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.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
48,000 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 suspension problems

suspension problem

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2003 Honda Accord Owner Comments

problem #1

Jun 162006

Accord 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 48,000 miles


Took my car in for a regular oil change. Hours later I received a phone call from the service advisor asking me, if I had time so he could talk to me regarding my car. I said, yes and the service advisor from Honda dealership went on to tell me that I needed my transmission fluid changed, brake fluid changed, and my engine coolant changed. The total amount of cost came to $500.29 which I thought I was being ripped off. The Honda service advisor also went on to tell me that I need to have my front struts replaced because they are bad. I noticed when I would make a right hand turn I would hear a squeaky noise. He confirmed that it was my front struts. I ask the service advisor how long does it normally take for struts to wear out he told me around 80,000-100,000 miles well my 2003 Honda Accord ex only have 48,000 miles on it. I'm assuming that I probably started off with bad struts in the beginning since I had my Honda Accord ex, I have had nothing but problems. Now, that my car is out of warranty I'm hit with a huge fee to get struts replaced on a car which I think was bad in the first place. My Honda Accord ex was originally purchased by me in December of 2002. I have been the only driver of the car. At this time I would never purchase another Honda Accord. I used to have an 2000 Honda Accord ex never had a problem. Since I have had this car there have been recalls on my car. I have had problems with the door latches, inside panel on passenger side coming off. Sunroof rubber coming unglued. I had to have the windshield replaced bad wipers which scratched the windshield up. New radio system. Trouble with the lights for the heated seats, dash board lights went out. Radio lights went out. I was sold a complete lemon. I believe Honda should look into my maintenance record and see all the problems I have had with this car and really consider replacing the struts for me. I do not have an extended warranty it's going to cost me $700.

- Tampa, FL, USA

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