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  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Generation
    Non Honda
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Location
    Victoria
    Posts
    1

    First Car at 22 - Prelude??

    Hey guys!

    Jess here - first time poster, long time lurker.. and I need your help/advice!

    I'm 22 and looking at buying my first car in the next month or so. Currently I share a 2009 Holden Cruze with my 20 year old brother.

    You've probably already guessed that I'm considering a Prelude (4th/5th Gen) as my new [much more exciting] ride.



    So here's the situation:

    I have about 7.5K saved at the moment, aiming to spend ~5-6k on inspecting/acquiring the car and keep the rest as contingency for future repairs/rego etc.


    I have a few questions:

    1. I've heard Hondas are expensive to repair because of part prices etc. I'm interested in your experiences coz obviously they're getting older, I may be looking at some serious repairs.
    How much am I looking at for the normal service?
    Major service? (I'm scared about gearboxes/clutches)

    2. Both of these cars obviously have a lot of mods. Is that something I should avoid/be wary of when buying?

    3. Anyone know of any good places in Melbourne for Honda parts if(/when) I needed to source them? I've done some googling, but nowhere was giving me ballpark figures for prices off the bat (understandable, but annoying for research)

    4. I'm only looking at manuals because I've heard such awful things about the autos. Justified?


    Any thoughts you guys have will be super helpful.
    Thanks so much for reading. Have a panda.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails a-panda-hello-408697-475-475.jpg  

  2. #2
    Senior Member Sean628's Avatar
    Generation
    3rd Gen
    Model
    Si 4ws
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Victoria
    Posts
    945
    Ask here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/12488975315/
    you'll get answer much faster

  3. #3
    Senior Member Sean628's Avatar
    Generation
    3rd Gen
    Model
    Si 4ws
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Victoria
    Posts
    945
    you budget is in a range of a good 5th gen, so
    1. buy the one with the major service done recently
    2. avoid auto, avoid manuals needs a clutch change, gearbox probs, avoid engines down on power or dripping oil, avoid blue smoke when driving, avoid car making any strange noise when running etc.
    3. Imlachs wrecker in springvale often has parts for 5th gens, or Hondworld, Parts Heaven
    4. yes

  4. #4
    Senior Member Sean628's Avatar
    Generation
    3rd Gen
    Model
    Si 4ws
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Victoria
    Posts
    945
    Here's a member's car http://www.carsales.com.au/private/d...SSE-AD-2968587 has been taken care of, good for p plater first car

  5. #5
    Regular Member tassie_bb1's Avatar
    Generation
    4th Gen
    Model
    VTEC
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Tasmania
    Posts
    205
    Quote Originally Posted by Sean628 View Post
    Here's a member's car http://www.carsales.com.au/private/d...SSE-AD-2968587 has been taken care of, good for p plater first car
    Damn, why's that thing riding so high? Can you get a lift kit for the 5G?? Oh wait... that's how high they sit stock.

    Welcome to the forum Jess.

    Sean pretty much hit the nail on the head. There are a bunch of red lights to look for when purchasing any used car. However, a little puff of smoke when taking off or at higher RPM can sometimes point to valve stem seals or the PCV valve, both of which are relatively easy to fix but can save you some bucks if the seller doesn't realise. A compression test will quickly tell you if any smoke is going to be costly to fix. If you are really concerned then consider taking the car to the RACV or a mechanic for a once over before purchasing. But yes, no smoke or leaks will always be better. I'd steer well clear of any 5th gen auto, they were not a good transmission and plenty of people have had dramas with them. Unfortunately even the newest preludes are getting on in years, more and more will eventually need replacing over time. As Sean said it's better if a major service has been done recently. One thing not many mechanics seem to do is change the automatic timing belt tensioner when the timing belt is changed. This is a major failure point on the VTEC motors (and death for the motor if it does) so proof this has been changed is a bit of peace of mind too. Mileage is important and finding one with low(ish) k's would be a bonus but it's getting hard to find any with under 150,000km. Another thing to look out for, 4th gens commonly suffer from rust in the sunroof, look for any bubbling of the paint in the corners. And even though Milano Red is the best colour ever (the lighter of the two reds they came in), it fades like you wouldn't believe. If you are looking at a red one then be wary if you can't keep it garaged.

    For that sort of money you should definitely be able to pick up a VTI-R, if someone is trying to sell you an Si for that much money it'd want to be immaculate.

    Yes Honda's can be expensive to repair when compared to domestic cars, but I think they are comparable to any other Japanese vehicle. European cars I've found are much more expensive than Honda's to service. Find a mechanic who does good work and is trustworthy and you will be set.

    The used parts market in Australia is stuffed. Going for Honda genuine costs a fortune here but I've had success recently purchasing parts directly from Japan significantly cheaper and quicker than getting them locally. Aftermarket is a problem too, the suppliers that sell to Supercheap, Autobarn, Repco etc. aren't exactly the highest of quality and eBay is too hit-and-miss if you don't know what you're really after. A few people on here have recommended Rockauto.com in the US for aftermarket parts.

    Mods aren't always bad. The original stereo systems were atrocious so if it's got a head unit and speakers then it saves you doing it yourself, aftermarket alarms are pretty common too. Just be sure it's been done properly. You can usually tell by pulling out the head unit or feeling around the back of the console and peering around under the dash, if all the wires look nice and neat, are soldered and wrapped nicely etc. then that's a good sign. Lots of electrical tape or crimps is usually the sign of a backyard job. Things like body kits, exhausts, clear tail lights, neon lights, subwoofers, coilovers etc. etc. could mean the car has been handed around a bit and probably flogged.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Luderboy's Avatar
    Generation
    5th Gen
    Model
    VTIR
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    New South Wales
    Posts
    623
    I have an unrego'd 5th gen for sale for only $1000, its got a jdm swap and a tranny swap, completely running nd only in need of a new fender for rego.

    U wont get a cheaper better prelude but u will have to put some work into it, needs some tlc, but im hapoy to get it rego'd for ya if u wanna pay more :-)

    Check the prelude for sale section of the forum.
    Last edited by Luderboy; 30th November 2014 at 07:22 PM.
    H22a4
    ITR Revolution Intake
    68MM TB (Port Matched)
    VAFC II (Tuned by Toda Aus)
    98KW = Disapointing

    Upgraded Valvetrain
    Full 2.5' exaust

    115KW = Still disapointing

    5spd swap FINALLY!!!! finished yay...........

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