “Prelude” was chosen to signify that the vehicle was a prelude or introduction to what Honda could achieve in terms of technology and design. The Prelude’s design evolved over its life, transitioning from the boxy shapes of the late ’70s and ’80s to the more rounded and sleek designs of the ’90s. By its last generation, it had a low-slung, aerodynamic profile indicative of its sporty intentions.
Over its production span, the Prelude was offered with various engines, typically inline-4s, and became well-known for its rev-happy nature and VTEC technology in later models. This variable valve timing system improved both power and fuel efficiency and became a hallmark of Honda performance. One of the standout features of the Prelude was its handling. The car, especially in its later generations, incorporated technologies like four-wheel steering (4WS) – a system where the rear wheels could turn to aid maneuverability at both low and high speeds.
Aside from 4WS, the Prelude was often a platform where Honda tested and debuted new technologies. For instance, the 1980s saw the introduction of the mechanical fuel injection system, and the 1990s introduced the ATTS (Active Torque Transfer System) in the Type SH model, which helped improve cornering.
Honda Prelude Sales Figures
Production of the Prelude ended in 2001. By that time, the market for sporty coupes had declined, and Honda had other vehicles, like the S2000 and the more performance-oriented versions of the Civic and Accord, to cater to performance enthusiasts.