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:
46 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
36 / 0
Average Mileage:
34,175 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 seat belts / air bags problems

seat belts / air bags problem

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2001 Honda Civic Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #60

Aug 032011

Civic 4-cyl

  • 84,814 miles


SRS light on my 2001 Honda Civic is on and the problem, according to the dealer is a code 15-3 for opds unit failure. With this light on the air bags in my car will not function in a crash. Honda had extended the coverage for this repair for 10 years or 150,000 miles. The problem is that I missed the cut off for a covered repair by 11 months. The car currently has less than 85,000 miles on it. The dealership, valley Honda of monroville pa, wants to charge 325 dollars for the repair that I feel should be covered by the car company because I believe the problem is in their equipment.

- Pittsburgh, PA, USA

problem #59

Mar 242011

Civic 4-cyl

  • miles
My 2001 Honda Civic was part of a recall due to a problem with the SRS. I went to the dealership and I was told that my car was also under recall due to a problem with the switch for the lights. The problem was with the low-beams. I made an appointment for both to be fixed. When I brought the car in, I was told that it was not part of the recall for the lightswitch, although the recall contained the make and model year of my car. I am disappointed that this wasn't fixed as part of the recall because I have been experiencing problems with the switch, going so far as to purchase two sets of headlights in the two years I have owned the car, and I don't understand why if it occurred in other cars made the same year as mine, why wouldn't Honda fix it knowing it has been a problem. My VIN apparently was a few numbers off. I would think that if I'm having the same problem, Honda would fix my switch even though it isn't within the recalled VIN range. My second complaint is that after having replaced the recalled part, the SRS indicator light is still on. This dealership allowed me to drive away in my unsafe car, which will not pass inspection due to the safety issue. The final issue is that I was promised the car at 1 O'clock, and I didn't get a call that it was finished until almost 2 O'clock, and at that time I had to scramble to find someone at the very last minute to pick up my child from school. I will own this car in another six months, and I was sincerely hoping to trade it in for a newer model Honda. I am not sure I'll do that now.

- Saugus, MA, USA

problem #58

Nov 212010


  • miles
My mother is a victim of sudden acceleration incident from a Honda Civic 2001. She was driving the vehicle on a small street and had placed it in park. Then, she placed the gear back into drive and before tapping the gas pedal the car surged forward in high acceleration and went out of control. She applied the brakes a few times but it failed to stop the car. The steering was also out of control and the car continued to accelerate about 30-40 mph for an entire block and finally, crashed into a tree totaling the vehicle. She was taken away by ambulance. As a result of the crash, she suffered from a broken ankle and heel, deep gash to the knee, severe chest pain (from airbag) and heart contusion. She spent over a week in the hospital and is still in the process of recovering.

- Toronto, 00, USA

problem #57

Jan 012008


  • 100,000 miles


My horn stopped working and my SRS light came on about a year and a half ago. The dealer originally told me it had to do with the wiring... costing me $300 which I could not afford to repair. I took the car in for the air bag recall and now they are saying the SRS light is on because of a defect in the seat belt buckle ($200)- but why would that make my horn stop working? there are a lot of complaints and this needs to be recalled as this is incredibly unsafe and obviously widespread!!! Honda also needs to recall the transmission problems. I had fought them and they paid for half of the repair costs when my transmission dangerously and quickly went out in the middle of traffic during rush hour about three years ago. These are major safety issues!! unfortunately I cannot afford the repairs but I am scared to drive the car with the SRS light on. I bought this car because of the supposed reliability and cheap maintenance. It is ridiculous that Honda is not taking car of the SRS light problem and transmission problem!!!

- Thousand Oaks, CA, USA

problem #56

Jul 142009


  • 107,000 miles
I am writing to inform you of an airbag malfunction that occurred in my 2001 Honda Civic on July 14, 2009. I was injured in the accident as a direct result of the airbag failure. I was driving in rush hour traffic on July 14, 2009. Going approximately 40 mph, I rear-ended a vehicle that was stopped for a light. The front of my Honda smashed in, the windshield was smashed, and the front end and compartment compressed to the point that, despite the fact that I was wearing my seatbelt, the steering wheel jammed into my chest with great force. The passenger side airbag inflated, but the driver's side airbag did not. My car was totaled and not repairable. I was taken to the hospital by ambulance with severe chest contusions, and was out of work for 2 weeks in a great deal of pain. For months, I suffered with large hematomas on my breasts, severe bruising, and intense pain. To this day, my breasts are deformed and lumpy from months of hematomas, and my understanding is that I will have issues with this for many years, if not forever. I have photographs of both my injuries and the vehicle.

