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.

CarComplaints.com Notes: The 2003 Honda Accord suffers from widespread transmission failure & problems with the stereo backlight failing. 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.

The stereo backlight problem has been an issue since these Accords were only a few years old. Honda eventually issued a recall which covered the repair for 7 years/100k miles, which was nice while it lasted but now that period is over. Honda initially was replacing the entire radio ($800) but eventually began replacing just the PCB which at ~$300 is much cheaper. That sounds like a deal, but keep in mind we're talking about a backlight bulb that costs $2 to fix in most other cars.

8.4

pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
$2,601.00
Average Mileage:
100,537 miles
Total Complaints:
160 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace the transmission (68 reports)
  2. not sure (51 reports)
  3. had the transmission rebuilt (17 reports)
  4. honda corp. will replace autotrans. as a good will service (8 reports)
  5. new transmission (8 reports)
  6. replace the torque converter solenoid (5 reports)
2003 Honda Accord transmission problems

transmission problem

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2003 Honda Accord Owner Comments (Page 3 of 8)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #120

Mar 072012

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 87,799 miles

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

I was driving on the highway today at 60 miles per hour and suddenly the car downshifted to the first gear, which made the car decrease speed at such a rapid pace the car behind me almost rear ended me. The car ultimately completely stopped, despite stepping on the gas pedal. I had to turn the car off in the middle of the highway and restarted the car. It than started to work but only to fail again in a matter of minutes. I utlimately got off the highway on the next exit and repeat the turn off turn on process multiple times before i got to a mechanic.

- , New York, NY, USA

problem #119

Feb 032012

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 114,000 miles

I was driving and my car downshifted roughly and the RPM Redlined. The transmission shifts roughly from 2nd to 3rd gear. When i pulled over and tried to drive again, my car would not shift from parking to drive. I am joining the number of other people with transmission problems with the honda accord 2003. I was quoted 2200 to rebuild the transmission.

- , Lithia, FL, USA

problem #118

Feb 142012

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 123,000 miles

Although this transmission was repaired for the first transmission failure at 63K miles - by a reputable repair shop (and - I might add - a recall for a transmission cooler previously did not prevent the failure)...It has now failed again at 123K miles - with the same symptoms - slipping when auto shifting.

- , Fremont, OH, USA

problem #117

Nov 202011

Accord V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 95,934 miles

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

For the past month the car has hesitated to shift into 3rd. We had the Transmission serviced on Thursday and today Sunday while driving out on the highway the Transmission downshifted to first and the tires locked up. I was going down a hill and before I could get into neutral it downshifted or went into reverse on it's own again.

I COULD HAVE BEEN KILLED! there were a group of motorcycles behind me, thank God they were being aware; I immediately place on the emergency flashers and continued down the hill in neutral. I have seen on the internet this is a problem for this year's Accord's v6 Automatic. All of these cars should be re-called and have their transmissions replaced with a safe one. This is $3500.00 we don't have to spend on car repairs.

We bought the Honda because of it's reputation and reliability. I don't believe in Honda anymore. There are so many more car manufactures that have caught up. "Please Honda, if you have a heart, you will re-call these cars and replace the transmissions. I don't want to hear were a family of 4 got ran over by a big truck from the rear end because a transmission decides to down shift while running along at 65mph.

Sincerely,

David Davis

- , Fuquay Varnina, NC, USA

problem #116

Oct 152011

Accord EX 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 107,000 miles

Also owned a 2002 Accord EX coupe. Burned twice by faulty Honda transmissions.

- , Germantown, TN, USA

problem #115

Dec 012011

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 117,000 miles

My car was a part of the transmission recall. Really poorly designed transmissions. Mechanic tells me that there is no guarantee it will work even after the fix because the design is flawed to begin with.

Rip off. Stay away from Honda

- , San Jose, CA, USA

problem #114

Nov 292011

Accord EX-L 3.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 111,200 miles

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

Just bought my 2003 Honda accord V6 just over a month ago. It had 111,000 miles on it. Unfortunately i was not aware of this issue and of course the dealer never mentioned it. I was under the assumption that honda's are good cars. this is my first and maybe my last. But, the sales man also told me it had a timing chain not belt.( he said they switch in this year model) not true,it's a belt.. after driving the car for about three weeks it started to slip out of gear or it is slipping into first. revs go very high and then eventually it's ok. But, this has happened about 4 or 5 times.

- , cincinnati, oh, USA

problem #113

Nov 082011

Accord LX 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 141,000 miles

Automatic transmission should last the life of the car. 300,000 miles plus

- , Parker, CO, USA

problem #112

Aug 242011

Accord LX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 112,000 miles

I have been getting my car serviced on a regular basis and all of a sudden my car starts jerking and not changing gears..check engine light is on..the drive signal is blinking repeatedly..i take it to the honda dealership and they quoted me $2500 im a single parent working and going to school..i do not have that kind of money and to remind u this is my only means of transportation..i call honda customer service to ask about a Goodwill Repair to help cover the cost..they gave me a case number just waiting to hear back from them..good luck to me..i didnt know honda had so many transmission problems..ughhhh..im done with Honda for real i thought they were excellent cars..lemons should i remind you...

