Notes: Yes, the Honda Civic receives a lot of complaints because so many were sold. And sure, car parts only last so long and things eventually break. But it's never good to see this many transmission complaints, especially when the average mileage at failure is just north of 100,000 miles.

Especially when you consider that it's predecessor also has a nasty history with transmission complaints.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
89,159 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.

2002 Honda Civic miscellaneous problems

miscellaneous problem

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2002 Honda Civic Owner Comments

problem #11

Dec 212016


  • 128,000 miles


Cuts off when stopped idling, but will crank back

- Denton, NC, USA

problem #10

Dec 202015


  • 119,000 miles
Transmission failure

- Oak Park, IL, USA

problem #9

Mar 102015


  • 230,000 miles
The acceleration is sticking and the speed will drop to 0 if climbing up a hill using cruise control.

- Tulsa, OK, USA

problem #8

Nov 182014

Civic 4-cyl

  • 170,000 miles


My daughter (18 yrs. Of age) recently purchased a 2002 Honda Civic and was involved in an automobile accident. In this accident the unfortunate thing was her air bag did not deploy and her chest hit the steering wheel. She was taken by ambulance to a local hospital. X-rays were done and she was just bruised and no broken bones. She may have not sustained any injuries if the air bag would have deployed. I know Honda has had law suits filed against them because of air bags deploying and causing injury, but in her case it caused injury that maybe could have been avoided if it had deployed. Thanks

- Louisville, KY, USA

problem #7

Jun 142012

Civic 4-cyl

  • 78,000 miles
In June 2012 I experienced on my 2002 Honda Civic an odd behavior, ac stopped working (light would be on but no cold air), power locks also failed, door chime/key left in ignition switchreminder stopped working at the same time, remote entry via key fob was somehow disabled and the most important and somehow terrifying experience is that the windshield washer and wipers do not work properly, I was splashed some muddy water on the windshield and activated the windshield washer/wiper to clear the muddy water; the wipers failed and my vision was completely blurred so I had to look out the drivers window and safely stop. I'm aware of two recall notices for my vehicle model year, one of them involving the low beam lights (I experienced that as well and thought both bulbs, low beams had gone out at the same time) this particular recall is for the defective and/or low quality of the electrical contacts/circuitry of the headlight switch. For a couple of weeks the electrical issue was gone but came back and has stayed, same electrical issues that I think might have something to do with low quality materials (as the ones used on the headlight switch recall notice) at the fuse panel inside the cabin; I'm no expert but my family's safety and the safety of the people on the road is my concern, what if the materials used on this unit (fuse panel/multiplex connector?) overheat and start a fire in the cabin or what I've experienced, a sudden splash on the windshield that prompts a quick response to stop due to null vision? I've searched online and seems the culprit of the electrical issues all at once is a poorly designed/constructed fuse panel. I should feel safe when driving not "taking a risk" hoping nothing bad happens.

- San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #6

Jun 122013

Civic 4-cyl

  • 108,000 miles
Entered only one date but has occurred at least 5 times over the last 6 years and had been so rare didn't believe it had happened. Just so happened it has occurred now 3 times in 6 week span and twice in one day. Motor revs up on it's on when sitting with foot on brake idling, most times I have stopped and getting ready to put in park and shut ignition off. I see other models are being recalled as of June 20, 2013 but no mention of my make/model.

- Kansas City, KS, USA

problem #5

Oct 282010


  • 107,000 miles


Driving on freeway at approx. 50 mph and notice car accelerating on it's own. Attempt to pull over but notice not able to stop. Pushing down on brake all the way and car still going approx. 50 mph. Call 911 and was told to pull emergency brake. Get into shoulder lane and pull brake gradually as instructed. After doing so, car slows to approx. 10 mph. At this point shoulder lane turns into downhill off-ramp and car gains speed to approx. 15 mph. Traffic signal with red light and stopped cars directly in front of me so make decision to turn car into a pole on sidewalk. This ultimately stops car from moving. However, car RPM gauge still revving between 2.5 and 3.5 until car is turned off. File claim with my insurance, independent investigator checks car and finds that everything is in working condition and cannot find anything wrong with car to have caused the sudden unintended acceleration and inability to stop while utilizing brake pedal.

- La Verne, CA, USA

problem #4

May 152003


  • Manual transmission
  • 15,000 miles
The car was purchased new on April 20, 2002. Since the very first day several problems were discovered which Honda has been unable to resolve. One ongoing problem is a vibration at 55 mph in the steering wheel, which Honda has attributed to a wheel balance problem and tire problem. The car has been serviced 14 times by Honda and Firestone (tire manufacturer) and merchant tire (balance). Honda tried to balance the wheels and after several failed attempts told me it was a problem with faulty tires (oem). Honda told me they could do nothing further about the problem and told me I had to take care of the problem on my own with the tire manufacturer despite the fact that the car was obviously still under Honda warranty. None of the balancing solved the problem and Honda told me it must be defective (original) tires. Firestone them replaced 3 tires under warranty and the problem still persisted. They attempted to balance the wheels 2 more times. I went back to Honda and they balanced the wheels again with no success and they would not investigate the problem further. There are several other problems. One is a problem with hissing and static in the radio reception when the rear window defogger is on (since new). Honda replaced the radio and defogger switch but the problem is still there. Another problem is a visibility problem in the rear window (since new). A hazy sticky film develops on the rear window. It is very difficult to clean with household glass cleaner. Another problem is that the original Honda floor mat wore right through when the car was not even a year old. I had to purchase a whole set for about $90. The drivers seat upholstery also began to wear prematurely. Another problem that developed over the past year is a damp moldy musty odor coming from the air conditioner/heater vents. The odor is sometimes strong and when I turn on the ac or heater it makes me cough and feel ill. I am very disappointed in the quality of this vehicle.

- Alexandria, VA, USA

problem #3

Jun 032003

Civic 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 13,000 miles
Multiple manufacturing defects in a car which was purchased new and about which Honda of America does not seem concerned.

- Sterling, VA, USA

problem #2

Sep 172003

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 12,750 miles
Fuel gauge shows "empty" when there are 3+ gallons in the tank

- Nashville, TN, USA

problem #1

Jan 302002


  • miles
While driving at 30 mph, battery and oil light illuminated. Then, engine died. Another driver almost rear ended consumer. Dealer has been contacted.

- Beaumont, TX, USA

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