- Brooklyn, NY, USA

problem #55

Jun 212010


  • 76,300 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Honda Civic. The contact attempted to brake from unknown speeds but to no avail. The brakes would not engage and the vehicle proceeded through the traffic stop, crashing into the side of another vehicle. The air bags did not deploy. The vehicle was towed to the contacts residence. The vehicle was not repaired however, the air bags were previously serviced under NHTSA campaign id number: 09V259000 (air bags). The failure and current mileages were 76,300.

- San Fransico, CA, USA

problem #54

Oct 092009


  • 113,009 miles


The contact owns a 2001 Honda Civic LX. The contact stated she received notification of NHTSA campaign id number: 09V259000 (air bags: Frontal: Driver side inflator module) and had repairs performed on the vehicle at her local dealer. The frontal air bag inflator module was replaced however, the air bag warning sensor light was illuminated on the dashboard. The vehicle was taken back to the dealer and the contact was advised that a diagnostic would have to be performed on the vehicle to determine the cause of failure, at the owner's expense. The current mileage was 115,946 and the approximate failure mileage was 113,009.

- Westlake, OH, USA

problem #53

Mar 032010


  • 59,000 miles
My daughter was involved in a car accident on 3/3/10. Coming off of a stop sign and entering an intersection heading North, she failed to yield to an SUV heading East. She T-boned that car which did extensive damage to the entire front of her vehicle (vehicle declared totaled). My concern is that the airbag did not deploy. If you saw the picture of the damage, it certainly should have.

- Spring, TX, USA

problem #52

Jul 182009


  • 93,000 miles
SRS light remains on possibly to the defective seat belt sensor as others have complained about. Presently I need to replace front struts $800 - normal wear and tear for a car with 95000 miles on it. I hate the new Honda Civic - I have no idea what they were thinking when they designed it so I decided to keep mine and have the normal stuff fixed. But - this is something that I am not the only one complaining about. Let's get the SRS light covered under a recall.

- Terre Haute, IN, USA

problem #51

Sep 292009


  • 112,300 miles
American Honda was required to notify car owners of a recall for driver's airbags to affected Civic owners. I am one of those owners and never received notification. When seeing a notice for a recall from another manufacturer on the news, I logged into my Honda owner link account - one which I have been a registered user for more than 2 years, and which contains my correct mailing address (the same as when I purchased the car) - and was able to see that my car is indeed in the scope of recalled vehicles. Not only did I not receive my recall notice in the mail, the copy of the letter in my Honda owner link is a pdf document that has security options that will not allow me to copy any portion of the letter to a word document or print the letter at home so I can take it to my local dealership. In addition, I notice from documents related to the recall on this website that Honda notified NHTSA that approx 440,000 vehicles may be affected, but the copy of the service bulletin shown here tells dealers that only 7,000 vehicles may be expected. I am a dedicated Honda owner, but it seems that Honda is not fulfilling their obligations to their customers and the government - and using the pdf security settings to prevent those of us careful enough to check for ourselves from printing a copy of the letter.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #50

Sep 192009


  • miles


I was driving through an intersection when I was struck by a vehicle. I was hit on the front driver's side. My car spun and our cars collided a second time, damaging my driver's rear side. My passenger airbag deployed however my driver's side airbag did not. I hit what I think was my steering wheel and broke my cheekbone.

