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:
121,626 miles
Total Complaints:
61 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (32 reports)
  2. replace transmission (16 reports)
  3. have transmission rebuilt (10 reports)
  4. sell the car (2 reports)
  5. take off slower (1 reports)
1998 Honda Accord transmission problems

transmission problem

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1998 Honda Accord Owner Comments (Page 3 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #21

May 102009

Accord LX 2.3L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 121,000 miles


this is really f*cked up i use to love hondas but after this one there credibility went domn the drain i will never buy another Honda. you just lost another good customer every car ive had was a Honda i guess it's true want they said every good thing comes to an end. the Honda name was at the top of my list and from what i read in alot of other people top list i cant believe Honda would have so many complaint about transmissions going bad and will not do nothing i am really disappointed.

- , Reading, PA, USA

problem #20

May 012009

Accord EX 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles

Ok.... I bought my Honda Accord used with about 60,000 miles on it. At 65,000 the transmission went out. It would run untill it got hot and then it would slip gears.I didn't have the money to fix it, so it sat in the yard for 2 years while I made monthly payments on it and full coverage insurance. Long story short, I got it fixed. Than the cv joints went out,the radiator cracked, the window motor 3 times. Now the compressor bearings for the a/c are on there way out. The check engine light and mait. light have been on since I've owned the car. I finally put a sticker over the lights. They were a constant reminder of what a piece of sh*t this car is and what a loser I was for buying it. O yea, forgot to say the cat. converter doesn't work anymore so I can't pass inspection. The car only has a 100,000 miles on it now. I hate this car. It would make a great boat anchor.

- , Sugarland, TX, USA

problem #19

Apr 252009

Accord EX 3.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,100 miles

This nightmare happened on my birthday. The problem is the tranny and the symptom is a slipping when shifting between gears. I never would have suspected this from a Honda. Honda should made a recall.

- , Miami, FL, USA

problem #18

Dec 252006

(reported on)

Accord LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,010 miles


At about 89,000 miles I noticed that sometimes when I came to a full STOP and then accelerated, the transmission would lag for about 1/2 second before engaging. And when it engaged it sounded like it had slammed into gear, and the car jerked forward.

It felt like when you rev up an engine and then pop the clutch in a manual transmission. I thought it needed the transmission fluid changed (90k per the Honda manual). So I took it to my mechanic (great service and expertise). He changed the fluid and as I drove out of the shop I experienced the problem again. So, I thought well it wasn't the transmission fluid.

I was procrastinating about taking it to get checked out, since I thought that the warranty had expired at 36k miles. And I thought that I would have to pay for the whole repair bill.

On my way back from a Christmas get together last night (a 80 mile drive) my car was crusing at 80 MPH just fine. I stopped to pay a toll, and as I accelerated out of the toll plaza, the car up shifted fine until we got to about 40 mph. Then it started to downshift and up shift at random.

I eventually stopped on the side of the road, checked transmission fluid level. It was OK. Got in the car, shut engine off and re-started it. I thought maybe re-setting the computer might help. If I keep it at below 3000 RPM it up shifts ok and I never let it go beyond 45 mph.

I will take it to AAMCO dealer to see if they can help, and I will call Honda customer relations at 1-800-999-1009 to see if they are of any help.

Just wanted to let others know that in the last 2 hours my research has shown that Honda automatic transmissions have a problem, specially in the 2002-2004 Odyssey and 1998-2002 Accord

- , Orlando, FL, USA

problem #17

Dec 052008

Accord LX 3.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 77,128 miles

OK i have a 98 accord V6 and i have 77,128 miles on it. And i have tranny problems. It started to slip in December of 08. I was going to school on the freeway then out of no where the car redlines and im like what the heck ? then the car jerks into gear??? as I get off of the freeway it starts to slip and act as if the car is in neutral and wont go at all.

So i called my dad and told him the problem because he is a i went home while the car was jerking the whole time. It felt like someone hit my car from the back every time the car jerked.I barely made it home before the car didn't wanna go anymore.

