5 Reasons You Shouldn’t Buy a 90s Honda or Acura

If you’re currently in the market for a used car, then you have probably noticed that prices for them have spiked. However, if you’re really in a pinch and only have a few thousand dollars to spend, then buying an older Honda or Acura from a private party has probably crossed your mind. And why not?

In the 90s, Hondas and Acuras were built well and they have proven their reliability over time. They’re also easy to modify – if you’re into that kind of thing – and best of all, you can still pick one up for cheap, even in these crazy times. However, here are five reasons why buying an older Honda or Acura might not be the best idea.

1. Many Honda and Acura cars from that era are prone to being stolen

Acura Integra Tops Most Stolen List
An older model Acura Integra is seen in a parking lot. Acura’s Integra topped the most stolen car list of 2004. | (Photo by Tim Boyle/Getty Images)

It’s fairly common knowledge that older Hondas and Acuras are prone to getting stolen, and unfortunately, that’s still the case in 2021. In fact, Value Penguin reported that the Honda Civic is still the most stolen car in the U.S., followed by the Honda Accord.

Thieves target these older Hondas because they’re so easy to steal and the parts can be sold very easily without a trace. If you really want to buy a Honda or Acura from the 90s, then we suggest equipping it with a two-way aftermarket alarm and perhaps a kill switch.

2. Some older Hondas don’t age well

1997 Honda Civic
1997 Honda Civic | Wikimedia Commons

Considering it’s 2021, you have to remember that some of the 90s Hondas and Acura that you’re most likely looking at are nearly 30 years old. And while it’s safe to say that they were built slightly better than the cars in the 70s, a 25-year-old car is still… old.

That being said, some of the cars that you might find on Craigslist or other classifieds can have rust, dents, or other structural issues that could negate their cheap prices. However, if you find a 90s Honda or Acura that you really want, we suggest getting it checked out by a mechanic before you commit to purchasing it.

3. Older Hondas and Acuras aren’t as safe as newer ones

Three cars collided requiring three people of four people involved to be transported to St. John Regional Medical Center by Gold Coast ambulances.
Three cars collided requiring three people of four people involved to be transported to St. John Regional Medical Center by Gold Coast ambulances. | (Photo by Steve Osman/LA Times via Getty Images)

When it comes to driving, safety is the most important factor. There’s a reason why new cars come with driver-assist features and a multitude of airbags. Honda from the 90s, however, do not. In the late 90s, Hondas and Acuras did come with dual airbags, in addition to some structural reinforcement, but that was the extent of their safety features back then.

That’s something to keep in mind if you’re planning to buy an older Honda as many of those Civics and Integras were like tin cans on four wheels. Although, those lightweight body structures did make them more fun to drive.

4. The perception of owning an older Honda is not too favorable

Two 1995 Honda Civics parked next to each other
Two 1995 Honda Civics parked next to each other | Wikimedia Commons

Believe it or not, the saying “I drive a 1999 Honda Civic” doesn’t have the same effect in 2021 that it did back in 2000. Thanks to movies like The Fast and the Furious, the allure of driving what is widely known as a “tuner car” isn’t too favorable nowadays, especially if you’re older than 16.

Of course, you really shouldn’t care what other people think about your car. But if you’re the type that does, then you might want to buy a newer Honda to maintain your street cred when someone asks you, “What kind of car do you drive?”

5. A 90s Honda can quickly turn into a money pit

This reason is mostly aimed toward the Honda enthusiasts that like to modify their cars. A typical Honda tuner will purchase a car, like a Civic or Integra, for around $3,000 and then start modifying it. All is well since parts are very cheap for these cars and you can find replacement parts at junkyards pretty easily.

However, those cheap parts can quickly add up. One day, you’ll be spending a couple of hundred dollars on an aftermarket intake and before you know it, you’ll be dropping a couple of grand on a turbo kit. The modification bug bites hard when it comes to these older Hondas and Acuras, so if you must buy one, then consider exercising some restraint.

An older Honda or Acura might be tempting, but it can lead to headaches

Buying a 90s Honda or Acura can be a great solution if you just need to be mobile and don’t have a lot of money to spend. But just remember that buying one can lead to headaches if it gets stolen or becomes a money pit. They’re great cars, just proceed with caution.

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