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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've got a 2012 Civic LX coupd with like 40k miles on it. It's a good commuter car and it gets decent gas mileage buy I'm wanting something faster and much sharper looking. I'm not super keen on the look of my car either, and I'm really not wanting to drop thousands of dollars on it to get performance out of my little R18 Engine. I don't like the Si civics either so no one suggest them. Anyways, I'm wanting to sell my civic and get a prelude.

What years should I stay clear of or buy?
Is driving a manual annoying at all, especially on road trips? (I've never driven one daily)
What's the maintenance like?
What's the comfort and road noise like?
Is the aftermarket support any good?
Are parts still around for the car and it's engine?
Does it have a good A/C? lol
Is it practical as a daily driver?
Is it reliable?
Also every prelude I find online has 100k plus miles. Does it have much life in it after that? I know it's a honda but sometimes people drive them into the ground.

Is there any other advice y'all have to give or some tips on other questions I should ask?

I really love the look of this car and the fact it's a two door. It's pretty much my dream car.
 

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1999 Prelude. F20B/K20A hybrid rebuild
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Happy to hear you’re really wanting a Prelude!
-Not really any specific years to stay away from, of course the 93-96’s only the VTEC model’s had the 195HP H22 motor, the base and Si models only had a non-Vtec motors about 150HP. All 97-01’s came with a 200HP H22 motor (United States).
-Manual is the best version you’ll want to get, the automatic’s on the 97-01 are NOTORIOUS for going out, those auto’s are VERY weak and only give problems and are not as fun to drive as the manual (i know from experience, i auto to manual swapped mine) as far as roadtrips, the gearing is short on both auto and manual, 60mph is about 3000rpm’s, 70mph is about 3500
-Maintenance is Low.. BUT only if stuff has BEEN maintained... i say that because these cars are all 20+ years old, even if a previous owner replaced a few things, there’s a chance there’s some other things that haven’t been replaced. For example, i fully rebuilt my motor and replaced every single seal and hose, i haven’t needed to do any maintenance whatsoever besides regular changing oil and stuff.
-Road noise is very low especially compared to other lighter little Hondas, as long as the suspension is good it’s a quiet ride.
-Aftermarket support is great to an extent, you’ll be able to find the basic stuff you need easily (Coilovers, Intakes, Exhaust, Suspension) but there’s little stuff that might be hard to find. (Stay AWAY from a Type SH model)
-Plenty of parts are still around and obtainable from a parts store
-AC is always dependent on the condition, it should blow ice cold if working
-Very very practical and great daily, if it’s been maintained
- Very much so! I bought my 99’ with 171K and that engine lasted me until 250,000 until i was racing it and it blew up (can consider it my fault for abusing a high mile engine lol)
As long as it’s not showing signs of fatigue or abuse like smoking or hesitation it will pretty much last forever if taken care of
-Not much tips, just take care of ( or just inspect) the common leak areas, on a H22 motor it would be the Vtec solenoid seal, Distributor O Ring, rear Cam seal. The tedious seals that fail on high-milage cars are usually the Oil cooler O-Ring, maybe the oil cooler hoses, the balance shafts seals, and the front & rear main seal. Usually those don’t go out but it’s always possible. Pretty much, if it’s not leaking drops onto the ground, it should be fine.
Other than that they make great daily’s, i drive mine every single day without hesitation and it’s never left me on the side if the road once. The performance is great and can definitely surprise most cars, if you get a H22 Prelude you’ll be more than happy with the power compared to your civic. They feel amazing to drive, definitely one of the best handling cars of its time. Very very smooth. Best of luck in your search, hopefully all this helped!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Happy to hear you’re really wanting a Prelude!
-Not really any specific years to stay away from, of course the 93-96’s only the VTEC model’s had the 195HP H22 motor, the base and Si models only had a non-Vtec motors about 150HP. All 97-01’s came with a 200HP H22 motor (United States).
-Manual is the best version you’ll want to get, the automatic’s on the 97-01 are NOTORIOUS for going out, those auto’s are VERY weak and only give problems and are not as fun to drive as the manual (i know from experience, i auto to manual swapped mine) as far as roadtrips, the gearing is short on both auto and manual, 60mph is about 3000rpm’s, 70mph is about 3500
-Maintenance is Low.. BUT only if stuff has BEEN maintained... i say that because these cars are all 20+ years old, even if a previous owner replaced a few things, there’s a chance there’s some other things that haven’t been replaced. For example, i fully rebuilt my motor and replaced every single seal and hose, i haven’t needed to do any maintenance whatsoever besides regular changing oil and stuff.
-Road noise is very low especially compared to other lighter little Hondas, as long as the suspension is good it’s a quiet ride.
-Aftermarket support is great to an extent, you’ll be able to find the basic stuff you need easily (Coilovers, Intakes, Exhaust, Suspension) but there’s little stuff that might be hard to find. (Stay AWAY from a Type SH model)
-Plenty of parts are still around and obtainable from a parts store
-AC is always dependent on the condition, it should blow ice cold if working
-Very very practical and great daily, if it’s been maintained
- Very much so! I bought my 99’ with 171K and that engine lasted me until 250,000 until i was racing it and it blew up (can consider it my fault for abusing a high mile engine lol)
As long as it’s not showing signs of fatigue or abuse like smoking or hesitation it will pretty much last forever if taken care of
-Not much tips, just take care of ( or just inspect) the common leak areas, on a H22 motor it would be the Vtec solenoid seal, Distributor O Ring, rear Cam seal. The tedious seals that fail on high-milage cars are usually the Oil cooler O-Ring, maybe the oil cooler hoses, the balance shafts seals, and the front & rear main seal. Usually those don’t go out but it’s always possible. Pretty much, if it’s not leaking drops onto the ground, it should be fine.
Other than that they make great daily’s, i drive mine every single day without hesitation and it’s never left me on the side if the road once. The performance is great and can definitely surprise most cars, if you get a H22 Prelude you’ll be more than happy with the power compared to your civic. They feel amazing to drive, definitely one of the best handling cars of its time. Very very smooth. Best of luck in your search, hopefully all this helped!
This helped a lot, thank you. I was not aware of the issues with the Type SH (I just looked it up and jeez) That being said does the base handle still pretty good? My civic handles reaaaallly good and I'm hoping that when I go to a prelude it'll handle even better

