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 2001 Civic has transmission problems, transmission problems & more transmission problems. Did we mention transmission problems? And a dangerous defect with the front airbag that didn't get recalled for 10 years.

Although eventually the defective 2001 Civic airbag inflators were fixed under recalls in 2011 & 2013, that meant for 10 to 12 years airbags were activating with excessive force where metal fragments went shooting into passengers when the airbag deployed.

As for the 2001 Civic's transmission woes? Honda conducted a major transmission recall in 2004 & settled a class action lawsuit for defective transmissions in 2006. But, neither the recall or the lawsuit included the 2001 Civic.

Last thing to consider - the 2001 Civic is the most-recalled car ever, closely followed by the 2002 Civic & the 2001 Accord. The 2001 Civic is the 4th most-recalled vehicle overall, only a Ford truck & two Ford vans have more.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
4 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
40,405 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.

2001 Honda Civic brakes problems

brakes problem

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2001 Honda Civic Owner Comments

problem #15

Mar 042014

Civic 4-cyl

  • 188,000 miles


I purchased this car used 3 months ago, had a certified mechanic inspect it and do all that was necessary to make it road worthy and safe. New timing belt, head gasket, brakes, engine mounts, bushings, tires, ac compressor, belts, etc. Etc. So after spending over $2500 in repairs I thought I had a perfectly running safe vehicle. And it did run beautifully until 2 days ago when driving home from work at around 45 mph without any sign or indication of trouble I heard a loud clunk from under the car and began to lose power. Luckily, with all the traffic around I was able to pull over to the shoulder of the road and found transmission fluid poring out from below. I had aaa tow the car to a reliable shop and was told I need a new transmission. Rough estimate for the repair $2000. - $2600. Needless to say I was shocked and angry. And now I find out that I'm not alone. There are hundreds and hundreds, probably thousands of complaints about the transmission failure of the 2001 Honda Civic. Honda has known about this design flaw for years and must be held accountable for leaving it's customers in danger with a faulty transmission..

- Phillipsburg, NJ, USA

problem #14

Jun 082012

Civic 4-cyl

  • 104,000 miles
I was driving home, back country roads, when suddenly my vehicle revved up to over 5000rpm while making a very slow turn. I brake, it stopped revving up, but when I started again it shuddered and then completely stopped moving. I could not go in any gear, I tried waiting a while, car runs fine but won't move. Sat by the side of the road waiting for a tow, have now been told the transmission failed and needs replaced. Of course, this will cost almost the value of the care, but that's not my main concern. While this did not cause me physical harm, I was planning on leaving for baltimore within the hour. Had this car waited 50 more miles to give out I would have been traveling at a high rate of speed on 695S along with many other Friday night commuters and could have easily caused a major accident and who knows how many people could have been killed, myself included" this car simply stopped moving within 1 minute - no lights on the dash, no prior notice of anything wrong. I keep this car maintained per the manual and was planning on keeping it for several more years. I have now found that this has been a well known issue for Honda for many years and still nothing is being done. There are so many complaints by so many consumers I can hardly believe there has not been a recall on this. How many does it take? how many will need to die in accidents caused by this before something is done"

- Conestoga, PA, USA

problem #13

Apr 102007


  • 128,000 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Honda Civic purchased brand new in 2001. She stated that the SRS airbag light continued to illuminate on the warning panel. She received a recall letter pertaining to the failure. The dealer stated that the vehicle would be repaired in 5 days. She requested a rental vehicle at no cost; however, the manufacturer denied the request. The brakes had been replaced over four times in a period of 4 years which resulted in the struts being damaged. The transmission was replaced twice. The fuel pump, air conditioning system, alternator have also been repaired and the power locks were inoperable. The failure mileage was 30,000 and the current mileage was 128,000.

- Henderson, NV, USA

problem #12

Jun 012007

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles


Brakes never worked right, felt like not stopping quick enough, had replaced 3 or 4 times since 2001, but to this day, when stopping suddenly with brake pedal fully to floor, car doesn't want to stop & is scary. Was rear ended, radio & speakers quit working, replaced & alarm quit working, had to have it completely removed & had damaged fly wheel. Alarm malfunction was causing car to run in "safe mode" and car was using too much gas. The gas indicator is not accurate, and slow to adjust to empty or full levels, even when in perfect weather. Even now I am certain that I do not get good gas mileage in city or highway driving & feel this car is vastly overrated in every way! SRS indicator light is always on for 3 years now, red in color, I never knew this was a problem before reading bulletins ( but do now). Right front window was slow to roll down for months, then wouldn't roll up in cold weather, and now won't work at all regardless of weather conditions. Is stuck, and where I thought it might be a simple fuse issue, now we're finding out it will be a $600 window motor issue. Not a very happy Honda customer right now. Ironically, I bought this Civic because of a prior positive experience owning a Honda crx, which was wonderful. This Honda Civic 2001 has changed the way I view Honda's in general, unfortunately.

- Sierra Vista, AZ, USA

problem #11

Jan 312005


  • miles
2001 Honda Civic brakes went out on vehicle resulting in an accident. The incident happened 1 day after the consumers daughter purchased the vehicle.

- Anaheim, CA, USA

problem #10

Dec 012001


  • 7,049 miles
Problems with brake equipment on 2001 Honda civi LX. The consumer complained to the dealer about the brakes grabbing. The technician determined that he vehicle needed a rear wheel cylinder because it was leaking. Both rear wheel cylinder's were replaced. Eight months later the vehcile was still exhibiting brake problems. This time the dealer replaced the master cylinder. For several months after tese repaires the vehicle continued to have brake problems. The consumer is concerned because the vehicle has 2000 mile left under the warrany.

