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.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
70,000 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.

1998 Honda Accord transmission problems

transmission problem

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1998 Honda Accord Owner Comments

problem #2

Apr 212004

Accord 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,000 miles


If I put my vehicle in park, I have to fight with the shifter to get it out of park the next time I drive my car so I constantly keep it in neutral with the parking brake on. This has not caused any accidents and I have not had this problem fixed yet.

- Somerton, AZ, USA

problem #1

Aug 012002

Accord 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles
This complaint is similar to investigation number PE 03-014. My wife's 1998 Honda Accord (4 cylinder with automatic transmission) rolled away from the spot where she had parked it. Apparently she had left the vehicle in drive, but was able to remove the key from the ignition. When she returned from her errand, the car was no longer in the parking spot where she had left it. The car had rolled about 75 feet away, somehow managing to miss several other cars in the parking lot. Thankfully, she and our baby weren't halfway out the car door when the car rolled away. I verified that the key can be removed with the shifter in drive. I took the car to the Honda dealer here in Colorado springs, and they indicated that there may be a mechanical problem in the ignition switch, but that it isn't covered by a warranty or recall. They also said it would be pretty expensive to fix since the electrical part of the ignition switch would need to be replaced as well as the mechanical part and the electrical part of the switch has an anti-theft feature that reads a computer chip in the key and that the system would have to be reprogrammed (including the remote controls for the doors...). the car had about 60,000 miles on it when we first noticed the problem. We don't recall the exact date of when it happened, but it was during the summer of 2002 when we first noticed the problem. Thank you for your attention to this issue. Michael brady (719) 668-4068.

- Colorado Springs, CO, USA

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