Next day towed the car to my dads shop and connected it to the computer and some codes popped out and about solenoids. So my dad bought all the tranny solenoids and replaced them and flushed the tranny twice. It took about 2 weeks so my car could be done, after i got the car back i drove it and it slipped a couple of times then started to work perfect again.It started to work good for almost 3 months then it started to slip a lot and it would downshift by its self very hard every time i would slow down to a stop sign or red light.i told my dad and said that its the transmission and i'm going to have to rebuild it or have it replaced =/

After reading all the problems on our accords I think this really sux A$$ and would cost a lot of money.

My respect for Honda is gone now...... !

- , Norwalk, CA, USA

problem #16

Feb 162009

Accord EX 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 135,000 miles

One day when my wife and kid were traveling on highway, this problem started. the car started slipping gears. fortunately the next day was holiday and i took to local servicing place and they said transmission has to be changed and i cant risk driving the car. since this was car i use to commute to work i had to fix it immediately. they replaced with refurb Honda transmission. did anyone have the same problem and were anyone able to get Honda cover any of this expenses? please let me know, in this economic time i had to dig into my savings to fix this.

- , Nj, NJ, USA

problem #15

Dec 052008

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 132,000 miles


I just want to say thanks to auto beef and all the people who logged their complaints. I recently test drove a sharp looking Honda coupe 98 and I was almost sold on the car. I noticed one slip as I test drove it on the freeway and I was a little concerned but I thought "it's a Honda it can't be a serious problem can it".? Well after reading these complaints I see it was exactly what I would have thought it was, had I not been blinded by the rumors that Hondas are the best cars ever. Oh and by the way, I did mention it to the sales guy and he blamed the slip I felt on the tires. What a load of crap, those people will say anything to get the sale. He didn't care that 1 month later I might be out of luck trying to scrape up even more money on a new transmission. Thanks again autobeef.

- , Cleveland Heights, OH, USA

problem #14

Jan 222008

Accord LX 2.3lx Vtech

  • Automatic transmission
  • 89,000 miles


- , Marpo Heigth, Tinian, Northern Mariana Island

problem #13

Jul 012008


  • Automatic transmission
  • 165,000 miles

changed eth transmission at 111000 miles now it is slipping again. If I let the car warm up in the morning it is not so bad. I also use a feather touch on the gas. I am getting rid of the car 2 transmission , 2 alternators 2 starters electrical problems. in 8 years. Not a good car

- , New York, NY, USA

problem #12

Jun 012008

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 114,000 miles

Planet Honda, Golden, CO dealership told me this problem is extremely rare and that I was just very unlucky

- , Arvada, CO, USA

problem #11

Apr 062008

Accord LX 2.3L Ulev Vtec

  • Automatic transmission
  • 104,067 miles


Ok to hell with 1998 Honda Accords. I bought this car off a white lady who routinely takes the car to Honda for regular tune-up. I usually change the oil, transmission fluid at appropriate intervals but one day the transmission just shifted itself from D3 to D2. You don't have to apply that much force to move the transmission stick.. just like a nudge will move it.

I thought Hondas where to suppose to be reliable and especially ACCORDS. Research online and found that 1999 Accords had similar problems but less complaints. 1997, 1996 did not have many transmission problems..damn it should bought an older model.

Transmission fix is not reliable at all, replace w/ new transmission is out of the question. The car was bought for $5500 and new transmission costs $2500. Honda doesn't cover me so I'm screwed.

DO NOT BUY 1998's


- , San Jose, CA, USA

problem #10

Mar 012007

Accord EX 2.3L 4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 61,000 miles

This problem is on my daughters 1998 Honda Accord EX with the 2.3L ULEV motor and automatic transmission. When the car is cold. the transmission is late to shift from 1st to 2nd gear and slips during the shift. We found that by taking your foot off the gas like a standard shift that it will shift fine if you give it a second or two to engage. From what I have read, this has been an ongoing problem for years and Honda refuses to do anything about it. We have been driving Hondas in our family since 1986. We also have a 1999 Acura 3.2TL that has been just about trouble free for 140K. The Honda, on the other hand, should not be having tranny problems with under 80K on it and being well taken care of and babied all its life. HONDA, CAN YOU READ THIS?

- , Paxton, MA, USA

problem #9

Mar 042008

Accord EX 2.3L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 51,000 miles

Have very nice car with low miles and now transmission problems. I thought Hondas were

were suppose to be good cars. Called the Honda dealer this morning and they said

there is no recall and nothing they can do except CHARGE me to fix it. Nice job

standing behind the car. Just upset.