- Tucson, AZ, USA

problem #49

Jun 202005


  • 286,000 miles
Sirs, recently the air bag warning indicator on the instrument panel, fails to go off indicating a problem with the safety air bag system.there is no routine maintenance recommended in my owners manual for this part, and since I read about recalls for this model car (Honda Civic 4 door 2001) I did not take it to the repair shop or dealer to examine. Through this website, I checked the VIN's of the vehicles affected and my vehicle is not on that list of numbers. I believe that this is a manufacturing defect, it would probably be very costly to have it repaired.I have no idea how many complaints there are about this problem, and if I should just go ahead and have it looked at and eat the costs, or wait a little to see what you advise (if you do that at all). Thank you in advance, peter P

- Greenwood Lake, NY, USA

problem #48

Jul 012009


  • 70,152 miles
The SRS light in my 2001 Honda Civic has been on for a month, which means my airbags will not deploy properly. Honda refuses to cover the cost of this safety issue.

- Plano, TX, USA

problem #47

Oct 012006


  • 65,000 miles
The SRS indicator light came on and has been on for 2 years. I was T-boned on the passenger side by the gas tank, and the airbags did not deploy. I had taken the car to the dealer numerous times for maintenance & was never informed of this possibility due to the indicator light being on. Had I known, it would have been fixed or inspected. Now the dealer says it is not under warranty & at 100 hr. I do not want to have to hunt & peck to find the source of this electrical malfunction. Honda should extend the warranty to include electrical wiring & safety system components on 2001 models, based on 100's of other complaints by other Civic owners. Also, the right window motor is burned out (since 2007), it almost stalls when in reverse (since 2005), have noticed a lag in acceleration in lower gears (60K), also abrupt downshifting (sometimes) & it makes an odd humming seeming to come from rear of vehicle when accelerating (this last week). Mileage is 87K, way too soon for a Honda to give out.

- Sierra Vista, AZ, USA

problem #46

Jun 222008


  • 85,000 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Honda Civic. While driving 35 mph, the front end of the vehicle was crashed. The driver side air bag deployed, but it also caused the entire steering wheel to explode. All the plastic metal from the steering wheel spread throughout the vehicle. The driver was injured due to the air bag explosion, along with two other occupants. A police report was filed. The failure mileage was 85,000.

- Clovis, CA, USA

problem #45

Aug 062008


  • miles
The contact owns a 2001 Honda Civic. While driving 50 mph, the contact rear ended another vehicle. None of the air bags deployed. The contact received head and chest trauma, and is complaining of neck and back pain. He has seen a doctor for his injuries. The vehicle was destroyed and a police report was filed. The contact has pictures. The current and failure mileages were unknown.

- Buillerica, MA, USA

problem #44

Jul 262008


  • 97,500 miles
Driving 2001 Honda Civic ex at approximately 45 mph, crashed head-on into side of SUV making illegal left turn. There was one passenger in front passenger's seat. Neither driver or passenger side airbags deployed. Both driver and passenger sustained seat belt bruises across chest. Car appears to be totaled (prior to official claims adjustment).

- Charlotte, NC, USA

problem #43

Jan 292007


  • 25,000 miles
A car cut me off on freeway-I swerved to avoid hitting him. My car hit center freeway divider and rolled over 3-4 times before coming to a rest. The airbags did not deploy. Car is completely destroyed.

- Fremont, CA, USA

problem #42

Oct 012006

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles
Our 2001 Honda Civic ex was involved in an accident. A pickup truck turned in front of our vehicle and our front-end hit his side. The air bag(s) did not deploy nor did the seat belt work properly. The driver's head in the Honda hit the windshield and the driver's neck hit the steering wheel.

- Vienna, VA, USA

problem #41

Apr 232006

Civic 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 44,680 miles
I was driving my 2001 Honda Civic when a car ran a red light and drove into my driver side door. My complaint is that even though it was a side impact both of my front air bags went off, the problem was my car was still moving forward and I could not see where I was going and was very lucky to miss a light pole, a telephone pole, a electric grid box and several small trees all of which were in front of me. Like I said I was very lucky to miss all of those objects but if I had hit one I would not have had the air bags to protect me because they had already deployed. I have pictures of the car from after the accident and it clearly shows that there was not a single scratch on the front bumper that could have caused the deployment of the air bags. I am currently car shopping to replace the totaled vehicle and would love to purchase another Honda but I have doubts of the safety of their air bag deployment system.

- Succasunna, NJ, USA

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