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.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety. Notes: The 2002 Honda Accord suffers from widespread transmission failure, subframe rust, & problems with the airbag system (SRS). We recommend avoiding this model year like the plague.

The transmission begins slipping & eventually has to be replaced, typically soon after 90,000 miles & with a repair cost of over $2,000. Transmission failure has been a huge problem for the Accord & several other Honda models all through the early 2000s model years. Honda extended the transmission warranty to 93 months/109k miles for the 2000-2001 Accord as a class action lawsuit settlement, but owners of other Accord model years with transmission problems are out of luck.

Subframe rust near the front passenger side wheel has become a problem recently, due to the poorly positioned A/C drain hose directly above that area. Repair cost to the subframe is over $2,000.

The SRS warning light likes to come on due to a defective seat belt sensor -- typically the driver's side. This sensor is covered under Honda's lifetime seat belt warranty, but some dealers charge a $100+ "diagnostic fee" or tell customers the entire SRS unit ($800) is bad.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
12 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
53,493 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.

2002 Honda Accord engine problems

engine problem

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2002 Honda Accord Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #30

Nov 132015


  • 100,000 miles


The contact owns a 2002 Honda Accord. While driving 30 mph, the gauge and RPM unit on the instrument panel became inoperable without warning. The contact stated that the vehicle began to accelerate while attempting to come to a complete stop. The contact also stated that it was extremely hard to slow the vehicle down. The failure occured once. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was approximately 100,000.

- Madison, AL, USA

problem #29

May 292012

Accord 4-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
Vehicle lurked into on coming traffic causing vehicles to slam on brakes and a near miss on interstate 10. 3 or four vehicles had to go to the median, entering on-ramp headed West on I10. Not the first occasion this situation has happened.

- Tallahassee, FL, USA

problem #28

Mar 012013


  • 86,000 miles
I have a 2002 Honda Accord ex and the car jerks into gear, even going from 1st to 2nd gear. I am always worried taking off from a stop light because the car doesn't get into gear right away or take off smoothly.

- Norwood Park, IL, USA

problem #27

Jul 152011

Accord 4-cyl

  • 65,000 miles


Coming to a yield, was clear, accelerated vehicle in D4, vehicle did not move, rpms 2000, 30 sec later gear engage, spinning front tires, road was not clear at this time, had to apply emergency brake along with pedal brake to keep from hitting another vehicle. This was not a safe situation. This vehicle lurches forward when stopping, shifting hard. Not safe to drive.

- Tallahassee, FL, USA

problem #26

Jul 292013


  • 148,761 miles
I was driving in traffic and my car's D4 light began blinking and when I would slow down to a complete stop the car would jerk before coming to a stop. I had to restart the car to get it to stop jerking. This has happened maybe 4 times before and I took it to someone and they said that the transmission could be going and I would need a new one. There are thousands of complaints about the transmissions on these older Honda Accord, and I think it is about time they do something to fix this issue.

- San Leandro, CA, USA

problem #25

Jun 152012

Accord 4-cyl

  • 87,000 miles
Lost power and unable to safely control car. Pulled into intersection and lost power in front of on-coming traffic. Defective transmission, cars is unable to shift, may lose power or accelerate suddenly. Well documented problem in Honda transmission, unsafe to drive as power is unreliable and transmission can fail at any moment. Honda already previously named in class action lawsuit, problems remain. Honda refuses to acknowledge or repair. Ntsb needs to order a recall for the safety of drivers and passengers.

- Williamsburg, VA, USA

problem #24

Jun 012009


  • 70,000 miles


The contact owns a 2002 Honda Accord. The contact stated that the vehicle surged forward while attempting to stop. The failure occurred intermittently. The vehicle was taken to an independent repair shop on numerous occasions and the throttle plate was cleaned. The failure continued. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 70,000.

- Hollywood, FL, USA

problem #23

Apr 232010


  • 20 miles
2002 Honda Accord ex V6. The transmission was determined by holler Honda to be terminal, meaning no good needing to be replaced. The danger occurs when you have to accelerate with the normal traffic flow and are unable to because of slipping and improper shifting. A accident waiting to happen. I'm sure there have already been accidents due to this by people who unaware of the severity of the problem. From what I've read this is a very common problem, Honda has agreed to split the cost of the repair of $4,600, with my mom having alzheimer's and me no job that figure might as well be 4 million dollars. Please somebody help us with this problem.

