Notes: The 2002 Honda Accord suffers from widespread transmission failure, subframe rust, & problems with the airbag system (SRS). We recommend avoiding this model year like the plague.

The transmission begins slipping & eventually has to be replaced, typically soon after 90,000 miles & with a repair cost of over $2,000. Transmission failure has been a huge problem for the Accord & several other Honda models all through the early 2000s model years. Honda extended the transmission warranty to 93 months/109k miles for the 2000-2001 Accord as a class action lawsuit settlement, but owners of other Accord model years with transmission problems are out of luck.

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.

The SRS warning light likes to come on due to a defective seat belt sensor -- typically the driver's side. This sensor is covered under Honda's lifetime seat belt warranty, but some dealers charge a $100+ "diagnostic fee" or tell customers the entire SRS unit ($800) is bad.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
3 / 0
Average Mileage:
84,983 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.

2002 Honda Accord transmission problems

transmission problem

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2002 Honda Accord Owner Comments (Page 1 of 17)

problem #336

Jul 012008

Accord 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 37,149 miles


My transmission failed after only 37,140 miles. After negotiation, Honda replaced it; we shared the costs. Remanufactured transmission now failed; I regularly maintain it. Honda wants to charge $5000 to replace; Honda said they would pay 60% of parts; labor extra. Aamco rebuilds for $2200 - $2800 total parts & labor. Honda "offered" to share costs. Seems even more unreasonable given seeming inflated costs. has recorded over 640 complaints of 2002 Honda transmissions. Jan. 8, 2011 article, "Honda transmission problems seem to exist", the reporter states that one complainant; "parts of this document have been redacted to protect personally identifiable information pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA),5U.S.C.552(B)(6) is not alone in his disenchantment. The N.H.T.S.a. web site has some 570 transmission complaints from owners of 2003/2004 Accord. Many refer to problems with second gear. There are just over 700 transmission complaints from owners of 2002?4 Odyssey minivans. The safety Agency can investigate if it appears that a recall may not have solved a safety problem. But the Agency never started such an investigation. Last week, , a spokeswoman for the Agency, said such an inquiry was now being considered." The 2002 transmissions, like the 2003-04, appear to have even more complaints. I bought a Honda because of Honda's ads promoting their cars' reliability. Now I have to contend with two transmissions failing, and I only have less than 77,000 miles on the car!!! many people are suffering from the effects of a bad economy and paying for what appear to be defective transmissions isn't right, and it isn't fair. After hundreds of complaints about Honda Accord 2002 transmissions, it is time for the NHTSA and Honda to do the right thing and issue a recall for these transmissions and/or otherwise replace them for not more than $500 total parts and labor charged to the owner if the mileage is less than 100,000 miles. Please recall! information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6) updated 07/12/12

- Sarasota, FL, USA

problem #335

Feb 062011

Accord 4-cyl

  • 42,060 miles
Transmission slips, lugs, and hesitates shifting. Dangerous when trying to merge onto a freeway in heavy traffic and car does not reliably accelerate. Also dangerous when changing lanes. The car has always been well cared for. A check and change of the transmission fluid did not resolve the problem.

- Fremont, CA, USA

problem #334

Apr 142012

Accord 6-cyl

  • 120,000 miles
Transmission started slipping, would slip out of gear, would shift hard or not at all, lights on dash revealed something wrong with brakes...did as manufacture suggested turning off car and restarting...lights went off...few days later check engine light came on...took it to dealership...they told me $5000 I need to replace transmission.

- Ramona, CA, USA

problem #333

Mar 102012

Accord 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


Cpsc#I1230350A. 2002 Honda Accord. Consumer stated she attempted to come to a stop at the red light but her car was still accelerating. The consumer immediately put the vehicle in neutral, then park and shut the engine off. When she attempted to re-start the vehicle, the vehicle began revving extremely high. A passerby, who was a mechanic opened the hood, and discovered the accelerator cable was stuck and released it. Also, the transmission was replaced three times.

