Notes: The 2001 Civic has transmission problems, transmission problems & more transmission problems. Did we mention transmission problems? And a dangerous defect with the front airbag that didn't get recalled for 10 years.

Although eventually the defective 2001 Civic airbag inflators were fixed under recalls in 2011 & 2013, that meant for 10 to 12 years airbags were activating with excessive force where metal fragments went shooting into passengers when the airbag deployed.

As for the 2001 Civic's transmission woes? Honda conducted a major transmission recall in 2004 & settled a class action lawsuit for defective transmissions in 2006. But, neither the recall or the lawsuit included the 2001 Civic.

Last thing to consider - the 2001 Civic is the most-recalled car ever, closely followed by the 2002 Civic & the 2001 Accord. The 2001 Civic is the 4th most-recalled vehicle overall, only a Ford truck & two Ford vans have more.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
80,021 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.

2001 Honda Civic engine problems

engine problem

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2001 Honda Civic Owner Comments

problem #20

Dec 062014

Civic 4-cyl

  • 98,605 miles


While driving on the interstate, the car was no longer accelerating. While stepping on the gas the engine was revving but the speed would not increase. As I was only a short way from an exit, I was able to get off of the interstate, down the exit ramp, and to the stop light prior to the local roads as the car would still drive but only less than 40 mph. Upon getting to the stop light, the car no longer responded to the gas pedal going forward, I was able to back up to a space in between turn lanes. I placed my hazard lights on and called triple a for a tow truck. My car was towed to a local auto body where I was informed the car's transmission had gone, to their surprise as the car is in "great condition".

- Cambridge, MA, USA

problem #19

Mar 182014


  • 78,000 miles
Driving my car with only 78,000 miles the engine light went on and within 15 minutes the car lost power to move foreword/backward etc.........took to the gas station glendale mobile broadway, everett, MA, the car has always been taken care of, ,, I know it is old but only 78,000. He put in a used transmission for 1900.00., there was no warning only minutes from the time check engine went on until complete failure on highway.

- Everett, MA, USA

problem #18

Mar 042014

Civic 4-cyl

  • 188,000 miles
I purchased this car used 3 months ago, had a certified mechanic inspect it and do all that was necessary to make it road worthy and safe. New timing belt, head gasket, brakes, engine mounts, bushings, tires, ac compressor, belts, etc. Etc. So after spending over $2500 in repairs I thought I had a perfectly running safe vehicle. And it did run beautifully until 2 days ago when driving home from work at around 45 mph without any sign or indication of trouble I heard a loud clunk from under the car and began to lose power. Luckily, with all the traffic around I was able to pull over to the shoulder of the road and found transmission fluid poring out from below. I had aaa tow the car to a reliable shop and was told I need a new transmission. Rough estimate for the repair $2000. - $2600. Needless to say I was shocked and angry. And now I find out that I'm not alone. There are hundreds and hundreds, probably thousands of complaints about the transmission failure of the 2001 Honda Civic. Honda has known about this design flaw for years and must be held accountable for leaving it's customers in danger with a faulty transmission..

- Phillipsburg, NJ, USA

problem #17

Mar 042012

Civic 4-cyl

  • 157,361 miles


Was driving on bluegrass parkway in Kentucky. My check engine light came on. I hit a small bump in the road and both airbags deployed. I tried getting out of harms way. Then my engine cut off. I had no power steering and brakes it wouldn't stop the car. I went off the road and hit a tree causing severe damage to my car. Honda placed a recall in December 2011 but never contacted me of the recall. I was taken by ambulance to the nearest hospital. Suffered wrist and ankle damage so who is responsible"??"

- Radcliff, KY, USA

problem #16

Nov 212011

Civic 4-cyl

  • 123,119 miles
The exhaust manifold is cracked, causing dangerous fumes to enter the cabin of the car. The fumes are most noticeable when driving at low speeds, and they are enough to cause a strong headache/light-headedness which could potentially cause an accident. There are hundreds of complaints filed on the internet for this exact model/year Honda.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #15

Oct 242010


  • 99,000 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Honda Civic. The contact stated there was a crack in the exhausted manifold and smelled gasoline. The contact took the vehicle to the dealer and was told there was a fuel leak. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 99,000 and the current mileage was 99,200.