- , Athens, GA, USA

problem #111

Oct 032011

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 87,000 miles

I CAN'T BELIEVE IT, MY TRANSMISSION IS KAPUT, I HAVE TO DRIVE IT IN 2ND GEAR BECAUSE IT WON'T GO OVER 20 MPH IN DRIVE. AM LOOKING INTO GETTING A RE-MANUFACTURED TRANSMISSION FOR ABOUT $4000. VERY DISAPPOINTED AS I LOVE THE CAR AND DON'T WANT TO BUY A REPLACEMENT.

- , Greenville, MS, USA

problem #110

Nov 012011

Accord LX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 110,000 miles

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

It's hard to believe that this transmission gave out after that little time and cost that much to replace! I used to appreciate the value of Honda quality, but this has put it all in the trash.

- , Lincoln, NE, USA

problem #109

Jul 252011

Accord LX 2.4L

  • Manual transmission
  • 141,000 miles

I bought a beautiful used Accord with 141,00 miles. It drove wonderfully, the transmission was as smooth as butter to shift, and it seemed like there were no mechanical problems. Less than a week later, I find that in order to shift in and out of 2nd gear, I have to double clutch because my synchros have gone bad. Having owned Hondas before this I expected high quality in a used vehicle, and have been severely disappointed with my purchase. I don't have the money to have the transmission rebuilt- I spent more than I wanted to, but I thought I was getting a used Honda and the extra cash would be worth it.

After looking through the complaints here, I cannot believe that Honda hasn't issued a recall on these transmissions- they are completely unreliable. And the safety issues with a bad transmission are obvious. Will someone have to die before Honda admits their mistake?

- , Selinsgrove, PA, USA

problem #108

Jun 112011

Accord

  • Automatic transmission
  • 142,000 miles

I purchase a Honda because of its reputation as a reliable car and for longivity. I took care of my care with the standard recommeded maintance. I can't afford the repairs now. Lost my job a couple years ago and just got back to work. I'm a home hospice nurse and I need my car. I'm still trying to dig myself out of the hole from my job lost and now this. I don't have the money to repair it. I'm totaly screwed.

- , Levittown, PA, USA

problem #107

Mar 152011

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 103,561 miles

Honda Norris dealership quoted me over $4500 to put in new transmission. They said the transmission was on its last legs. Just got a quote from a mechanic for under $2500 and he told me that honda is aware of the problem and is offering a partial discount on their transmissions. Norris honda never mentioned this as being an issue with honda accords and they never mentioned any discounts for a new transmission Which leads me to believe that Norris honda was aware of the discount and was going to pocket the savings.

- , B, MD, USA

problem #106

May 292011

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 94,000 miles

As with everyone else on this site, the transmission on my 03 Accord, which had been seen regularly for scheduled maintenance by a Honda dealership, crapped out. I wasn't surprised about the transmission crapping out, since I've read enough to expect that from this car.

However I was deeply offended and disappointed by the treatment that I received from American Honda customer service when I called to request that they share the cost as a "goodwill repair." They insisted that I pay to have the car diagnosed by Honda, even though it had already been diagnosed by a certified transmission shop, before they would even discuss a goodwill repair. When I pressed them (hard) they admitted that they had no intention of covering it due to the mileage, and the fact that it was "out of warranty." Duh. They wanted to squeeze that last bit of blood out of me though, by sending me to my local dealership for a second diagnosis. I have lost all respect for this company. Car buyers, there are other companies out there that do more to deserve your loyalty. Honda needs to own up to this defect and make it right.

If your 03 Accord transmission fails prematurely, make sure that you report your failure to the NHTSA. If they receive enough complaints, especially of situations in which the car could have caused an accident, they may eventually force a recall.

- , Tallahassee, FL, USA

problem #105

Jun 032011

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 99,500 miles

HONDA WAS NUMBER ONE, TOP DOGG IN MY HEAD BUT NOW THAT I OWN THIS 2003 ACCORD.. FU#$ HONDA! NOT A HONDA PERSON ANYMORE, UNLESS THEY REPLACE MY TRANSMISSION FOR FREE. 99500 BLOWN TRANNY? WTF! THIS AINT A DAEWOO!!

- , Lemon Grove, CA, USA

problem #104

Mar 232011

Accord EX-L 3.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,384 miles

The car has numerous occasions during any given day that the shifting will be jerky, rough, and unpredictable. It has many times not even shifted out of the gear that it is in while accelerating, mind you this is an automatic. The more miles I put on the more the occurrences occur and with seeing the price of transmission repairs. . .

- , Delta, OH, USA

problem #103

Jun 272011

Accord EX 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 131,000 miles

I started having trouble with the car when it wouldn't shift gears. I brought it to a Honda dealership and they said my engine mount needed to be replaced and there was nothing wrong with my transmission. They replaced the engine mount and changed the transmission fluid. Less than a week later, the same problem with the gear shifting started happening again. It would not change gears at all. I had to get it towed to a transmission shop and will need a new transmission.

- , Ville Platte, LA, USA

problem #102

Apr 202011

Accord EX Coupe V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 152,000 miles

This is second time my transmission has failed. First time it was 4 years ago with 80k miles. Now with 150k miles. I went to dealer and they want $4000 to $5000 for new transmission. I don't know what to do. I tried to call Honda to get some answers and some help, but no satisfying answers.

- , Paducah, KY, USA

problem #101

Jun 222011

Accord EX 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 99,850 miles

It pisses me off that I have had the car for 5 years and this is my SECOND go around with having the transmission replaced. I will NEVER buy another Honda POS.

- , Houston, TX, USA

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