Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

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10.0

really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
55,949 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

1998 Honda Prelude transmission problems

transmission problem

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1998 Honda Prelude Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #23

Jan 072011

Prelude 4-cyl

  • 120,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

On my third transmission for this car, I have become scared to drive it. When making left turns my transmission will randomly choose when to engage in the correct gear. There have been many close accidents in this car and I am no longer able to make left turns. This happens on the freeway at times and I am unable to pull over at a safe speed because this models transmission is faulty. This is an issue with this model for quite some time and I feel cheated and un-safe in this vehicle.

- Doraville, GA, USA

problem #22

Jun 172008

Prelude

  • 150,000 miles
The transmission seemed to stop working in D(drive) mode. I had to use the manual/ autostick to get the car to drive. There was no improvement in the shifting. I had to pay to have a 5 speed swap done at a performance shop. This is my 3rd Honda that has had transmission failure.

- Huntsville, OH, USA

problem #21

Jun 152008

Prelude

  • 65,000 miles
The automatic sport shift transmission is starting to fail. The transmission is shifting hard (jolts) throughout all the gears. I was told by a mechanic that I need a new transmission. My car only has 65,000 miles on it and this is a premature malfunction of the transmission. This car is meticulously cared for, regularly maintained, oil changed regularly; transmission oil changed every third oil change to avoid transmission problems. The car is never raced or redlined. I also don't feel comfortable replacing a transmission that will fail once again as with many Prelude owners. The Honda Prelude costs about $25,000 and thus a $4,000 transmission job is 20% of the car. Just plain unreasonable!!! this has become a financially burdensome situation. Furthermore, Honda has recalled all 1997 Prelude in turkey and has replaced the transmissions with updated mh6A units. This is not an isolated case!!! please, your help in this matter is greatly needed. Thanks

- Irvine, CA, USA

problem #20

Apr 042008

Prelude 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 115,320 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

The contact owns a 1998 Honda Prelude. The contact parked the vehicle in her driveway, removed the key from the ignition, and exited the vehicle. When she returned to enter the vehicle, it began to roll out of the driveway. The contact was dragged by the vehicle, but she was able to let go and roll on the pavement. The vehicle struck the mailbox and came to a stop when it struck a pole. The vehicle was taken to the dealer on January 30, 2006 for NHTSA campaign id number 05V025000 (electrical system:ignition:switch). The manufacturer wants the contact's insurance company to investigate the failure and notify their legal department with the results. The contact sustain injuries to her left and right side. A police report was filed. The powertrain and speed were unknown. The current and failure mileages were 115,320.

- Arlington, TX, USA

problem #19

Feb 152008

Prelude 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 134,000 miles
1998 Honda Prelude w/ sequential shift automatic. The vehicle has 135,000 miles on it when purchased. After some online research, I found many people reporting transmission failures in this vehicle with this transmission. I even found that Honda has recalled the Prelude's in turkey for this same issue, but has not in the us. The repairs cost approximately $2,800. Why was this recall facilitated on the same vehicle in another country, but not in the us?

- North Haven, CT, USA

problem #18

Dec 162006

Prelude 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 118,000 miles
My transmission started slipping on me then it started shifting down to second then back to fourth then back to second. I pulled over and now it seems to be stuck in second gear. When the vehicle cooled down then it was fine for a short while then it started shifting sporadically. It slips in reverse also.

- Florissant, MO, USA

problem #17

Aug 122005

Prelude 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 86,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

The automatic sport shift transmission failed in August of 05, and it was replaced with the same transmission, which is starting to fail again, I do not have the financial support to replace this transmission again if it fails. This car has been very well taken care of and never red-lined, always oil changed at 3000 miles, etc. I feel this transmission is a safety hazard and that Honda should replace this transmission with one that is safe and reliable, not the current one, which I feel is a danger to all Prelude owners.

- Pleasant Grove, UT, USA

problem #16

Aug 102005

Prelude 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
It has been known that Honda Prelude 1997-1999 transmissions are faulty. Mine failed yesterday during a normal trip on a free way. Gears slipped and a strong smell was noticeable inside the car. To avoid any emergency situation I had to park my car on the shoulder immediately and wait for a tow truck.

- Cherry Hill, NJ, USA

problem #15

Jan 012005

Prelude 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 35,250 miles
Car is 1998, with only 35,255 miles. According to mechanic, transmission is bad. Need to replace transmission. Called Honda of America to see if goodwill will be made due to low mileage with transmission problem. Read in forums, seems like Prelude have had a history of transmission problems with the models of 1997 - 2002 years.

- San Jose, CA, USA

problem #14

Apr 122004

Prelude 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 96,580 miles
I have a 1998 Honda Prelude with a automatic with the sport shift transmission. The one that comes with the base model Prelude. I was driving my car and I felt the transmission not pulling no more then the engine rev high and then I let my foot of the gas and the transmission slapped back into gear. I had the transmission rebuilt and it is starting to do it again. I took the car to Honda and they said there was nothing for them to do but put a new transmission in the car and it would be very costly and I have talk to people with the car and they have the same problems. So I would think there would be a recall because it is a very hazardous to the driver.

