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.


fairly significant
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
14,500 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 electrical problems

electrical problem

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2003 Honda Accord Owner Comments

problem #2

Mar 212006


  • miles


Noticed Honda factory service bulletin #05-034 explains why headlamps dim at night, faulty circuit in fuse box of 2003, 2004 and some 2005 Honda, why is this not a recal?

- Fairhaven, MA, USA

problem #1

Oct 042004

Accord 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 29,000 miles
10/4/2004 - driving 65 mph and car completely shut off - lost power steering and brakes. In shop for 5 days and said problem's fixed. 2/7/2005 - driving 50 mph and happened again - lost power steering and brakes. In shop for 5 days, dealership said it was fixed. *jgb2/13/2005 - driving 45 mph and car shut off again - lost power steering and brakes. Back in shop currently. Safety concern - life has been put in jeopardy 3 times now.

- Jacksonville, FL, USA

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