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CarComplaints.com Notes: Yes, the Honda Civic receives a lot of complaints because so many were sold. And sure, car parts only last so long and things eventually break. But it's never good to see this many transmission complaints, especially when the average mileage at failure is just north of 100,000 miles.

Especially when you consider that it's predecessor also has a nasty history with transmission complaints.


really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
107,183 miles
Total Complaints:
260 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace transmission (132 reports)
  2. rebuild transmission (56 reports)
  3. not sure (51 reports)
  4. replaced transmission, Honda covered cost of parts (9 reports)
  5. open a case with honda corporate (7 reports)
  6. scrapped car (2 reports)
2002 Honda Civic transmission problems

transmission problem

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2002 Honda Civic Owner Comments (Page 1 of 13)

problem #260

Oct 282015

Civic EX 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 160,000 miles


Complete automatic transmission failure after following Honda's recommended service intervals. I'm not a hotrodder. In fact, I've been told I drive too cautiously. Probably won't purchase another Honda.

- , Capitola, CA, USA

problem #259

Oct 152015

Civic LX 1.7L 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 112,500 miles

Car had no symptoms and suddenly failed in city traffic. Would not budge an inch. Had to get it pushed off the road! Car had better than factory recommended services done on the transmission, yet it failed suddenly without warning! "Them's the breaks", I guess?

- , Iowa City, IA, USA

problem #258

May 052015

Civic LX 3.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 125,122 miles

Owned Honda's year 1974, 1981, 1997, 2002 and 2015. ONLY EVER HAD PROBLEM WITH 2002 AT 125,000 MILES (always did maintenance on car) and the transmission with out. I contacted Honda regarding their "good will repair" had I know they would not offer any assistance or even act like they cared I would have never purchased another Honda. So I am basically stuck with either paying $3500 to get the transmission fixed or selling the car for whatever I can get (1,000 or less from what people have said) even though it has been well maintained and services and still should have many miles left.

I will NEVER recommend that anyone buy a HONDA again, and really don't want the 2015 anymore since Honda don't care about their customers. Thanks Honda, you showed how much you cared. Did I mention I just paid the registration and had a tuneup on the car a month and a half before the TRANSMISSION FAILED, leaving me stranded on way home from work.

- , Pacifica, CA, USA

problem #257

Jun 072013

Civic SI 1.7L

  • Manual transmission
  • 119,303 miles


My 2002 Honda Civic SI has been a good car from the very first day but major problems developed 11 years later. I had to replace the transmission because the idler reverse gear was not staying in its proper position which caused first and second gear synchros to wear out. The car basically was trying to shift into reverse while shifting up through the gears. There was a clicking noise while shifting through the gears. Installed used transmission at my expense. Total cost roughly $2000.

- , Sudbury, ON, Canada

problem #256

Sep 022015

Civic EX 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 187,000 miles

I am disappointed that Honda did not recall this transmission problem. This car is basically worthless now. I don't think it is worth fixing.

- , Cedar Park, TX, USA

problem #255

Aug 032015

Civic EX 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 121,426 miles

Purchased the car used with just 60,000 miles on it (now has 121426). Has been an excellent vehicle and the service department where I have it serviced ( a different, closer dealer) has always commented on what great condition the car is in and how well I have taken care of it (I have!). Suddenly the engine warning light came on and the dealer checked it out to find these two DTC codes:

P0700 A/T system

P0730 incorrect gear ratio

There have been no symptoms of a problem whatever, and there are still none. Yet, they suggested replacing the transmission with a used one with 89,000 miles on it for a total of $2,700, with a 6month/6000 mile warranty!!!!! Which they even said was not a good deal. Anyway, I am still looking into options, and the car is still running fine although with the check engine light still on, which caused me to be "Rejected" by MA vehicle inspection. I now have 60 days to fix it, or take it off the road. Service department says it is a "crying shame because the car has been so well taken care of."

- , Northfield, MA, USA

problem #254

May 042015

Civic ES 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 98,000 miles


We purchased this 2002 Honda Civic last fall for my daughter to drive back and forth to college. It had 88,000 miles on it. Not much for a Honda, or so I thought. This is my first Honda and it will be my last. The car has less than 100,000 miles on it now and while my daughter was on a busy roadway, the car stops and cuts off. She is able to restart it and get off of the road, but could only go at about 5 mph. The codes say that we need to replace the transmission. I called Honda and reported the failure. My complaint is noted. I was advised to take it in for the airbag recall and I certainly would, if only I could drive it.

