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:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
18,608 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 #3

Sep 092006

Accord 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 32,000 miles


My daughter was driving her 2003 Honda Accord under sunny skies and good road conditions. As she slowed and made a slight right hand turn to enter an exit ramp off of I-26 outside of charleston SC, the brakes locked up pulling her towards the concrete barrier on her right hand side. She instictively pulled the car back to the left. At this time the brakes released and she went into the left concrete barrier. Both her and a friend who was riding with her were not seriously hurt. The car sustained approximately $4,900 in damages. She estimated that she was going 40 mph at the time when the brakes locked up. The brakes have not been looked at in detail yet. After repairs we will have them inspected. Looking into the history of the 2003 Accord showed me that this model has a long history of brake problems with many people complaining. When I discussed this with my local dealer, hendrick Honda, they informed me that they thought there was not a history of bad brakes on this car. I feel otherwise. Because the car was in the way of traffic and could still be driven, my daughters friend drove it out of the way and no police report was filed. One last thing. These brakes have locked up on me a idle speeds and had been checked previously by hendrick Honda. When checked, they said they were serviceable.

- Summerville, SC, USA

problem #2

Aug 302004

Accord 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 12,823 miles
My 2003 Honda Accord ex needed new rotors and brake pads at 11,000 miles. I do not ride the brake and am rarely (maybe once every 2-3 months) in stop and go traffic. I was charged $350 by my dealer to get this problem fixed. I started to wonder why my car had this problem. After internet research, I am finding out I am not the only one with this problem. In fact, it's quite common and something needs to be done.

- Rancho Palos Verdes, CA, USA

problem #1

Feb 012004

Accord 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 11,000 miles
Honda Accord, 2003 warped brake pads

- Lothian, MD, USA

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