The Honda Prelude was originally launched in 1978, although sales were first confined to the US and Japan, so the Mk.1 and 2 versions are extremely rare in Britain and Europe. It was a powerful 2-door sports saloon, with an 1800cc engine and renowned for it's great reliability. The first models had a somewhat clunky, Civic-like appearance, which in the Mk. 2 was refined down to a far more sporty, chisel-nosed look.
It was only when the Mk.3 version appeared in 1988 that the Prelude began to be imported to England, but then only in small numbers. Similar in basic design to it's predecessors, it featured a larger 2-litre engine, pop-up headlamps and (in the '90 & '91 models' four-wheel steering as well. This was a world first and was meant to make parking and maneuverability much easier- though whether it did or not I am unsure as my own car is an '89 so missed out on this innovation. The Mk.3 was a beautiful-looking car, with elegant lines and very resistant to rust- acceleration was impressive, but the rear seating was very cramped and they drank petrol like water.
The Mk.4 appeared in the 1990s, very different in design and much less distinctive, looking pretty much like any other sports coupe to have emerged from Japan over the last 15 years. It's performance was superior though, with 16v engines virtually standard and a higher top speed and torque ratio. The last in the line, the Mk.5, marked a return in appearance to it's late '70s predecessors, with open headlights and a more boxy rear end. They included the now highly prized Type S and Motegi versions, which were only ever available in Japan unless specially imported.
The Prelude was finally discontinued in 2001 to be replaced by the Integra, and are rapidly becoming a great rarity (especially the first 3 versions). They make superb modern classics if you fancy driving something a bit different, but be warned - they have a great fondness for gasoline!!