- Casselberry, FL, USA

problem #22

Mar 102012

Accord 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Cpsc#I1230350A. 2002 Honda Accord. Consumer stated she attempted to come to a stop at the red light but her car was still accelerating. The consumer immediately put the vehicle in neutral, then park and shut the engine off. When she attempted to re-start the vehicle, the vehicle began revving extremely high. A passerby, who was a mechanic opened the hood, and discovered the accelerator cable was stuck and released it. Also, the transmission was replaced three times.

- Sicklerville, NJ, USA

problem #21

Sep 012011


  • 148,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Honda Accord. The contact attempted to accelerate from a traffic stop but the accelerator pedal became hard and would not immediately respond. The failure recurred intermittently. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for diagnosis or repairs. The approximate failure mileage was 148,000.

- Rison, AR, USA

problem #20

Jan 022012

Accord 4-cyl

  • 222,000 miles


I was making a right turn to merge into the middle lane on a highway service road where every car was waiting for the green light. I turned very slowly at low speed after stopping at the stop sign, and all of a sudden the steering wheel started to turn by itself, then my car turned 180 degrees, while the accelerator speeded up at a rapid pace, seeming to be stuck. My car jumped the curb, hit a sign, and finally stopped. The bumper cover came down, and I can see the bumper was damaged (pushed back in the middle about 2 inches), but both of my 2002 Honda Accord's air bags did not deploy at all.

- Plano, TX, USA

problem #19

Feb 012010

Accord 4-cyl

  • 90,000 miles
Purchased the 2002 Honda Accord SE coupe in March 2008 with 64K miles. After a few months of driving I began to feel a slight jerk when I placed my feet on the accelerator. Took my car to a local Honda dealership only to be told that I needed a transmission flush. After driving car I began to feel the slight jerk and over a year I recieved 2 transmission flushes. Jerking has gotten so bad that I am not able to trade because it is basically a lemon. Honda dealership has told me now that I need a new transmission. Over 3K to replace and after calling american Honda they refused to help with the cost. This is a known problem with the 2002 Accord but yet they wont own up to it. I will never purchase a Honda ever again.

- Jacksonville, FL, USA

problem #18

Oct 252010


  • 50,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Honda Accord. The contact stated that while accelerating from a complete stop, the vehicle suddenly increased acceleration without warning. The brakes were engaged repeatedly and the vehicle continued to travel and crashed into several curbs. There was susbstantial damage to the passenger side fender. In addition, both front tires and the rear passenger and driver side tires exploded. The vehicle was towed to an authorized dealer who was unable to determine the cause of failure. The four tires were replaced and necessary repairs were performed on the fender and passenger side door area. The manufacturer was made aware of the problem. The failure mileage was 50,000.

- Easley, SC, USA

problem #17

Feb 232010


  • 1 miles
The accelerator pedal sticks when started in the morning and momentarily accelerates quickly when depressed and then decelerates.

- Columbia, SC, USA

problem #16

Feb 052010


  • 142,000 miles
My 2002 Honda Accord V6 coupe experienced a stuck throttle and runaway acceleration. I slowed the car with the brakes, shifted into neutral, turned off the engine, then re-started it. It went back to redline. Finally, kicking the gas pedal caused the acceleration to stop. I noticed subsequently, that the cruise control had also failed. The dealership (darlings Honda, in bangor, me), told me that the throttle body had broken, near the attachment point of the cruise actuator cable. They recommended that I replace the throttle body. It appears to me, that there is a flaw in the vehicle, that allows runaway acceleration when a mechanical failure of this kind occurs. I contacted american Honda ("brian" at 800-999-1009 X 117738), and explained the problem to him. He got back to me two days later, and told me that Honda was unwilling to fix the problem. I believe that this issue warrants an investigation, as it could have resulted in death or severe injury. The same vehicle also has developed a transmission problem, over the last year or so. It feels like the transmission is beginning to fail. There is a delay between gears, that feels like the torque converter isn't locking up as fast as it used to. It makes pulling out into traffic more difficult. Despite there having been an admitted transmission problem, with 2002 V6 Accord, the dealer suggests that I try another transmission fluid change, instead of replacing the transmission. They cite the car's high mileage, 142,000 miles, as the reason that Honda will not pay for any safety or warranty related issues. Please advise.