- Moor Park, CA, USA

problem #14

May 212011


  • 55,000 miles


The contact owns a 2001 Honda Civic. The contact was driving 50 mph when the engine warning light illuminated as the vehicle suddenly stalled. The contact was able to continue driving, but the vehicle suddenly stalled a second time. The vehicle was inspected by an independent mechanic and they advised her that they would recharge the battery, but could not guarantee that the failure was attributed to the battery. The vehicle was not repaired and while attempting to take the vehicle toa second mechanic, the vehicle stalled three times. The vehicle would not restart and was towed to a dealer. They advised her that the tddc cylinder code stalled for the cam shaft cylinder sensor. The vehicle was repaired for the cam shaft sensor. The failure mileage was approximately 55,000.

- Efland, NC, USA

problem #13

Jul 062010

Civic 4-cyl

  • 114,000 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Honda Civic. The contact stated that the ECM in the vehicle was defective which made it difficult for the vehicle to start. The dealer stated that NHTSA recall campaign id number, 01V329000 engine and engine cooling was related to the failure; yet, his VIN was not included. The owner believed that this is a safety issue and the VIN should be included in the recall. The current and failure mileages were 114,000. Updated 11/03/10. The consumer was informed that a bulletin had been issue for that same problem he experienced regarding the PCM. However, his VIN was not included. Updated 11/04/10

- Carson , CA, USA

problem #12

Oct 012009


  • 145,000 miles
I was diving down the hwy when my car would no longer accelerate. I was pressing the gas pedal and my rpms were shooting through the roof, but my speed was declining, as cars going 70mph were shooting around me. Then I came to a halt, and then my check engine light came on. I had no warnings, it came out of nowhere. I had my car towed to the mechanic. He replaced the entire transmission and stated it had something to do with the radiator not cooling the fluids, yet my car never read as hot. $3000 later I have a new transmission, which is not made my Honda. Honda failed to provide me with any information on this and seem "shocked" when I called them.

- Dallas, GA, USA

problem #11

Apr 152010


  • 130,000 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Honda Civic. She stated that on April 15, 2010, while driving 60 mph the vehicle accelerated and lost power. She was able to drive onto the emergency lane. The dealer was contacted and informed her that the cylinder head needed to be replaced at her own expense. The manufacturer was contacted. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure was mileage 130,000 and the current mileage was 133,000.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #10

May 152004


  • 96,000 miles


The contact owns a 2001 Honda Civic. While the contact was driving approximately 70 mph the vehicle jerked with a sudden reduction in the speed. The contact was able to pull over to the side of the road. The engine was turned off and restarted after waiting for the vehicle to cool down. The failure occurred in warm weather temperatures. The vehicle was taken to the dealer and the ignition and two rallies were replaced. The identical failures occurred five years later. The contact stated that the manufacturer should be responsible the repair cost. The failure mileage was 96,000.

- Heartsville, SC, USA

problem #9

May 022009


  • 81,000 miles
I own a 2001 Honda Civic LX sedan. The car has about 81000 miles on it. On May 2nd 2009, the car just stopped in the middle of the road and the check engine light came on. I towed it to the nearest auto shop. The diagnostic test revealed the codes to be P0740 and P0730, which I am told, indicate a broken torque converter and a faulty transmission. I then took the car to Honda in mission valley, san diego. The service technician recommended replacing the transmission unit. When I enquired the reasons for this, the technician's only response was badluckż. he quoted the price for the replacement as $2600. On May 4th, I opened a case with american Honda, mainly because the car has only 81K miles on it, is not very old and I have records for all the recommended services for the car. Above all, a car just stopping in the middle of the road without any sort of warning is a major safety hazard. Given the circumstances, I am grateful that no one was injured due to the mechanical malfunction. The next day, a case manager from Honda, Mr. Sergio suarez, contacted me. We spoke for close to an hour, without being able to reach any mutually favorable resolution. While I appreciate Mr. Suarez's polite demeanor, he was ultimately indifferent about analyzing my case. Mr. Suarez did not even request to see the service records for the vehicle. It seemed to me like he had already made his conclusions before talking to me and never intended to address my concerns. Mr. Suarez, in fact, at the end of the call notified me that I am not a customer of Honda and that Honda has no obligations towards my vehicle or me.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #8

