Notes: The 2003 Honda Accord suffers from widespread transmission failure & problems with the stereo backlight failing. 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.

The stereo backlight problem has been an issue since these Accords were only a few years old. Honda eventually issued a recall which covered the repair for 7 years/100k miles, which was nice while it lasted but now that period is over. Honda initially was replacing the entire radio ($800) but eventually began replacing just the PCB which at ~$300 is much cheaper. That sounds like a deal, but keep in mind we're talking about a backlight bulb that costs $2 to fix in most other cars.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 1
Average Mileage:
9,300 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 Accord brakes problems

brakes problem

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2003 Honda Accord Owner Comments

problem #1

Oct 152003

Accord 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 9,300 miles


I was traveling on the interstate and my gas pedal locked, then my steering system, followed by the gas pedal. I was surrounded by huge trucks and was traveling with small children and was able to stop the car. I then repeatedly smashed the brake pedal and forced the steering to stir me to the side of the road the car went into the ditch and came to a fairly abrupt stop. When I arrived to the dealership, they told me that it was a problem with the alternator, but suggested that I should replaced the water pump. I asked for an engineer to look at the car and be given a statement of safety before I risked my life driving the car. They agreed when my brother-in-law asked but I was denied after he got off the phone and spoke with me although my car is 90 days old and under a full bumper to bumper warranty.

- Orlando, FL, USA

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