- Hampden, ME, USA

problem #15

May 162009


  • miles
Last may, my 71 year-old mother in law lost control of her car shortly after starting it and crashed into our house. She stated that the car "took off" on her despite her stepping on the brake. Post-accident investigation did not reveal any defects and the car was repaired. I concluded that she had mistakenly stepped on the gas instead of the brake despite her claims to the contrary and considered the issue closed. There have been no subsequent incidents until last week, I went out to move her car (2002 Honda Accord). When I put the car in drive the engine raced. I was able to prevent acceleration because my foot was on the brake (important point) and I quickly shifted into neutral. The engine raced for several seconds and then returned to regular idling speed. I then drove the car briefly without further incident, however I made an appointment with Honda to have it checked out. The mechanics tested the car and found no clear cause of the racing engine although they did find cracked engine brackets and replaced them. While driving back from the dealer I parked the car for a brief stop. When I started it again I had the same event occur that I experienced last week. I drove home, called the dealer and they suggested that I bring it back. While driving back to the dealer I had two more incidents (once at a red light and once while pulling into the dealer parking lot). Each time I was able to prevent acceleration because my foot was on the brake and I shifted into neutral. I noticed that tach went up to 4500 RPM for several seconds before returning to normal. The dealer is now looking at the car again. Several points: I'm 54 and have been driving for 37 years without ever having caused a traffic accident or had a moving violation; my foot was on the brake (not the accelerator, as is often surmised in cases of sudden unintended acceleration). If it hadn't been, the car would have taken off. I cannot include VIN at present because car is at the dealer.

- Pt. Pleasant, NJ, USA

problem #14

Nov 252008


  • 55,000 miles
Accelerator pedal sticks every morning. You need to strongly depress pedal and the car lurches forward and then it is ok. I presently have it in a shop for repair. Repairman said it looked like Honda tried to fix this as there was yellow paint on throttle hood and a gasket had been replaced? I never took it to Honda for prior service on the throttle. I can have the repairman save the old parts. My son also had this problem with his Honda Accord 2001 and took it back to Honda and they repaired it as it was still under extended warranty. Neither of us had an accident because of this.

- Elizabeth, NJ, USA

problem #13

Apr 052006

Accord 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 39,683 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Honda Accord. While driving in reverse at 3 mph, the vehicle suddenly surged forward and crashed into two vehicles. A police report was filed. The mechanic stated that the failure was unrecognizable and he repaired the exterior of the vehicle. However, the failure recurred. No repairs were made. The powertrain was unknown. The current mileage was 55,300 and failure mileage was 39,683.

- Los Gatos, CA, USA

problem #12

Jul 172006


  • miles
2002 Honda Accord accident caused by car prematurely and uncontrollably lunging forward* the dealer was unable to duplicate the problem.

- Wilmington, NC, USA

problem #11

Apr 202007

Accord 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 33,718 miles
Re. three major factory defects of 2002 Honda Accord V6 ex I currently own four Honda vehicles. Two of them are 2002 Honda Accord V6 ex models. Honda released 2002 Honda Accord ex without any thorough final inspections. The malfunctioning on my two Honda was all factory defects deeply related to passenger safety. Honda does not care for human life sincerely as advertised. Honda does not deserve to be one of the best vehicles in the states. Since I purchased brand new 2002 Honda, three serious mechanical and electrical defects have been found: Seat belt sensor malfunctioning, timing related engine RPM surge, and powertrain breakdown. All three happened within 36,000 miles. First problem was a seat belt sensor problem. It was detected several months on both vehicles. And I asked a Honda mechanic to fix it. He told me that it would go away if you drove more. However, this problem was not gone. And couple of years later, I strongly ask Honda dealer to check and fix it. One was seat belt sensor problem and the other was the main seat belt controller. Second problem was a timing related engine surge. It happened on both Honda within 30,000 miles on the same day. RPM of both Honda went up and engine light was on. Even in braking, I could feel very strong force, which might break something. It was a sudden surge enough to cause a big accident. I want you to inspect this factory defect of all 2002 Honda Accord ex. Third problem happened in the first 2002 Honda. It was a powertrain problem. This brand new vehicle has surged several months after delivered to us. The mechanics in Honda dealerships said that it would go away if we drove more. The surge in first three years seemed moderate jolting when the second gear shifted to the first gear. But it got worse and worse. Finally, oil leaked. After fixing it, there are no more jolting or surging in gear transitions. This incident took place due to Honda's negligence and irresponsibility.

- Frisco, TX, USA

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