Driving Experience

Prelude at Monitor Pass

Fuel Mileage
With an EPA fuel mileage of 22 mpg city/27 mpg highway this sporty car is not a gas guzzler. I have gotten 29 mpg on two different trips to Los Angeles. Road & Track magazine estimates the Prelude's range to be 360 miles (15.9 gallon tank). On one trip to Los Angeles I drove from Davis to Sylmar, just over the Grapevine, a total of 376 miles, on one tank of gas.

Top Speed
The Prelude's top speed is 144 mph, while magazine articles put it anywhere from 138 to 143 mph. I have driven it a just under 150 mph, at redline, and the car felt great, although I did have the suspension upgrades on the car at the time.

Handling is excellent. My GTech Pro says cornering G's reaches 1.1 G's, but of that 0.1 to 0.2 G's could be attributed to body roll and banking. After driving the car for a while you start to take it for granted.  When I drove my friend's Subaru wagon on a vacation trip and again when I rented a Ford Focus, I was reminded how well the Prelude handles. I had all four wheels in the Subaru squealing in a turn I hadn't even given a second thought, and the rear on the Focus would start to squeal when I turned onto a freeway onramp at a speed that I though was normal.

The car has been very reliable. The one factory recall was the ignition switch and that was taken care of.  The auto-tensioner died at about 40k mile and again at 92k mile, but that has become a well-known issue with this engine. Other than these and a torn quarter-shaft boot at around 85k mile there have been no other problems, except... I screwed up once and went to Thunderhill low on oil and drove. I didn't realize I had a problem until VTEC started shutting off in the turns. I may have damaged something that day because a few months later I had to get the rod bearings replaced. Other than that, the car is still running strong at just over 150,000 miles.