- Sicklerville, NJ, USA

problem #332

Aug 012011

Accord 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
2002 Honda Accord. Consumer states problem with vehicle transmission the consumer stated the transmission started slipping about 90 days ago and then the check engine light illuminated. The consumer took the vehicle to the dealer and a diagnosis revealed a new transmission was needed.

- Norcross, GA, USA

problem #331

Nov 012011


  • Automatic transmission
  • 118,000 miles
2002 Honda Accord. Consumer states premature transmission failure. The consumer stated the transmission began slipping and eventually had to be replaced. The second transmission was also defective and had to be replaced. In June 2011, the transmission began slipping again. While driving to the dealer, the check engine light illuminated. An inspection revealed the 2nd gear pressure switch had an error, along with another error which was a code for transmission failure, which were reset. In addition, the transmission was shown to be over-filled approximately 3/4 of one quart. The consumer left the dealership, but the transmission continued to slip.

- Verona, NJ, USA

problem #330

Aug 152011

Accord 4-cyl

  • 60,000 miles


Car delays shifting into second gear then shifts hard causing engine light to come on and the gear indicator to flash resulting in loss of movement. I have to shut the car off then re start to keep moving.

- West Milford, NJ, USA

problem #329

Jul 282011

Accord 6-cyl

  • 105,000 miles
The car had been running fine (2002 Honda Accord ex V6 with 105K miles) but felt minor slipping in low gears. Then suddenly the check engine & tcs lights came on and the D4 light was blinking. The car will not accelerate from a stop or slower speeds well at all. I have avoided being hit so far but just barely. I have been unable to accelerate properly and merge into highway traffic countless times. I have been almost rear-ended 3 times in the past 2 weeks when the vehicle will not accelerate when proceeding from a red light through a green one. After research have identified a widely known Honda V6 transmission problem since 1998 but Honda will not acknowledge or recall or repair.

- Decatur, GA, USA

problem #328

Jul 202011


  • 158,000 miles
At close to 160K miles, experienced harsh shifting between gears. Check engine light indicated an issue with the transmission. Only option is to replace with new transmission.

- Ca, CA, USA

problem #327

Aug 162011

Accord 4-cyl

  • 75,436 miles
Transmission constantly slips when accelerating. This is concerning because I cannot depend on my car to accelerate when I need to. I've taken the car to the dealership for repair and am awaiting their feedback.

- Seattle, WA, USA

problem #326

Aug 102011

Accord 6-cyl

  • 123,000 miles


2002 Accord ex-L V6: Car shakes when slowing down and when at a stop continues to shake and jerk then powers off. Car has been maintained with regular oil changes yet this continues to happen every time I drive the vehicle.

- Costa Mesa, CA, USA

problem #325

Oct 012009

Accord 4-cyl

  • 38,000 miles
My warranty replaced the original transmission in my car because it failed to work at 74.378 miles. American Honda replaced that free of charge and now the new one with less then 40,000 miles has failed. It was confirmed by the Honda dealer that this 2nd transmission needs to be replaced because it whines and the differential is slipping causing premature wear on the axles. They will not replace this one free of charge, they want to charge $4000 for repairs. The axles were wearing in Oct 2009 and were replaced at least four times before it was discovered that it was the transmission that was the root of the problem.

- Fogelsville, PA, USA

problem #324

Jul 022009

Accord 4-cyl

  • 101,000 miles
I have a 2002 Honda Accord. When traveling in high road and air temperature 95+ degrees my transmission began to jerk with stop and go traffic. I was on a long bridge and unable to pull over and stop. When I was able to stop I let my engine cool down. Ever since that incident my transmission has had a jerking from 1st to 2nd gear. I have been back to my dealership and service mgr stated nothing is wrong with your transmission. The service mgr. Knowing that my car year and model were recalled. I have taken the car to a transmission company recently and they advised me to return to dealership. My transmission is about to fail. I feel very unsafe when driving or pulling into traffic as my transmission has no power with this jerking. I never know when the vehicle will completely fail causing a serious accident to myself and others. I have had my transmission serviced according to the guidelines in my Honda manual. I have searched on the internet and discovered that the 2002 Honda Accord has been recalled. I, being the original owner, have never been notified by Honda.that my car needs to be brought to the dealership for repair. I need to have my transmission replaced and Honda will not stand behind there product.

