I’d like to think by now most of y’all have noticed that I live in a house with another gearhead; my roommate Garrett. Garrett, being the super generous social butterfly that he is, has a lot of other car people in his orbit. Sometimes, the house seems to have a gravitational pull on random cars. One such random car is my friend Andreas’s 1990 Acura Legend. Andreas is worse than me; he’s functionally unable to resist a “good deal.” So when he saw this Legend on Craigslist back in 2015, he had to have it. What was he going to do with it? Who knows, that doesn’t matter, someone had to save this car from being destroyed.
The Legend was Honda’s first attempt at a luxury car for the American market. Sort of a big Accord, this car was the result of Honda and Rover’s group effort to create a bigger luxury car to appease both U.S. and European markets.
I think the design has aged very well, with clean lines and good proportions; albeit maybe not as premium looking as offerings from Mercedes-Benz or BMW of that era. I’ll admit it, the proportions are a bit milquetoast, especially compared to the absolute showstopper that was the later ’91 Legend.
This particular example has done 197,000 miles, and is still going. Obviously, it’s not a showpiece. The whole passenger side is crinklely, it’s got typical Honda rust, the CV axles make noise, the sunroof shattered when people stood on the roof during May 2020’s protests, the transmission could shift smoother, and it uses a bit of oil, either via burning or leaking. Still though, it runs, it never fails to start, and I found myself kind of admiring it.
Andreas now lives in Texas, and it’s too much of a chore to convoy all of his cars via the fourteen-hour convoy from Columbus, to Dallas.
Funnily enough, the car is such a solid runner that Andreas lent it to a friend, who drove it from Ohio to Texas, then attempted to ghost him and keep it. Andreas reported it stolen, and eventually months later Texas authorities impounded the car. From there, Andreas flew to texas to retrieve it and gave it to his godfather, who then drove it for a little while.
The Legend, as many 30-year-old cars do, developed a parasitic electrical drain, so it would frequently conk out on his godfather. Eventually that problem was fixed, and the car somehow made its way back to Ohio… to my goddamn house again. Not before snapping a rear-wheel lower control arm, though.
Now, the Legend has become a sort of spare car for our friends who don’t always have a reliable vehicle of their own to drive. Is your car at the mechanic? Take the Legend. Hell, sometimes I find myself driving the Legend if when I’m bored of the Sonic or Abarth.
It’s always an experience when I drive an older car like this. This car was the nicest, and largest thing Honda made back in 1990, and it somehow feels lower and smaller than a current shape Civic. Visibility is good, but this car only reminds you how tall new cars are. My Chevy Sonic feels like a light truck, by comparison.
I don’t know how long this Acura Legend will last here at my house, but I’m glad it’s here.