Also one more kinda random thing. Have people converted the hydraulic power steering to electric power steering at all?
 

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Happy to hear you’re really wanting a Prelude!
-Not really any specific years to stay away from, of course the 93-96’s only the VTEC model’s had the 195HP H22 motor, the base and Si models only had a non-Vtec motors about 150HP. All 97-01’s came with a 200HP H22 motor (United States).
-Manual is the best version you’ll want to get, the automatic’s on the 97-01 are NOTORIOUS for going out, those auto’s are VERY weak and only give problems and are not as fun to drive as the manual (i know from experience, i auto to manual swapped mine) as far as roadtrips, the gearing is short on both auto and manual, 60mph is about 3000rpm’s, 70mph is about 3500
-Maintenance is Low.. BUT only if stuff has BEEN maintained... i say that because these cars are all 20+ years old, even if a previous owner replaced a few things, there’s a chance there’s some other things that haven’t been replaced. For example, i fully rebuilt my motor and replaced every single seal and hose, i haven’t needed to do any maintenance whatsoever besides regular changing oil and stuff.
-Road noise is very low especially compared to other lighter little Hondas, as long as the suspension is good it’s a quiet ride.
-Aftermarket support is great to an extent, you’ll be able to find the basic stuff you need easily (Coilovers, Intakes, Exhaust, Suspension) but there’s little stuff that might be hard to find. (Stay AWAY from a Type SH model)
-Plenty of parts are still around and obtainable from a parts store
-AC is always dependent on the condition, it should blow ice cold if working
-Very very practical and great daily, if it’s been maintained
- Very much so! I bought my 99’ with 171K and that engine lasted me until 250,000 until i was racing it and it blew up (can consider it my fault for abusing a high mile engine lol)
As long as it’s not showing signs of fatigue or abuse like smoking or hesitation it will pretty much last forever if taken care of
-Not much tips, just take care of ( or just inspect) the common leak areas, on a H22 motor it would be the Vtec solenoid seal, Distributor O Ring, rear Cam seal. The tedious seals that fail on high-milage cars are usually the Oil cooler O-Ring, maybe the oil cooler hoses, the balance shafts seals, and the front & rear main seal. Usually those don’t go out but it’s always possible. Pretty much, if it’s not leaking drops onto the ground, it should be fine.
Other than that they make great daily’s, i drive mine every single day without hesitation and it’s never left me on the side if the road once. The performance is great and can definitely surprise most cars, if you get a H22 Prelude you’ll be more than happy with the power compared to your civic. They feel amazing to drive, definitely one of the best handling cars of its time. Very very smooth. Best of luck in your search, hopefully all this helped!
Why stay away from Type SH?
 