- London, OH, USA

problem #13

Feb 052004

(reported on)

Prelude

  • Automatic transmission
  • 47,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

The key can be taken out of the ignition while the vehicle is not in park. The driver took the key out of the ignition while to vehicle was in drive and the vehicle continued to move forward.

- Radnor, PA, USA

problem #12

Nov 302003

Prelude 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 64,000 miles
1998 Honda Prelude transmission problem. I just recently bought a 98 Honda Prelude. This is beautiful. I know the previous owner, and she was a good driver that never even utilized the vtec, meaning the RPM never went above 5000. Now I have it, and it has 63000 miles on it. This is my second car so I treat it with much care. But now suddenly, the gears don't shift right. Its an automatic and when the gears are shifting over it feels like a manual transmission with a worn out clutch, the engine revs up a bit and misses the next gear and sets in a late. If the car is floored, when the RPM hits 7000 the gear doesn't change! you have to let go of the accelerator and let it slide in to the next. This is terrible absolutely terrible. As far as I know there has been a recall on the 99-00 Prelude and I'm trying to get something done about my 98.

- Oakbrook, IL, USA

problem #11

Aug 032003

Prelude 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,170 miles
While driving, my car will over rev, and jerk into gear. If I let off of the gas it will slip into gear less harshly. I brought my car to Honda of covington in covington, la, and they informed me that the transmission was failing due to the installation of aftermarket parts, such as a cold-air intake, header, and exhaust muffler. My local mechanic sais this is ludicrous, and that a simple additon of 10-15 hp would not cause a transmission failure. I have not modified or altered in any way the internal components of the car. Each modification was a simple bolt-on and at the time of purcahse was in accordance with Honda. I called Honda techinical service many times and asked if I put a certain aftermarket part on my car would it void my warranty. Each time Honda told me that asd long as the internal components of my car remained intact, I would not be in trouble. They alos informed me of buying an axle-back exhaust instead of a full cat-back, to better insure the safety of my warranty. Now I am informed that my tranny would ned to be replced or overhualed at a cost of more than $5000, and now Honda has gone back on their word, and decided to null my warranty based on the addition of aftermarket components. I have since contacted a lawyer and plan to sue Honda.

- Hammond, LA, USA

problem #10

Feb 182003

Prelude

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
The vehicle experienced transmission failure.

- Naperville, IL, USA

problem #9

Jan 182003

Prelude 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 81,693 miles
While driving my car in regular drive it suddenly didn't pull no more and the engine just revved. I let my foot off the gas and then it went back into gear. The car continued to do this and then it started to upshift then suddenly downshift to the lower gear causing a very sudden jerk and change in speed. I took my car to Honda of cleveland in cleveland, tn. I told them what happened and they suggested to have a diagnostic test run. I agreed and the results were codes P700 and P730 internal failure and incorrect gear needs transmission overhaul or replacement. I was shocked when the service advisor told me this. I explained to him that I could not understand how this could have happened. I asked him if it could be a defective part. He answered no. I asked if it could be computer related and he said no that it was a failure inside the transmission. I asked him what failed. He couldn't tell me. He just told me what the diagnostic test came up with. The service quote for a remanufactured transmission installed was for $5365.26 when I heard this quote I said "is this made out of gold". I told him the reason I bought a Honda was to avoid problems like this. I also had asked the service person if he had heard of other people with this type of car having this problem and he said he hadn't. after seeing this site and others I realized that there is a problem. I hope this complaint helps.

- Cleveland, TN, USA

problem #8

May 122001

Prelude 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 39,817 miles
While driving the vehicle at 65mph transmission slipped into lower gear loss speed, causing to pull out of the road. Dealer put a new transmission, five months later consumer had the same problem.

- Concord, CA, USA

problem #7

Nov 012001

Prelude

  • miles
In November of last year, I began experiencing transmission problems with my 1998 Honda Prelude. The vehicle was making noises which seemed be coming from within the transmission. At the time the vehicle had only 49,000 miles on it.

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #6

Oct 232002

(reported on)

Prelude 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 49,000 miles
Consumer stated the vehicle began experiencing problems with the transmission, the problem was caused by a bearing inside of the transmission, after the work was completed, consumer began experiencing more problems with the transmission not shifting smoothly, after being referrred to another mechanic it was determined that additional problems deeper into the transmission had not been originally found by the first mechanic and the entire transmission had to be replaced, consumer is requesting reimbursement from the manufacturer, because he learned of an extended warranty on transmission that the manufacturer was offering, however it only applies to 2000-2001 models.

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #5

Sep 232002

(reported on)

Prelude

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
While being driven automatic transmission will drop to a lower gear. Owner has to manually shift lever in order to get transmission back in higher gear.ak

- Pittsburgh, PA, USA

problem #4

Sep 182001

Prelude

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Four-speed automatic transmission abruptly downshifted on its own causing the car to rapidly brake then accelerate with no driver control. At the time, I was told by Honda that they have never heard of this happening, the car was out of warranty, there were no replacement transmissions available for sale, and I would have to go to an independent transmission shop to have it rebuilt. The transmission shop showed me the friction surface on the clutches disintegrated, clogging the pump and filter which caused the eratic self-shifting. I was told this was faulty material used in the transmission. I now see in the los angeles times that there have been a number of problems with Honda and Acura automatic transmissions that the company has been trying to keep quiet.

- Anaheim, CA, USA

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