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.


pretty bad
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
3,864 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 windows / windshield problems

windows / windshield problem

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2003 Honda Accord Owner Comments

problem #3

Apr 012003

Accord 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 5,000 miles


Driver window makes a creaking noise while driving. If you lower the window just barely so as not to hear wind noise, it will sometimes lessen the noise. Otherwise, it is very loud and annoying.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #2

Sep 062003

Accord 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 4,591 miles
(1) a. window being scratched by something in panel. Both driver and passanger window. B. at about 16000 miles it was noticed that the transmission was leaking so badly I couldn't drive out of the dealership. ( I believe the car may have been leaking since purchase. New with only 36 miles.) C. trunk liner sagging. D. when making left hand turns if you have the sunvisor out it can swing and hit you in the head. E. passenger door latch not activated. Could not open door from inside. (dealer forgot to install this on window repair.) F. motor mounts not installed correctly. G. belt tensioner needed replacement. H. car pulling to the right. F. black seal around door frame warping. (2) no consequences from any of these failures. Except loss time having to leave car overnight for several days. Who know what longterm effects of a leaky transmission, belt tensioner, and improper motormounts have on the car. (3) under warranty the dealer corrected every problem. Mosts times more then one repair for the same problem was needed to correct the problem. For the tranmsission the dealer tried to stop the leaks with hondabond. The next morning I had leaks in the drive way. They had my car for a whole week on the first fix attempt. Finally Honda replaced the transmission with a new one. Nothing was done about the visor because the dealer said if they install a new one it will do the same. My windows are still being scratched by the felt lining in the window panel.

- Phoenix, AZ, USA

problem #1

Apr 022003

Accord 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 2,000 miles
I have a 2003 Honda Accord 4 dr ex purchased in January of this year. I have a constant problem with the front seat driver and passenger windows rattling or ticking. I have taken the car in twice and have scheduled it for a third time next week. The dealership does not seem to be able to fix the problem. They have admitted that other cars on their lot have this problem including one driven by a sales mgr. They have also called Honda America but have received little if any guidance on how to fix the problem. I will commend the dealership for their efforts to fix the car but I will pursue the lemmon law if this is not fixed.

- Cypress, TX, USA

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