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10.0

really awful
Crashes / Fires:
6 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
122,776 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.

2003 Honda Pilot drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2003 Honda Pilot Owner Comments (Page 1 of 5)

problem #91

May 262015

Pilot

  • 200,000 miles

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

On May 26, 2015, I was traveling North on I-5 at 60 mph when the wheels of my car seized. At which point the car began a rigorous slide, black smoke billowed as the tread of my tires peeled off. The force of the slide eventually jammed the tires sideways causing the car to hop as it propelled forward, finally coming to a stop about a mile from the starting point. Needless to say it was a horrific ride, which still causes me some stress. The car was towed to bill's tech trans where they informed me that the transmission was faulty. Bill's sent the faulty transmission to the maker. At that time I was unaware of the recall on Honda Pilot 2003 transmissions. After hearing of the recall a couple of months later, I informed american Honda of my incident. They requested receipts pertaining to the incident which I provided in full 3 times. One of the four customer service representatives had lost some or all of the paperwork that I had sent. It has been a year and a half of dealing with american Honda and they continue to put me off, even closing the claim at one point; they sent a letter which stated, "we have attempted to contact you in regards to your request, but have not been successful in reaching you." I called immediately and they informed me they had closed the claim due to my lack of responding to their phone calls. I told them that both my home phone and cell phone keep logs of who calls and that they are not on either one. American Honda reopened the case. Since then I have been rebuffed repeatedly. About a month ago I was told someone was reviewing the case for possible reimbursement and have heard nothing since. It seems as if they do not want to honor the recall on the 2003 Honda Pilot transmission. Is there anything you can do to help? american Honda recall case no. 04263486

- Vancouver, WA, USA

problem #90

Oct 202016

Pilot

  • miles
I drive between 20-40mph and my Honda shakes and shudders for 8 seconds then goes away. Any idea what can that be.

- Kent, WA, USA

problem #89

Sep 212016

Pilot 6-cyl

  • 134,000 miles
My Honda Pilot is having difficulty shifting gears in the city and on the highway. I will be moving in a few weeks and traveling about 40 miles on the highway everyday. A few days ago I called Honda after looking up recalls and there was a transmission recall number 04V176000. I was told to take it to the Honda dealer and if it is a problem with the transmission it will be replaced at no charge. I took it to the dealer and told them what Honda told me and they said it is probably the torque converter. (code P0740) the supervisor was going to call Honda and get back to me. I feel very frightened to travel on the highway when my check engine light is still on and having trouble with the transmission. I just can't believe that a 2003 Honda Pilot with only 130,000 miles would have issues with the transmission and/or torque converter !! if it is causing gears to chip or break I don't want to be driving on the highway and possibly be injured or even killed ! or causing injury to others.

- Appleton, WI, USA

problem #88

Sep 162016

Pilot

  • 150,000 miles

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

The contact owns a 2003 Honda Pilot. While driving various speeds, the vehicle lost power. In addition, the accelerator pedal was depressed, but the vehicle failed to accelerate. The contact was unsure about what warning lights were illuminated. The failure recurred on numerous occasions. The vehicle was towed to a dealer where it was diagnosed that the transmission needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The vehicle was previously repaired per NHTSA campaign number: 04V176000 (power train). The failure mileage was 150,000.

- Orange, CA, USA

problem #87

Sep 062016

Pilot

  • 150,000 miles
Transmission failure at 150K car became difficult to drive and was unsafe. Happened quickly.

- Orange, CA, USA

problem #86

Jun 082016

Pilot

  • 180,000 miles
Had to replace water pump and belt payed for it at homda dealer then noticed it had a recall on it dealership didnt notify me of the recall. Now I'm having problems with the transmition dealership said they couldn't find the problem but it also has a recall. But when I searched my VIN it said no recalls were found. The transmition periodically comes out of gear if I stop quickly or 1st thing in the morning or if I go over a speed bump slowly or sometimes randomly in the middle of driving in traffic. I can switch it into 1st 2nd or 3rd and get it moving again. It hasn't happend at high speeds yet. And the the metal under the seats is all rusted. At this rate the transmition will cause me to have an accident and the seats will come off and the airbags that have also been recalled will kill us im highly dissapointed in this vehicle.