- , Charlottesville, VA, USA

problem #253

Jan 102013


  • Automatic transmission
  • 112,000 miles

This was a couple years ago so I'll try to remember what happened: transmission started acting up a mile or so from my house on Christmas Day of 2012, with no warning. It suddenly just acted like it was in neutral and I was stuck at the intersection, engine revving, for 20 seconds or so. Turned the car off and on again, and was able to drive it no more than 5 mph the rest of the way home. Luckily, being Christmas, there weren't many cars on the road!

A friend of mine has an auto shop, and quoted me the best price, $2,800, to rebuild the transmission with a 3-year, 75,000 mile warranty. (The dealer quoted over $5,000!) He fixed it and it was running fine since then.

Fast forward to today: transmission is slipping again, and although it's still under that warranty, I now live 3,000 miles away from that shop. I spoke with my mechanic friend, who says that the company that makes the transmission is national, so he is currently working on finding a shop near me that's in the network. Hopefully I won't end up paying again to get it fixed. What a pain in the behind.

- , Chapel Hill, NC, USA

problem #252

Feb 032015

Civic EX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 211,000 miles

I bought this Honda brand new in 2002, I'm the original/only owner and no real problems at all. Maintained this always reliable car and wanted to give it to my granddaughter - can't help with tuition, but could have helped with transportation. I have 211,000 miles on the car. Driving on a busy hwy to Veterans Hospital and suddenly car revved up because the transmission suddenly disengaged. I had to get over & coasted onto a side street with the momentum the car had left over. Had it towed 30+ miles home. Seeing the costs others have incurred, not sure how we can afford that. Will share wife's 2005 vehicle until we figure it out!

Very disappointed to see the exact problem so many others are having - obviously a known issue to Honda & Honda never took care of it or their now formerly very loyal customers.

- , Mt Dor, FL, USA

problem #251

Oct 172014

Civic LX 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 144,158 miles

I've always trusted Honda's as they were said to be dependable . This has been an extremely dangerous experience. The transmission failed while negotiating a left hand turn on a highway major intersection. I caused a rear end collision and endangered my own and other people's lives.

This issue is very clearly a manufacturer fault and in view that so many other people have experienced a similar failure, I've lost faith in Honda. I have maintained my vehicle 100% and checked my fluids on a weekly basis. This failure gave no warning and as undeserved.

Honda...... I will never take a chance with another Honda as long as I live ....... I've owned three others and this has never happened. I also have no choice but to ensure that everyone I know is aware of Honda's refusal to correct their mistake ... absolutely unacceptable in today's competitive "service first" environment.

You really let me down Honda.

- , Burlington, Ontario, Canada

problem #250

Oct 052014

Civic LX 1.7L V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 134,105 miles


No real warning and the transmission will not go into gear while driving. Next the engine light illuminated. Luckily no car was behind and managed to move over to the slow lane and with help from some nice folks, we push the car into a nearby parking space.

- , Dunwoody, GA, USA

problem #249

Aug 022014

Civic LX 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 200,000 miles

Transmission was working fine until it suddenly wasn't. No warnings, no indication that there was any problems. Of course, it didn't fail while pulling out of the driveway, but rather 100 miles from home.

Transmission goes into no gears. No noise, no grinding, nothing - just no engagement. Am going to investigate and see if I can isolate the issue - including reading other comments here.

- , Sandy, OR, USA

problem #248

Feb 122014


  • Automatic transmission
  • 220,000 miles

Not sure if it's because I have 220,000 miles on the car, but after reading the complaints I decided to add my experience. I bought the car in 2008 at 147k, and noticed immediately that the car would go into reverse if I simply budged the gear shift. It slipped, A LOT. Not thinking it was something worth going to the dealer over, I made a mental note to be very careful not to hit it. Finally, after a few more years of this, my transmission failed in February of 2014.

This is a great car otherwise, lasting me in the brutal weather of both Ohio and Alaska. I plan to fix it because it should last me at least another 100k miles, regardless.

- , Vancouver, WA, USA

problem #247

May 212014

Civic LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 88,000 miles

I took excellent care of my car, and had it regularly maintained. I drove it very lightly, and it only had 88,000 miles on it. I was driving last week, and heard an unusual sound one time that day but it was driving as it usually did (other than that that, there was no warning whatsoever that the transmission was about to fail). Thank God when the failure happened, I had just turned onto a side road in the country, and was going slowly, with no cars around me. However, it still didn't coast even enough to pull it off of the road. I am thankful that it didn't happen 5-10 minutes sooner, when I was on a very busy 55mph road, and had just made a left hand turn with a large Mack truck semi approaching me. I can't even think about what could have happened - the good thing to having to deal with this, is that nothing worse happened.