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1999 Prelude. F20B/K20A hybrid rebuild
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Why stay away from Type SH?
Well, they would still be great for someone committed to spending more money on maintenance in comparison to a base model and have a more-rare Prelude. But Type SH’s have a LOT of things that are discontinued and way more hard to find than base models. For instance a lot of important suspension parts can’t be found/bought new anymore like front upper and lower control arms, radius arms, spindles, even tie rods, ATTS sensors aswell. Most SH people are forced to find all of those used, which isn’t horrible, but if you had a base model you could just buy all of that stuff brand new in new condition.
The oil cooler location is another thing that kinda F***’s the owners especially if they need to replace the oil cooler O-ring or the knock sensor, it almost forces them to have to take off the entire intake manifold to do so which on a base model wouldn’t have to do that and could replace those 2 things in easily 10-20 minutes.
There’s more tedious stuff than that but those are some main things
Type SH’s are definitely cool, but seeing the owners on the Prelude pages become desperate looking for simple parts that base models can easily find new definitely shows that they’re not the car for everybody.
 

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1999 Prelude. F20B/K20A hybrid rebuild
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This helped a lot, thank you. I was not aware of the issues with the Type SH (I just looked it up and jeez) That being said does the base handle still pretty good? My civic handles reaaaallly good and I'm hoping that when I go to a prelude it'll handle even better

Also one more kinda random thing. Have people converted the hydraulic power steering to electric power steering at all?
Oh yeah Bases handle just as amazing, the only big difference with the Type SH’s is how they accelerate out of corners and how the wheels get powered by the ATTS system. But bases still are just as good, my base is setup as a street/autocross setup only on coilovers and upgraded bushings and on my local autocross track i’m on the top-3 fastest times. All the other cars are turbo 250-350HP out of a Turbo WRX, Turbo Veloster, Focus ST, i’m the only all-motor car with “only” 200hp and i’m in 2nd place lol.
And yes people have converted their power steering to a electric pump, it’s not “common” but it’s definitely do-able for anyone that knows how to make it work. I think people use a toyota MR2 pump for that conversion but i could be wrong
 

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1989 Accord LXi Coupe; 1989 Prelude 2.0s; 1964 Dodge Dart GT: 1993 Kawasaki ZX-11; 1982 Honda CB900
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Manual is the best version you’ll want to get,
IMHO, this is a personal choice. My 89 is AT, raises some eyebrows when Folks find out. The ATs are rare, and for me, if I need a gearbox to play with, thats what my Motorcycle is for.... Years 86-89 are rock solid and my AT is around 210,000 miles and still shifting rock solid.
 