- Everett, WA, USA

problem #85

Jun 232016

Pilot

  • miles

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

This goes with the complaint # 10876282, I just entered. I needed to correct my VIN # by adding the number 2 in the front of the number. On the previous complaint I started the VIN# with H, not 2.

- Saint Louis, MO, USA

problem #84

Jun 232016

Pilot

  • 160,000 miles
While driving on city streets in traffic and slow to 29 or 39 mph I feel a shudder or vibration. Also intermittently my "D" light flashes when turn on my Pilot but the maintenance light never comes on. This has been happening last 6 months. I have 160,000 miles

- Saint Louis, MO, USA

problem #83

Jun 202016

Pilot

  • 174,000 miles
When the vehicle is in motion and I have to press down on the gas to accelerate/ speed up the vehicle quickly the driver seat bounces backwards/moves and it feels like its going to come off the frame its mounted to like some bolts may be broke or something. The car locks are messed up. The both front door locks have to be unlocked with a key. The inside unlock mechanism only unlocks the driver side passenger door and the trunk. In order to unlock the passenger front and the passenger rear locks a window has to be rolled down and you have to reach in and manually unlock it and those also have to be manually locked back when you exit the vehicle. Also, the passenger air unit does work. It does not blow out air even with the rear control on. The inside car lights have to be manually cut on and off and not set to come on when the door opens and closes because it runs the battery down. Sometimes while driving the headlights flicker. And the power port to charge phones, etc. Works but anything plugged into it gets hot real fast. All that points to electrical issues. The air bag lights kept coming on and going off. The transmission light has been flashing D and did not stop until fluid and filter was changed. So far that seems to have helped. And last but not least, the contacts in the ignition switch act defected. The key has to remain in the ignition switch and the spare key has to be used to unlock the car because if the key is removed, it does not want to go back into the switch to crank the car. The switch does not want to accept the key and turn to crank the engine once it has been removed from the switch. Even trying to turn the steering wheel and pressing the brake to release the switch doesn't work. And the gear shift stick/shaft acts almost like it's not park, but it was put in park.

- Menlo, GA, USA

problem #82

Apr 162016

Pilot

  • 167,400 miles
Second gear failure and shifting issues, 4th gear pressure switch failure, tc clutch failure; all resulting in seizing while driving at highway speeds, unable to shift into the next gear, unexpected shifting into a lower gear causing the vehicle to decelerate. All items were experienced while driving on the highway roads and without warning causing a safety hazard.

- Westfield, IN, USA

problem #81

Mar 052016

Pilot

  • 185,000 miles

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

The contact owns a 2003 Honda Pilot. While attempting to accelerate from a stop, the accelerator pedal was depressed but the vehicle failed to respond without warning. The failure recurred on numerous occasions. The vehicle was taken to a dealer where it was diagnosed that the transmission needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The vehicle was previously repaired under NHTSA campaign number: 04V176000 (power train). The failure mileage was 185,000.

- San Lorenzo, CA, USA

problem #80

Mar 222016

Pilot

  • 195,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Honda Pilot. The contact stated that the vehicle independently decelerated while driving at an unknown speed. In addition, the ABS warning indicator illuminated. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic where it was diagnosed that the two front wheel speed sensors needed to be replaced. The vehicle was towed to the dealer where it was confirmed that the speed sensors and the automatic transmission needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired.the contact referenced NHTSA campaign number: 04V176000 (power train); however, the VIN was not included. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was approximately 195,000.