Jul 032008


  • Automatic transmission
  • 83,204 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Honda Civic. While driving 60 mph on the interstate, the check engine warning light illuminated on the instrument panel. When he depressed the accelerator pedal, the vehicle failed to maintain speed and the transmission failed. The contact was able to maneuver to the shoulder of the road until it could be towed to a repair shop. The failure mileage was 83,204 and current mileage was 83,205.updated 08/04/08. Updated 08/06/08.

- Vicksburg, MS, USA

problem #7

Oct 252005

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
I went to Honda dealer to change an air filter for my wife Honda Civic 2001. Then I found out the air cleaner case cracked. So, I went back to Honda dealer and told the services manager. The services manager knew what causes the air cleaner case to crack because on September 16, 2003, Honda issued a service bulletin 03-061. Since, Honda know what causes the air cleaner case to crack, Honda should recall all air cleaner case for model 2001 Civic to avoid injure in the near future.

- Sacramento, CA, USA

problem #6

Jul 262005

Civic 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 75,000 miles
Car engine will stop running without notice. While traveling on the road vehicle will loose acceleration even while pressing on the gas pedal. Notified by Honda service that engine needs to be replaced. Parts needed include: Cylinder head assembly, head gasket, tdc sensor, valve cover gasket, timing belt cover, cover, intake manifold gasket, rear water passage gasket, water pipe "B" O-ring, catalytic converter. Service tech stated that it was a manufacturing defect. They are only offering to pay for the catalytic converter. They should replace all items if it is a manufacturing defect. Car is not even 4 years old.

- Aiea, HI, USA

problem #5

Nov 012004


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
The vehicle gas gauge fluctuated between half a tank and a fourth of a tank within short periods of time and did not really move during long distance trips. The front shock made noises, the front spring was weak, there was a noise coming from the power steering pump, and a ticking noise in the engine.

- Baytown, TX, USA

problem #4

Nov 152002


  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,000 miles
A/C doesn't get cold, can't get Honda to fix as been this way since new. Brakes went bad with about 15000 miles on them. Were bad before that, still does not stop right, and has a vibraton when stopping transmission has a thumping like noise some times while idling. Had to replace strut on passanager side, couldn't get Honda to pay for all of it. I think one on driver side is bad also. Service manager told me this was a problem with the Honda Civic

- Pedro, OH, USA

problem #3

Dec 312003

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 47,125 miles
Vehicle was stuck in full throttle while driving on the highway. When this occurred the brake pedal was depressed but failed to stop or slow the vehicle down. As a result, consumer hit three motorists but vehicle continued to accelerate. The emergency brake was engaged and vehicle was put in park gear to stop. The problem was due to a pebble entering the air intake valve.

- Fort Worth, TX, USA

problem #2

Jul 212001

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
In requesting a quote for car insurance, a link was provided to the NHTSA website for those wishing to see if their vehicle has/had been recalled. For the heck of it, I decided to try it. To my shock, I discovered there have been 5 recalls associated with the 2001 Honda Civic since 2001(re: Seat belts; fuel system/fuel pump; and engine & engine cooling). It is now 2003, and I have never received one notification. The system did not specify if these recalls are related to the ex model, which is what I have. However, the thought that the recalls are related to my vehicle has me seriously concerned and needless to say very frustrated at the thought that I would not be contacte by Honda.

- Lakewood, CA, USA

problem #1

Jun 022003


  • miles
Consumer stated that while driving and without warning the smoke started to come from the steering wheel. Dealer notified.

- Antioch, CA, USA

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