- Kannapolis, NC, USA

problem #323

Feb 012009

Accord 4-cyl

  • 108,000 miles
I was told 2 years ago by a Honda dealership that a solenoid was defective in the transmission. Solenoid was replaced but problems did not go away completely. Transmission would shift, but hard and with great delay in 1st gear. I returned to 2 other dealerships but was told that the car did not have an issue. I will not travel with the car as I am afraid the transmission will fail when it gets hot as it did the 1st time when I was 300 miles from home. I recently took the car to a local transmission shop whom I trust and was told this is a common occurrence with this make and model. I was also told that a recall was issued but I never was notified by mail or phone even though this is a 1 owner car.

- Kannapolis, NC, USA

problem #322

Aug 082010

Accord 6-cyl

  • 170,503 miles
Dealer reports transmission failure. All required maintenance has been performed and car has not been abused. Honda refuses to issue a recall.

- Apache Junction, AZ, USA

problem #321

Jul 152011


  • 113,300 miles
The car is hesitating to go from 1st to 2nd and often jerking. It also makes a bussing noise when running above 45 mph. I just bought the car with a mileage 113,300 thinking that it is Honda, a durable car manufacturer. After driving a car approximately 20 days, I noticed the problem. So disappointed. Checked with a Honda dealer in Chicago and it is said that it has a transmission problem, costing close to $4K to replace with an aftermarket transmission or approximately $4.5K Honda part (both including labor fees). Given so many complains on this type of car (I have driven Dodge stratus and now going close to 210K with no single problem to a transmission), I would like to ask the Agency to support a recall of the part and request Honda to be responsible and take a full fix on the problem. Thank you

- Elgin, IL, USA

problem #320

Jul 062011

Accord 4-cyl

  • 93,500 miles
2002 Honda Accord SE V4 - 93,500 miles: While driving home from work, I stopped at a stop light and when I pushed the gas to take off, the car revved, but didn't go for several seconds and then started jerking as the car was trying to engage into first gear. From that point, every time I stopped at a light or stop sign, the car jerked wildly again and made horrible noises. Took car into the Honda dealer and was told that the transmission is totally shot and that I need a new one at a cost of $3950. Car has been kept up and fluid changes done regularly.

- Maplewood, MN, USA

problem #319

Jul 012011

Accord 6-cyl

  • 127,000 miles
Had car serviced as per manual at Honda dealership. Last service, I was told to have transmission fluid changed. Did that. Reported within a couple days that the transmission seemed to occasionally shift hard. Asked to bring back in for check. Did this. Dealer kept car for 2 days, ran tests, said no problems noticed. Picked up car, noticed within an hour again occasional slips on transmission. Drove it for about a month, transmission failed. Honda usa said "not their problem", dealer said "not their problem". I am very upset as this car was in excellent (garaged) condition.

- Tampa, FL, USA

problem #318

Jun 212009


  • 102,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Honda Accord. The contact stated that while driving approximately 40 mph she could hear a whistling noise coming from the engine. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer where the contact was informed a bearing within the transmission was causing the noise. The contact was also advised to replace the transmission. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 102,000 and the current mileage was 108,000.

- Elm Grove, WI, USA

problem #317

Mar 152011

Accord 4-cyl

  • 116,000 miles
1. bought car used, everything else runs fine (except regular maintenance was needed). 2. the transmission jerks between 1st and 2nd gear with a high pitch squeal being emitted at high mph. This car only has 116,000 miles on it. 3. nothing has been done yet, looking to get a recall on this because many Accord 2002 owners have this same issue.

- Hagerstown, MD, USA

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