Notes: The 1998 Honda Accord suffers from widespread transmission failure, peeling paint, & subframe rust. We recommend avoiding this model year like the plague.

The transmission begins slipping & eventually has to be replaced, typically soon after 100,000 miles & with a repair cost of over $2,000.

Peeling paint has also been a huge issue for these Accords. Most of the complaints are with darker paint colors -- especially green & blue.

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.


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
116,300 miles
Total Complaints:
43 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace transmission (19 reports)
  2. not sure (18 reports)
  3. rebuild transmission (6 reports)
1998 Honda Accord transmission problems

transmission problem

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1998 Honda Accord Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #43

Mar 132017

Accord LS 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 101,443 miles


transmission races without going in gear suddenly loud thud

I have my Honda from day one and very happy with it until a few months ago it began giving me "jerking" problems. Coming to a stop or slowing down and giving it gas it almost broke my wife's neck as the car jerked forward instantaneously as she drove it.

Driving today it happened to me twice in one hour as I drove to the store which really shocked me and almost struck the car that was in front of me. Since my mechanic doesn't do transmissions he recommended me to one that he uses.

I also found out that there have been plenty of complaints about that particular transmission and disappointed that Honda never made it a point to notify the people. At the beginning that my wife experienced this problem, I thought that she was probably giving it gas more than usually but as it began happening to me I knew different. Hopefully Honda will do it's part as to take care of the people that purchase their vehicles and not wait until a tragedy happens.

- Frank B., Staten Island, NY, US

problem #42

Jun 272016

Accord EX 2.3L I4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 151,000 miles

Like many 6th Generation Honda Accords, it had the infamous 1-2 gear hard shift, hesitation and flare but a day prior to the transmission shifting poorly, I noticed when I put the car into reverse, I noticed a heavy thud going into reverse. At first, I didn't think much of the problem, since I was on a steep hill, however, after coming back from getting something to eat the next day, I noticed that the transmission would jerk, hesitate and clunk while going into gear, especially 2nd gear, it was even worst when going up a hill. Because of this, it wasn't safe to drive this car on the highway. After taking the car to a good shop that specializes on Hondas, they said that the transmission was going out and required a rebuilt or replacement for around $2500. During this time also, the check engine light came on and with a OBD2 scanner, it confirmed 5 codes with 4 of them being Transmission related (like the P0740)!!! After searching around, I heard about Cottman Transmission and they confirmed that the transmission was going out and suggested a rebuilt for $2700. Got the rebuilt since I didn't feel like looking for a new car and it came with a good warranty of 36,000 miles/3 years. Just hope this rebuilt lasts. NOTE: If you get a 6th Generation Honda Accord with an automatic transmission, your transmission will eventually go out because of its design flaws.

- mmorgan94, Upper Marlboro, MD, US

problem #41

Jan 012006

Accord V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles

I bought my 1998 Honda Accord Coupe new. I started noticing a heavy thud when shifting from 1st to 2nd gear a long time ago. I'm guessing it started 5 years after I bought it in 2003 at about 50,000 miles, but it may have been earlier. I am very conscientious about maintenance and took it to the dealer regularly, but they never said anything about it. Nor did I receive a recall notice. I had hoped to make it to 200,000 miles, but it died while driving at 156,000 miles (see separate complaint) so I bought a new car.

- nepenthe, Goleta, CA, US

problem #40

Jun 042010

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 149,300 miles


I would like Honda to take responsibility and fix the problem with transmission

- Mario D., El Cajon, CA, US

problem #39

Apr 202010


  • Automatic transmission
  • 119,925 miles

This is my very first Honda and I am telling you I will never, ever buy another one. I had this transmission go at 193000. I had it rebuilt and spent $2900 out of my own pocket. Two weeks later this rebuilt transmission started to slip and slam into gear again. It spent another day in the shop. The whole transmission was gone through again. Again I was sent on my way only to have the transmission start slipping on the highway on the way home. Back in the shop it went. It's been there for 2 days now and they still have no clue what the problem is. Never have i been so disappointed. I'm glad I still have my 1993 Buick LeSabre with 205 000 kilometers in the driveway. I'm getting rid of the Honda.

- C G., Brandon, Maintoba, canada

problem #38

Jun 012010

Accord EXI

  • Automatic transmission
  • 39,146 miles

I have heard about auto beef from one of my friends. I m very new to it, i have just lodged a complaint. Lets see how auto beef helps me solving it out.

- memon, Hyderabad, Sindh, Pakistan

problem #37

May 012010

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 165,285 miles


I was terrified to find this website through Google, and browsed through the dozens of earlier complaints about the same problems i am having now.