- , Portland, OR, USA

problem #8

Jan 072008

Accord LX Vtech 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 114,000 miles

Well, I wish that I had found this site before I bought the 98 Accord. I too have had catalytic converter lights, ck engine lights, etc. I have had car about 5 yrs now, 2nd owner, and now my tranny is slipping, shifting hard, etc. Only about 114K miles...very surprised. But now I read that this shouldn't be so surprising. Cost about 2500 to fix but not sure I motor just went out also. From reading this forum it appears that when I bought car in 2003/04 it was common knowledge in the industry that the tranny had problems and wish I would have ckd around further. Pls share any such websites with me. Car is still drivable but will have to do something soon..was considering 2004/05 Accord LX...any comments?

- , Medford, OR, US

problem #7

Jul 102007

(reported on)

Accord EX V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 103,000 miles

when the transmission first started giving me problems it would make a thunk noise when I stopped ... but then it got better and only did it sometimes, I am having it rebuilt .. the transmission guy says there is a kit, it cost $1597.00 plus hard parts, he still hasn't told me how much it will cost and he has had it 3 days ... when I asked him if it needed hard parts he said not many? When he first diagnosed the car he said he found clutch matter but it wasn't that bad and didn't think I would need many hard parts, How do I know how many hard parts if any he really had to replace?

- , Simi Valley, CA, USA

problem #6

Dec 112007

Accord EX 2.3L V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 150,000 miles

I bought the 98 Honda Accord in 98 and it was fine, then the check engine light came on at 30,000 miles and hasn't gone off since. They say it's the catalytic converter, but at the time I had already gone over my warranty. Then recently I noticed the transmission getting "hung up" as if it were in neutral, and then clunking into gear. It seems to get a little better as you drive it, but it's still an issue. Hopefully someone can tell me if this is covered under the recall in 1998 June, cuz I bought it in July 1998.

- , Hudsonville, MI, USA

problem #5

Nov 272007

Accord EX V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,000 miles

Purchased new 1998 Honda Accord in 1999 @ dealership. Noticed automatic transmission slightly slipping between gears in 2004 @ approximately 55,000 miles. Problem slowly worsened and brought to attention of local dealership in 7/07 @ 74,000 miles. Advised by dealership that Honda had problems with our vintage of transmission and was offering a 7 year/100,000 mile cost free replacement, whichever came first. Dealership advised that since we were over on time, but very low on miles, Honda America may cover 1/2 of cost replacement. I submitted claim to Honda and they refused to cover any of the replacement costs.

Even though I had purchased the vehicle new from a dealership, I never received a notice from Honda America or the Dealership that a problem with our model was identified and widespread.

We are now stuck with a vehicle that requires a transmission replacement at our cost.

Had Honda notified and/or recalled the affected autos, I would have returned it to our dealership for the necessary repairs well within the time limits, as the problem was identified by Honda in 1999, the same year we purchased the vehicle.

- , Santa Barbara, CA, USA

problem #4

Oct 052007

(reported on)

Accord LX 2.3L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

tranny slips between 2nd and 3rd gear right about 35 mph

- , Suffolk, VA, USA

problem #3

Feb 222007

(reported on)

Accord LX V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 110,000 miles

A few months ago the automatic transmission at 90000 miles on my well-maintained, gently-driven Accord started slipping into a lower (high-revving) gear, generally between 2nd & 3rd. A couple of days ago it started failing to get in gear at all. it behaved. Problem seems worst when car is cold, and mostly when (attempting to) accelerate from a stop.

Called dealer, who gave no indication that the problem is (apparently) common for Accords. Only learned this upon finding the site (via Google). Will update after I (attempt to) have the specific problem (and its cause) diagnosed.

- , Ballwin, MO, US

problem #2

Feb 062007

(reported on)

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 180,000 miles

One day, the transmission just started slipping when it shifted. the RPM would rev up to like 5000 before it shifted. it would then proceed to jerk violently. once you got into the 5th gear, you were ok. then the problem got progressively worse. i'm a college kid with no financial help. buses have been on time though.... what should i do?

- , Orlando, FL, USA

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