Is Honda Bringing Back The Prelude? (Here’s Hoping)

Cashing in on nostalgia, it seems, is one of the quickest ways to make a buck these days.

From video game companies re-releasing old titles (and even the craze of ‘micro consoles’ that we saw a few years ago) to food/drink products, clothing, old TV shows and more, the world seems to have a yearning for trusted, beloved brands from ‘the good old days’.

Car companies have been no exception.

Toyota did it with the Supra, and Honda as done it with the Acura Integra.

However, as any fan of 80s/90s/2000s Japanese cars will tell you, there are many other legendary badges that could be resurrected.

One such car is the Honda Prelude.

Built over five generations from the late 1979s, the Prelude was Honda’s mainstay sports/performance FWD coupe for many years. The fourth and fifth generation Preludes are particularly well remembered, and you still occasionally see them on the road.

As with many Japanese cars, the best was saved for the Japanese domestic market (learn more here about what JDM means) with the awesome “Type R that wasn’t a Type R” Honda Prelude Type S.

Another great Japanese hero, fallen by the wayside.

But is Honda planning on bringing back the Prelude?

If you’ve always been a fan of the Prelude name (as I have been for many years – one of my great regrets is not scooping up a mint condition ex-JDM Type S when I had the opportunity) then you’ll be excited to know that Honda appears primed to bring back the Prelude.

Japanese car publication ‘Best Motor Web’ has revealed that Honda has plans to resurrect the Prelude.

However, there is a catch. Well two, in fact.

Firstly, it appears that the new Prelude won’t be launching until later this decade – by 2028 at the latest (I guess that gives you time to start saving?)

Secondly – and more importantly – you won’t see a high-revving NA VTEC engine like the Preludes of old; this new model is going to be all-electric.

It sounds like Honda plans to position the Prelude as an entry-level electric sports car, with the NSX coming back for a third generation as Honda’s electric halo car to take on the best of what the rest of the world has to offer.

The Prelude will likely be FWD (in keeping with Honda’s traditions) while the NSX will be AWD and more of a bona fide electric supercar. 

Nothing is set in stone yet, but watch this space.

I suspect we will start seeing a lot more of car manufacturers bringing back popular older vehicles in order to attract attention to new hybrid/electric models. Ad agency execs working on behalf of car makers will be furiously trying to think of how many ways you can say “spiritual successor” without it becoming boring.

To this day, the Prelude remains one of those Japanese sports cars that still represents good buying. The world has gone mad when it comes to pricing for cars like the MK4 Toyota Supra or Nissan 300ZX. 

However, the Prelude has always flown somewhat under the radar, despite the fact that Honda did such a good job of blending good looks (Jeremy Clarkson once claimed the fifth generation Prelude was the best looking Japanese car ever) with robust performance, particularly in higher-spec models like the fifth generation Prelude Type S or VTi-R, with their powerful VTEC engines and high-tech torque vectoring systems.

I, for one, am excited to see what a new Prelude might look like! What do you think about a new Prelude? Feel free to leave a comment below, it would be great to hear from you. 

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