A little backround, i bought the car used for 2,900, 8 months private sale. The car was in great shape, interior and exterior, engine ran great and i didn't feel any tranny problems. Seemed like i had made a great buy, but after 2 to 3 weeks i started feeling a slight thud when going into reverse, so i took it into Honda and they told me there was nothing they could do, just recommended i change the tranny fluid, anyways over the last 6 months or so its gotten really bad, so like a month ago i tried a tranny additive and it made it 10 times worst!!! couldn't believe it, needless to say i went and got the fluid changed, but still shifting into reverse when its cold feels like someone ran into the car, it practically throws you in your seat, and now more recently the shifting has become sluggish and jerky and its really bad in stop and go traffic, i fear its gonna go soon. absolutely love everything about the car and the engine still runs great, still not sure its worth trying to deal with this tranny problem. I wish i could blame Honda somehow but 265,000 km on its original transmission, id say they're holding up they're end. I'm going to go to my garage now and sit in the drivers seat and cry for a while now.

- Raph D., Vancouver, BC, Canada

problem #36

Aug 082007

Accord LX 3.0L V6 Vtec

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles

This is the only major problem I had with the vehicle. I have about 156k on it now and the transmission is doing the same thing. I purchased a Honda because I wanted reliability not problems.

- bsalgado, Anaheim, CA, US

problem #35

Sep 012005

Accord LX 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 84,000 miles

I purchased my Honda Accord Coupe V6 brand new in 1998. This car ran great until 2004, just after it passed 74,000 miles and when the extended warranty expired. I will file multiple complaints for this car because I have had too many problems after 74,000.

One of the earliest serious problems I had for this car was the transmission. It thuds, it slips, and sometimes won't engage in gear for say 5-10 seconds, which is scary when you're trying to make a left hand turn in a busy intersection. Usually it just thuds or slips, but at least the car has been drivable. I have been driving the car for about 50,000 miles with this transmission problem because I haven't had the money to fix it. At least the car has been drivable. See my other complaint -- now it won't start or stalls, which makes the car unusable.

- Denise A., Big Oak Flat, CA, US

problem #34

Nov 032008

Accord EX V6 3.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

I purchased my Honda with 90k miles; it was in immaculate condition with one previous owner who had the car serviced regularly and timely. After 1 1/2 to 2yrs I noticed loud, thudding while shifting. It is a serious thud that feels very uncomfortable and irritating. I'm sick because it has an amazing engine and body and I can't see the benefit of spending thousands to have it fixed. I buy Honda's to avoid this kind of problem and I'm feeling I can't count on getting 200k mileage out of them even though I maintain them to the manufacturers specifications.

- Jim S., Maple Grove, MN, US

problem #33

Nov 222009

Accord LX 2.3L L4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 132,012 miles


Well.......I am the second owner of this vehicle that was maintained at Westminster Honda from day one. I have all the service records that amount to thousands of dollars and thought I was buying a great car. But only 3000 miles later the transmission went out. It first started by banging into gear when I would put it in from park to drive then this problem continued to get worse, at every stop light there would be a two to three second delay before re-engaging into gear with a small bang. Then I started to hear noises from the transmissions and then it stopped working all together. I used to love Hondas and still think they make some of the best four cyl. out there but I am seriously considering going to Toyota from now on!!!! I also called American Honda to express my issue but it sounded like to me they are de-sensitized to this issue, from all the past complaints.

- rcontreras, Whittier, CA, US

problem #32

Sep 102009

Accord EX I4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 215,000 miles

There's a heavy thud and a jerk when shifting, especially between 1st and 2nd and hills make it worse. Sometimes it fails to shift and hits the rev limiter. Avoid this car!!!

- jsheck52, Hastings, FL, US

problem #31

Sep 232006

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 109,000 miles

I bought this car without having seen this website....stupid me. I test drove it and it seemed okay and figured 109K miles on a Honda is nothing. It didn't take long to figure out why the previous Honda owner bailed out. The transmission! I was able to drive it for a while but last month it started getting real bad...AND my trusted mechanic told me to be prepared to have most of the front end parts replaced (CV joints, ball joints, sway bars, and whatever else). He said they were loose, rotted/broken, as well as a muffler, and my alternator bearings where squealing I had to bail out too.

I would be willing to fix those things if the junkie transmission was up to par. So, after reading how Honda has been non-responsive to consistent complaints, and how the transmissions broke down for a second time, I just switched to Toyota. Bye, bye Honda...I wanted to like you, but you broke my heart.

- riccardo727, Rochester, NY, US

problem #30

Aug 172007

(reported on)

Accord LX 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 150,000 miles

I had a converter problems a couple of years ago (got it fixed). The heater went out the winter that just past (got that fixed). A month ago my car was diagnosed with needing a ignition switch. I was going to get it fix this weekend, until, I was unable to put it in reverse. I makes this loud cringing noise and does not move an inch. Now, I am driving my car unable to go in reverse. I have to take up two parking spaces when I go to the grocery store or have someone run in for me. This sucks. I am not finicially able to keep pouring money in this car and or able to fix every major thing wrong with it. I bought Honda because it is known to last as long as you take car of it. I have never heard of Honda having major problems. My cousin's car had 350,000 miles on it and was still running. I do not understand. I'm actually PISSED!!!!!