- Alexandria, VA, USA

problem #79

Mar 102016

Pilot

  • 196,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Honda Pilot. While driving various speeds, the automatic transmission warning light illuminated. The contact also stated that there was transmission fluid leaking in close proximity to the transmission sensor. The contact stated that the transmission was overheated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer on several occasions to be diagnosed, but the mechanic was unable to duplicate the failure or retrieve a fault code. The vehicle was not included in NHTSA campaign number: 04V176000 (power train). The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 196,000.

- Waynesboro, VA, USA

problem #78

Jan 282016

Pilot

  • 137,800 miles
While driving, I was stopped at a red light. When the light turned green I made a right hand turn and started to increase my speed. The RPM's increased at a very rapid rate, but the car did not shift. I was unable to accelerate my speed and there was a whirling noise in the engine. I tried manually shifting into a lower gear, but I was still unable to accelerate without the RPM's rising. I eventually had to shift into neutral three times before the car would automatically shift.

- Odessa, NY, USA

problem #77

Dec 012014

Pilot

  • 125,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Honda Pilot. The contact stated that while driving at any speed, the vehicle failed to accelerate and the check engine warning light illuminated. The failure recurred numerous times. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the torque converter clutch solenoid valve needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired. However, the failure recurred. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 125,000.

- Readeng, PA, USA

problem #76

Jun 082015

Pilot

  • 128,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Chevrolet Pilot. The contact stated that while driving at approximately 30 mph and the accelerator pedal depressed, the vehicle stalled as the check engine warning light illuminated. The vehicle was restarted. The contact mentioned that the check engine warning light illuminated several times. The vehicle was taken to a dealer where it was diagnosed that the transmission needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 128,000.

- Jasper, TX, USA

problem #75

Nov 242015

Pilot

  • 168,000 miles
Transmission was included in recall but we were never notified. Experienced catastrophic failure at 168,000 miles. Lost power on the freeway going 65 mph with no warning. Honda refusing to replace transmission because of the age and mileage of my car, despite the known defect in the transmission.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #74

Apr 242015

Pilot

  • 100,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Honda Pilot. While driving 30 mph, the contact discovered an abnormal grinding noise and a transmission leak. The contact pulled over to the side of the road and the vehicle was inoperable for 20 minutes. The contact restarted the vehicle and took it to the dealer. It was diagnosed that the transmission and seal needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 100,000. The VIN was not available.

- Pompano Beach , FL, USA

problem #73

Jun 012015

Pilot

  • 185,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Honda Pilot. The contact stated that the transmission failed. The contact stated that the vehicle was taken to the dealer in 2004 for NHTSA campaign number: 04V176000 (power train). The dealer repaired the oil cooler, but did not replace the transmission. The transmission failed and the manufacturer refused to replace it. The vehicle was never fully repaired. The VIN was not available. The failure mileage was 185,000.

- Richmond, IN, USA

problem #72

Dec 182012

Pilot 6-cyl

  • 135,000 miles
Owner driver was stopped on red light along with 20 other cars, the driver was last in the lane and other driver did not applied brakes, this vehicle was banged from the back. Body damage was repaired by westminster Honda in costa mesa. California, body repair cost of $ 3,500 was paid by insurance company of the person who was at fault, the auto transmission replacement cost of $ 6,500 was recovered from the me who was not at fault. The question is at that time the air bag was not deployed because of fault" after that I got recall notice from american Honda for two air bags driver side and passenger side, the notice came in the month of January 2015, first they delayed the repair task by making an excuse that they are very busy and first appointment is available on February 28 th at auto nation Honda in gilbert AZ then I got an E mail and a call from dealer that the parts are on back order, and they would not know when part will be available. After that I called american Honda, they have intervened and assured me that auto nation Honda will call me to schedule appointment again. Then I gave 4 - 5 calls to auto nation Honda, till today as of April 19th this repair is not fixed even though all parties know that this is critical to the life of drivers and passengers in this vehicle. Now I am in round rock Texas, so I will need to see new dealer will somebody control these auto companies and dealer for compliance" thanks

- Round Rock , TX, USA

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