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Only problem I had with my 99 manual with 90k miles on it now, was at about 60k miles the auto-tensioner for the timing belt died. It lost fluid for some reason and collapsed and let the belt get floppy. Luckily I caught it as it was failing at a stop light idling on me and I limped it into a parking lot and then got a tow back home. Tore into it and found the problem. 2 auto tensioners later I was back on the road. (Yes, I absolutely f-ed up the first one when I was sure I had it seated in the correct place and pulled the cage....just to find out that it wasn't seated) So back to the dealership I went for another new part....

Here recently I had the abs light come on, but that turned out to be two severed wires under the hood fuse box where a rat decided it was a nice place for a nest. I've since repaired both wires and the light went out....then I proceeded to evict his lil ass and made sure he don't come back. He even had a nest sitting on the blower doors that drop down and open when you take it off of recirculate. Lil m-fer was making himself right at home. I have some cabin air filters on order now. I got real lucky and caught most of his antics before it got real bad. Could have burned up a blower motor if I had opened that fresh air door and let his nest get sucked thru the blower squirrel cage. Lil cock sucker has half a bag of poision blocks to be chewing on all strewn about the back yard now. Enjoy m'fer!
 

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I've got a 2012 Civic LX coupd with like 40k miles on it. It's a good commuter car and it gets decent gas mileage buy I'm wanting something faster and much sharper looking. I'm not super keen on the look of my car either, and I'm really not wanting to drop thousands of dollars on it to get performance out of my little R18 Engine. I don't like the Si civics either so no one suggest them. Anyways, I'm wanting to sell my civic and get a prelude.

What years should I stay clear of or buy?
Is driving a manual annoying at all, especially on road trips? (I've never driven one daily)
What's the maintenance like?
What's the comfort and road noise like?
Is the aftermarket support any good?
Are parts still around for the car and it's engine?
Does it have a good A/C? lol
Is it practical as a daily driver?
Is it reliable?
Also every prelude I find online has 100k plus miles. Does it have much life in it after that? I know it's a honda but sometimes people drive them into the ground.

Is there any other advice y'all have to give or some tips on other questions I should ask?

I really love the look of this car and the fact it's a two door. It's pretty much my dream car.
Preludes are awesome but...
You need to keep the Civic so you have a beater to drive while the Prelude is down for repairs...
It is inevitable that a sports car with this kind of age will need many of its systems restored.
Get ready to put new car money into an
old Prelude to daily drive it. :)
 

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I've got a 2012 Civic LX coupd with like 40k miles on it. It's a good commuter car and it gets decent gas mileage buy I'm wanting something faster and much sharper looking. I'm not super keen on the look of my car either, and I'm really not wanting to drop thousands of dollars on it to get performance out of my little R18 Engine. I don't like the Si civics either so no one suggest them. Anyways, I'm wanting to sell my civic and get a prelude.

What years should I stay clear of or buy?
Is driving a manual annoying at all, especially on road trips? (I've never driven one daily)
What's the maintenance like?
What's the comfort and road noise like?
Is the aftermarket support any good?
Are parts still around for the car and it's engine?
Does it have a good A/C? lol
Is it practical as a daily driver?
Is it reliable?
Also every prelude I find online has 100k plus miles. Does it have much life in it after that? I know it's a honda but sometimes people drive them into the ground.

Is there any other advice y'all have to give or some tips on other questions I should ask?

I really love the look of this car and the fact it's a two door. It's pretty much my dream car.
I have a 1992 Honda Prelude with 150,000 miles. 5spd stick that I’m the second owner of. The original owner was a postal worker who treated it well snd very well maintained. I’m fixing up some things on it and was planning to sell since I already have a Prelude with 122,000 miles. Mileage would be the last of my concerns in buying a Honda. I’m more concerned about rust. I’m still able to find parts. Email me if you are interested [email protected]. I’m in Ohio
 
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