- srichardson, St. Louis, MO, US

problem #29

Jun 012006

Accord EX 3.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

I purchased my Honda with 87k miles; it was in immaculate condition with one previous owner who had the car serviced regularly and timely.

After yr1/2 to 2yrs I noticed loud, thudding while shifting, and yes I am shifting properly to reverse and park positions when the car is at a complete stop. The problem persists but not to the point of slipping. After having checked car complaints for a different problem I am having, it enraged me to know that if I donít have enough money to get the transmission rebuilt when it finally fails me I am out of a car.

The biggest concern I have with my ď98 Honda AccordĒ is the fact that it dies in transit at any given speed, in idle, and when itís hot outside with no signs of an overheating issue. When Iíve made too many back to back stops the Honda refuses to turn over until Iíve made 5-7 attempts at it or if I turn it over and give it gas right away then it will idle severely for about 30 seconds or so before resuming normal idle in park position. I service it regularly and have had all necessary fluid flushes and proper maintenance at the recommended mileage. This problem occurred about 130K miles. I have asked about possible fuel filter problems but I was told that because the filter is in the tank it shouldnít need to be replaced. Does anyone have an answer for me???

I am not car savvy to the degree of a mechanic but I know itís highly abnormal for a car to die in transit then start back up again with no apparent problem. I have talked to several friends and mechanics that are knowledgeable about cars and they have no possible explanation as to why this problem would be occurring. Honda offers no help or solution to this obvious continuous problem, only possible solutions that have no guarantee of fixing the mysterious problem they swear to know nothing about.

I would appreciate an answer from Honda manufacturers as to why you arenít investigating the reoccurring transmission failure problem and the mysterious ignition failure. Both sound like issues that should be investigated as recalls. I will be filling a complaint with the NHTSA and I advise anyone else with these similar issues to do the same.

- Veronica S., Sacramento, CA, US

problem #28

Oct 042004

Accord EX 3.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles

I too have the transmission issue with my 1998 accord. Bought it with 45,000 miles on it and it started to act up at around 100,000-120,000 I can't remember exactly. The problem starts off small and just very gradually gets worse. I have been driving it since then and just dealing with the problem. I now have 145,000 miles and it is getting to the point that I think I must get it fixed, especially with winter approaching and the problem is worse in the cold. Anyway, I am very unhappy with this car which will now cost me around $2000 for a rebuild. I just hope the rebuild works!!!!

- JACOB M., Glen Mills, PA, US

problem #27

Sep 092008

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

in regards to complaint #23 transmission issue Honda America has refused me any compensation stating my car age as the reason. I guess the had to say something I gave them all documentation of maintenance that I had performed which was done even sooner then the manual advised. I think the transmissions used in my Honda were defective right from the factory , the`transmission failed at 80000mi and again at 130000mi just 50000mi later and they both failed the same way a transmission fluid leak.For comparison I bought a 1990 accord LX 4cylinder auto new kept it ten years I beat the hell out of that car traveling to NYC. twice a week I put 182000mi on it before I gave it a good home and I NEVER had a problem with the transmission.I plan on filing a complain with the Attorney general of N.Y. I'm told if he gets enough complaints he'll act

- Cory C., Niskayuna, NY, US

problem #26

Jan 182008

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

this is an update to #23 98 accord transmission. Honda America has refused me any compensation in the cost of replacing my transmission .Giving the reason as the age of my Honda, They had to say something, I did the required mantanice even sooner then the manual advises. picture this the transmission failed at 80,000 and again at 130,000

just 50,000mi later and they both failed the same way transmission fluid leak only difference is this time I caught it in time. I gave honda copies of documentation of all maintenance as well as every repair I ever had done. For comparison 1990 I bought a

accord LX seden new kept it ten years and put 182,000mi on it 4cyliner auto never had

one problem with the transmission.I plan on filing a complaint with the Attorney General of New York I'm told if he gets enough complaints he will act

- Cory C., Niskayuna, NY, US

problem #25

Sep 012008

Accord LX 2,3 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles

I bought my 98 Honda accord lx 4cyl used from the second owner. It had 55000miles on it when I got it and I didn't really notice any problems. After about 2days of driving I starting noticing a hard down shift to first. It felt like it was jolting out of gear every time I came to a stop. I took it in to my local Honda dealership and they diagnosed it and said I needed a new transmission which would cost $3600 plus $1500 for labor. There is know way this is happening with only 55000miles. I bought this car for $5000 and I am not about to throw $6000 more into it. What should I do? Please help, any advice. I live in Maui Hawaii and I am a college student that cant afford this big job.

- Kapono M., Kula, HI, US

problem #24

Mar 012008

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 103,000 miles

The tranny shop says a new transmission is all they can recommend. So much for Honda's dependability! If anyone knows of any recall, PLEASE let me know!

- Martin V., Parrish, FL, US

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