The 80s era of desirable and collectible JDM cars, specifically those from Honda, doesn’t tend to draw many to mind. Most of Honda’s peak and desirable models were focused closer to the 90s and early 2000s, but a few Hondas from this time period have crept up in desirability over the years – the EF-generation Civic Hatch, and the focus of here, the BA-generation Honda Prelude Coupe.

The third generation – aka the ‘BA-’ series, was produced between 1987 to 1991. Featuring styling cues from the company’s flagship model, the NSX NA1, the Prelude also featured one of the most aerodynamic body designs of the time. During its production run, the BA-generation Prelude represented a culmination of Honda’s engineering prowess and dedication to creating a sports coupe that excels in both performance and style – which remains head-turning to this day.

The BA generation Prelude was powered exclusively by variants of the Honda B20A engine, which included a base carbureted version with an SOHC 12-valve valvetrain, or a DOHC variant with Honda’s PGM-FI fuel injection and 16 valves.  Power was sent to the front wheels, through either a 4-speed automatic or a 5-speed manual transmission.

Several trim levels were made available across the Prelude range, with the top of the range, and the most desirable model being the Si TCV. Limited to approximately just 3,000 units, this special limited production model exclusive for Japan was desirable for many reasons, including standard four-wheel steering (4WS), anti-lock brakes, a limited-slip differential, Traction Control System (TCS), as well as a leather-wrapped steering wheel & shift knob, additional sound-proof insulation, and other features normally available as optional equipment on Preludes.

The BA3 Prelude’s 4WS system was the first of its kind in a production car, solidifying Honda’s reputation as an industry pioneer. This innovative technology enhanced the car’s handling and maneuverability, delivering precise control and exceptional cornering capabilities.

The Honda Prelude might not have the famous ‘VTEC Zone’ of its Civic or Integra Type R siblings, nor the open-top motoring experience of a similar two-door coupe Honda offering, the S2000, but for those who have a lust for anything ‘rad’ or nostalgic for the 1980s, the Prelude is the perfect choice for any enthusiast. With its era-specific design, unique four-wheel steering, and not to mention, the iconic pop-up headlights, the Prelude is ideal for anyone nostalgic for the good old days.

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