- Rockaway, NJ, USA

problem #9

Oct 152002


  • Manual transmission
  • 20,000 miles


Rotors resurfaced and master cylinder replaced at 20,000 miles in Oct 2002. Rotors resurfaced again in April 2003 at 32,000. Now rotors and master cylinder needs to be replaced at 42,000 miles. Honda refuses to replace stating that the warranty was up at 36,000 miles. They have blamed me for riding my brakes which I dont... I put 24,000 miles on the car a year and use my cruise control 90% of the time. They blamed people who rotate the tires for tightening the lug nuts too tight... I have never rotated my tires so that is nill. Then they asked if the car is parked near a sprinkler because if the rotors get wet they will rust. They are blaming anything they can so they dont have to pay. Well.. the lemon law is on my side and they will pay. This is my 5th brand new Honda and will be my last. Atleast Kia stands by their vehicles.

- Quincy, WA, USA

problem #8

Nov 152002


  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,000 miles
A/C doesn't get cold, can't get Honda to fix as been this way since new. Brakes went bad with about 15000 miles on them. Were bad before that, still does not stop right, and has a vibraton when stopping transmission has a thumping like noise some times while idling. Had to replace strut on passanager side, couldn't get Honda to pay for all of it. I think one on driver side is bad also. Service manager told me this was a problem with the Honda Civic

- Pedro, OH, USA

problem #7

Aug 142003

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
I have an ongoing issue with a popping noise coming from the front brakes. After going in reverse, and then proceeding forward, at the first application of brakes there is a popping noise that sounds like metal shifting or binding. It will not make the noise again until the next occurrence of going into reverse and then coming to the first stop. After being taken to the dealer, the noise will diminsh for a day or two, and then resume as normal. The dealer indicated that they are not adjusting anything on the brakes. The dealer also indicated that there was a change in the design of the brakes for the 2001 model year that causes this noise. It sounds bad, and I'm afraid it will lead to a brake component failing.

- Springboro, OH, USA

problem #6

Aug 132003

(reported on)


  • 40,000 miles
While driving, when attempting to stop the vehicle, and upon depressing brake pedal vehicle failed to stop, causing extended stopping distance. The cause of the problem has yet to be determined. Consumer has made contact with dealer.

- Milpitas, CA, USA

problem #5

May 292003


  • miles


On 5/29/2003 the driver applied pressure to the brake pedal and the car would not stop. The same problem occurred last year which resulted in an accident.

- Lake Worth, FL, USA

problem #4

Mar 232003


  • Manual transmission
  • miles
Car has been nothing but problems since purchased in March 2001. Brakes have been replaced 2 times for vibration problems again 4000 miles later brakes are bad. Tires worn to unsafe tread depth w/ 2500 miles. Front struts both blown, told by dealer that they were on national back-order"?" as to when they will be available. Driver seat rocks, dealer fixed once saying a shim was broke, again 8000 miles later driver seat rocks again. Paint on car has many small rust spots. Clutch must have flat spots on it, as when I release clutch to start moving there is a jumping sensation able to be felt by driver. Again car has been nothing but problems.

- Harrisburg, PA, USA

problem #3

Feb 102003

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 23 miles
I purchased a 2001 Honda Civic coupe ex, in November 2000. It has been nothing but problems ever since. Ive been to two different Honda service centers almost 20 times now. The car has 23,000 miles on it and has gone through 3 sets of brakes. The car completely died on two occasions, both needing battery to be boosted. Then all of the dashboard lights were flashing crazy. On one of those occasions, it died right in front of Honda, after they assured me that my car was fine. This has been an ongoing problem with Honda. They fail to find any of the serious problems that are continuing. The car makes all kind of rattling and clicking noises when driving, Honda finds nothing. The windows/windshield fog up, defroster does not work well, Honda finds nothing. All four tires are leaking, Honda at first find nothing wrong, now say I have to replace tires. The driver's seat is loose and rocking, Honda replaced seat track twice, problem continues, took car in again for seat, Honda finds nothing wrong. Seat rocking gets worse, making load noise when driving, afraid for safety. Now the car is getting worse, car brakes without putting foot on brake, car is sluggish, driving funny. I think this is the transmission that is going to go bad. It stalls to start very often, then completely failed twice, needing boost. Im very concerned for my safety at this point. I even reached out to Honda Consumer Affairs in California, they did not help at all, in fact they were rude and even threatened me, while I had the rental, to report the rental stolen because I asked if I could hold the rental until Honda fixed my car (especially since the car had died right in front of Honda, and to make matters worse, my car was dented, twice, while being "fixed" by Honda that day as well) I am completely disgusted with the car and the service ive gotten. There are numerous other problems I didn't list here, too many to list. I would appreciate any help in this matter, thank you.

- Franklin Square, NY, USA

problem #2

Feb 202003

(reported on)


  • miles
The brake pedal felt spongy, the dealer replaced the master cylinder, however the problem recurred.

- Naples, FL, USA

problem #1

Nov 302002

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 24,000 miles
When consumer shifted the gears, the engine surged and vehicle suddenly accelerated, resulting in a collision, consumer applied brakes hard, but car would not stop. Related recall 01V329000, consumer's V.I.N. not included. Ts upon impact the air bags did not deploy. It is also noted that the technican experienced the same condition when entering the vehicle to be serviced. It was determined that the transmission was faulty. Consumer sustained minor injuries and there was front end damage....

- Arnold, MD, USA

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