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 / 0
Average Mileage:
1,894 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 fuel system problems

fuel system problem

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2003 Honda Accord Owner Comments

problem #1

Jan 072003

Accord 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 1,894 miles


I purchased my 2003 Honda Accord ex V6 on Dec. 31, 2002. I spent 6 months researching many makes and models in order to find the perfect car for my wife and unborn child. I selected the Accord because I felt it offered the most safety features and has been one of the most reliable cars on the road for years. My only concern was that the vehicle was a first year redesigned model, but when I asked the service manager he said that the only thing changed between 2002 and 2003 was that the vehicle had high compression heads and that's where the extra horsepower came from. I still had some reservations, however I thought to myself, "it's a Honda how can I go wrong?" seven days after I purchased the car it stranded my wife at work. She finally got the car started after 20 minutes and got it home and told me it wouldn't crank. I thought maybe it was a fluck and it wouldn't do it again, 6 days later it did it again. I now thought maybe it was the security chip in her key causing the vehicle to shut off the fuel delivery system, so I told her we would get her a new key. Five days later using my key the car failed to crank. I continued to hold the key over to see how long it would take to finally crank and it took 45 seconds of continual cranking for the car to finally fire off! the next day I called the dealership and they told me to bring it in and so I did. The dealership was very helpful and concerned and they did everything they could to fix my car, however parts were on back-order and we would have to wait. They gave us a rental car and sent us home. It took Honda motor corporation 27 days to deliver our part and when we got the car back the next day it acted up again so the car went back into the shop for another 7 days. The dealership has completely replaced the entire fuel delivery system and the car still fails to crank about twice a month. This is rediculous, I bought this car to be reliable and safe for my wife and daughter, who is now 2 months old.

- Huntsville, AL, USA

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