My car needed new struts soon as well as had recently had an airbag failure, in addition to the cost of replacing the transmission, it is not worth it. Have an offer for $500 to sell it to mechanic, and of $1,000 to sell to someone who will use/resell the parts. I loved my car, but due to the problems it was starting to have with such little/light driving, this being an issue for many, and no concern or retribution from Honda (I called but wasn't helped at all), and more than anything, the potential danger this posed and what could have happened (this bothers me the most, as it clearly is an issue Honda should have addressed with a recall), I have a very bad taste in my mouth re. Hondas and don't think I'll ever purchase one again.

- , Kalamazoo, MI, USA

problem #246

May 112014

Civic LX 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 88,634 miles

I had this honda since 2001 no problems at all.Maintained this car impeccably.I only have 88,000 miles on the car.Driving home on The long Island Expressway,In the far left lane with many cars around me suddenly car revved up because the transmission suddenly disengaged.I had to quickly get over to the service lane under the power the car had left over,Thanks to God I didn't get rear ended or bashed in the side before that happened.People were telling that this car had transmission problems and I didn't listen.I wish I did.1900 dollars I'm out to rebuild the transmission.As soon as I get it fixed I'm trading it in for something

- , Long Island City, NY, USA

problem #245

Mar 182014

Civic LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 199,799 miles

I am not quite sure where to start, but let me tell you that I am frustrated at the number of repairs I have had to put into this car. I bought it nine years ago as a certified pre-owned. I have taken good care of it and followed the maintenance schedule. I have even done a few additional upgrades that were not required.

I first noticed the transmission slipping last year. I took it into a Honda dealership and a few local garages several times to have the problem diagnosed and fixed, but they all turned me away and said they couldn't find the problem.

Well, the transmission completely died on me at a most inconvenient time. I had to have the vehicle towed to a garage. They wanted to charge me $1600+ to put in a refurbished transmission from a junkyard with no warranty. The dealership said I could get a Honda remanufactured transmission for $3500 with a 3 year warranty. $1600 does not sound so bad except that there is no guarantee that it won't die within a month and need to be replaced again! The trade-in value on it is only about $2000 in my area. Basically, I'd make more if I sold it for scrap metal ($500). This wouldn't be so frustrating if it had not needed repairs last year that cost me $1200.

I have been a faithful Honda owner for many years. I have talked to other Honda owners who say that if you take care of your Honda it will last forever. I have taken good care of this car, but it continues to have major problems! Honda, I am disappointed in you!

- , Mechanicsburg, PA, USA

problem #244

Apr 112014

Civic LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 150,030 miles

Transmission failed and confirmed by Berlin City Honda of South Portland Maine (invoice #765319). Estimate to replace transmission was $4,725. Car will be sent to the scrapyard.

- , China, ME, USA

problem #243

Apr 302013

Civic LX 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 196,000 miles

My daughter was driving home from school and the car quit. Wouldn't go forward but it would go in reverse. So I drove it home in reverse. Luckily, we weren't far from home. The car has sat for almost a year now because we did not have the money to have the car repaired. My Honda mechanic tells me it will run about $1500 for a used transmission out of Japan installed with 30,000-40,000 on transmission.

We own 3 Honda's now and my other daughter owns a Honda as well. I am very disappointed with this transmission failure and do believe that Honda should be doing something to recall this problem. Yes, it does give me a bad taste in my mouth when looking to purchase another Honda.

- , Pittsboro, NC, USA

problem #242

Jun 012005

Civic LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 94,000 miles

We bought the Civic in 2004 as a Re-certified Honda. Less than a year later the transmission went completely out. Thankfully it WAS less than a year so it didn't cost us anything but time. Ever since then though the transmission clunks randomly when it shifts.

- , Douglas, GA, USA

problem #241

Jan 172014

Civic LX V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 99,000 miles

Brought a 2002 Honda Civic at excellent KBB value, because of the Honda name.

In 3 months, I have replaced the transmission and cooling system, all cost me around $2000.

Never recommend used Honda Civic to anyone. I had 2003 Kia and 2006 Hyundai earlier, both were very good compared to this Civic

- , Doral, FL, USA

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