We don’t know if Pocahontas ever dreamed of building a slammed Honda Prelude, but if she did, she’d probably end up with something like this.
The search for a completely unique theme for your Hot 4 isn’t always an easy one. Every idea, concept and angle seems to have been covered before someone in quest for public recognition, admiring glances, or maybe even an engraved piece of perspex from a show judge.
At 43 years of age, Dave Carvill isn’t exactly an A-typical builder of such an outrageous Honda. Then again, who are we to judge who should or shouldn’t enjoy crazy cars like Dave’s?
Honda’s design language of the early 90’s was all about smooth flowing shapes, and in coupe language the Prelude of the era was, next to the Legend, one of the largest and most svelte on offer. Curiously, Dave has made his 1992 Prelude appear much more like a stretched Del Sol- shape CRX thanks to the filling of the quarter windows. The common design language is unmistakable.
Cruelly tagged as a bit of a ‘chick’s car’, the Prelude started life as an Si with the bogo BB-series engine with just enough grunt to power the air-con and make it down to the shops and back before boredom set in. That’s why Dave made the smart move of swapping the rudimentary mill for the lustier H22A 2.2L VTEC unit from the higher-spec VTi-R weapon.
Grunting out 130kW and spinning happily to 7500rpm, in standard guise the new engine breathed life into the coupe, and since it was standard fitment in the VTi-R, the swap was oh so easy. To eke out a few more kilowatts, Dave had the head ported and polished before fitting custom forged high-compression pistons along with Mugen camshafts, cam gears and valve springs.
A cold-air induction, 2.25in stainless steel exhaust system and GReddy e-Manage ECU further ehance the driving experience.
Yep, while ‘adding lightness’ is the path trodden by JDM fan boys for their VTEC-powered Hondas, Dave’s low-slung cruiser-spec build headed down the opposite path. This route certainly makes for a more comfortable drive, more turned heads, and probably fewer speeding fines.
Jetspeed Melbourne was tasked with transforming the exterior bodywork, with replacement fiberglass front bar, rear bar, and side skirts. It’s an aggressive kit, full of swoops and curves combined with vents fore and aft, plus a neat set of quad driving lights recessed neatly into the front bar.
Other neat touches that make Dave’s Prelude unique are the fluted guards, smothered rear number plate surround, and those aforementioned quarter glass panels that were filled with fiberglass inserts.
Of course, the airbrushed graphics need little explanation. It’s an American Indian theme that, frankly, we can’t ever recall seeing anyone else apply. Certainly not to a Honda Prelude that’s for sure.
Installer Stylin’ Car Audio got to rock out a bit with the boot installation. The team filled the spare wheel well with one massive enclosure to house four VDO Dayton HBS-series 12in subwoofers.
Still Dave’s isn’t the first paint a completely naked woman onto his car. That honour goes to Riad Sage and his ‘SQEZME’ Hyundai S-coupe circa 1999. You have to wonder what Dave tells the cops when he invariably gets pulled over, or maybe they just want to admire the handiwork of UCY Power Image in Melbourne. Do you think it occurs to them that the girl adoring the bonnet looks more like a well-known soft-core porn star than a bona fide Indian? We doubt it…
Our favourite aspect of Dave’s Prelude, and the area that really works well with the Indian theme, is the interior. Here, Dave’s motor trimmers Mulgrave Trimming really got to flex some creative muscle, and replaced the 1992-spec sea of black and grey vinyl with acres of tasteful leather and tweed -style coverings.
The seat inserts feature neat diagonal stitched patterns that contrast nicely with the soft black leather. Then there’s the small flashed of cream-coloured suede for armrests, roof lining and the gear shift surround, which all tie in with the skin tones of the exterior airbrushing. When added to the Indian-themed embroidered inserts used on the seats, the overall look is very cohesive. Then there’s the audio system.
Dave’s mostly stuck with Alpine throughout the system, with a CDA7892 CD tuner for the source and an MRVF345 four-channel amplifier for the main speakers, supported by an IFD1000 mono amplifier for the subwoofers. Apline’s SPR176A splits slot into the stock front door locations, and the blocked-out rear quarter glass is the ideal spot for matching SPR76LR coaxial as rear fill.
Installer Stylin’ Car Audio got to rock out a bit with the boot installation. The team filled the spare wheel well with one massive enclosure to house four VDO Dayton HBS-series 12in subwoofers. To allow all four fit, the two front subwoofers have been flipped upside down and are wired out of phase to match the rear pair. Too easy.
With killer tunes to match the equally enthralling interior, a knockout exterior and a humming Honda VTEC to power him along, Dave’s final vision of his ultimate Prelude is all but complete.
Now all he needs, it seems, is a suitable budding Pocahontas to ride side-saddle with him. Where on Earth he’s going to find one around the ‘burbs of Melbourne is a whole different problem.