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:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
85,811 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 transmission problems

transmission problem

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2002 Honda Civic Owner Comments (Page 3 of 6)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #62

Jul 242009


  • 72,000 miles


1. I purchased this car used, and the problem was hidden from me. 2. problem occurs everyday, the transmission slips about 1500 rpms when cold. A. seatbelts are hard to click into mechanism B. interior lights do not come on when drivers door is opened, but does when passenger door is open.. 3. nothing has been done yet, I have taken this car to many shops trying to diagnose the problem, but I cannot figure it out.

- Zeeland, MI, USA

problem #61

Jan 022010


  • 88,000 miles
The transmission in my 2002 Honda Civic started slipping and failed at 88,000 miles. I took it to a transmission mechanic and he said the transmission needed rebuilt. There were pieces of burned material stuck to the dipstick. He said it was the third 2001-2002 Civic transmission he fixed this week and they can fail early. Paid to have the transmission rebuilt for $2,500.

- Alton, IL, USA

problem #60

Dec 052009


  • 87,900 miles
Complete transmission failure while driving my car. No warnings prior to failure. When exiting freeway the engine revved but the car would not go into gear. Concern is that this unexpected failure could cause an accident. All maintenance current on the car. 87,900. Miles many complaints online for this same issue.

- Scottsdale, AZ, USA

problem #59

Nov 192009


  • 45,000 miles


I know this is not something listed as a "safety" hazard, but just because a car doesn't explode, ignite, or shatter doesn't mean a defect cannot lead to safety hazards (I.e., being stranded on highways, in traffic, or on rural backroads). I just purchased a used 2002 Honda Civic with just over 43,000 miles. I did notice when shifting gears, there was a tinny, buzzing sound. I reported it to the dealership (purchased from a Toyota dealership), and scheduled an appointment with them to look at it. Days before that appointment, I was heading up a steep and narrow gravel road to work, and the gears stopped engaging altogether. I had to put the car in neutral and back down the hill, hopeful that a car would not come around the blind corner I was backing toward. I had to call my boss to come and rescue me, and a tow truck to take the car back to the dealership. In the research I've done since, it appears Honda will not issue a recall because it's not a "safety" concern. And perhaps the many others who have experienced this same issue have been fortunate, but I'd say it's a matter of time before this happens to someone on a busy highway, and they're not so fortunate. Any consideration you could give this case would be appreciated, as I know I'm not the only person to have filed a complaint against Honda for faulty transmissions on the 02 Civic model. I would supply a VIN number but I am away from paperwork, and my car is in the shop (and has been for about two weeks now!).

- Tualatin, OR, USA

problem #58

Nov 152009


  • 100,500 miles
Transmission failure without warning.

- Fort Campbell, KY, USA

problem #57

Oct 012009


  • 110,000 miles
2002 Honda Civic had transmission failure in the middle of a heavy traffic main street almost causing and accident with my grandchild in the car, this is an on going problem with 2002 Civic and are many complains to Honda and nothing is done about it.

- Orlando, FL, USA

problem #56

Sep 042009


  • 95,000 miles


I have a 2002 Honda Civic LX with 95,000 miles on it. The transmission failed on it last Friday. I have been doing some research and this, and it seems to be a common problem with the make and year of car. I had my car towed to a local Honda dealership and was told that it's going to cost me $3,300 + tax for the repairs. I just want to add my name to the list of people that feel they have been ripped off by a manufacturer with a faulty product.

- Lower Burrell, PA, USA

problem #55

Aug 182009


  • 101,000 miles
Just driving down the highway transmission slipped a little then it was ok, got down the highway, exit the highway engine light came on, transmission failed. Had to coast around a corner. Nothing before to let me know the transmission was failing until then. Could have failed while driving down the highway and someone could have reared ended me while doing 70 mph. I have read other complaints about this particular problem, with transmission failure on the Honda Civic 2002.

- Deltona, FL, USA

problem #54

Jun 162009


  • 146,786 miles
My daughter was driving her 2002 Honda Civic and the transmission basically quit working to where the vehicle could not go forward. This occurred on a very busy highway and she was barely able to cross lanes of traffic and come to a stop on the shoulder. Upon searching the internet, this is an extremely common problem for the 2001/2002 Honda Civics where the transmission quits working when it is warmed up. I am just amazed that this hasn't caught the attention of anyone as being a safety issue. In my daughter's situation, there was a very high likelihood that she could have been stranded in one of the lanes of the highway and an inattentive driver could have rear-ended her vehicle causing life-threatening injuries. I realize that having an accident occur due to this would gain more attention, but I am thankful that was not the case in my daughter's situation. I understand that a transmission is a mechanical piece of hardware and over time it will fail, but in this situation there were no warning signs. Based upon comments posted on the internet in reference to this topic, this is a common thing. The root cause points to faulty design/workmanship and someone needs to check into it. Thank you for your time.

- Platte City, MO, USA

problem #53

Feb 122003

Civic 6-cyl

  • 30,000 miles
2002 Honda Civic LX 1.7L V6 has several transmission problems even after the dealer has fixed them under warranty. People are getting stranded late at night with children etc...this is dangerous. People has often taken it upon themselves to fix these vehicles so even thought Honda has a high report of transmission failure it's even higher due to the above reason, they just do not know about the others. With the complaints they do have on file they should already there is an issue but they are not identifying with it. Getting stranded with this kind of problem could be fatal due to being stranded at night or even in traffic. Then who would be the one!!!!

- College Park, GA, USA

problem #52

May 152009


  • 130,000 miles


My 2002 Honda Civic ex sedan with 130K miles on it started to exhibit a slight buzzing noise as well as a tendency to slip gears. Then one night the transmission completely failed and would not shift into any gear. Normally I would not think this to be an issue but after researching online, I found that there is an unusually high number of transmission failures in 2001 and 2002 Honda Civics. There is obviously a defect in the manufacturing of the transmission for this vehicle and is obviously a safety problem as it leads to complete loss of power to the drive wheels.

- Grayslake, IL, USA

problem #51

May 052009


  • 98,286 miles
2002 Honda Civic complete auto transmission failure in middle of freeway during 5 O'clock commuter traffic. A young woman was stranded and at mercy of aggravated freeway travelers, could have been victim of rage driver, or could have been involved in major automobile crash.

- Lafayette, LA, USA

problem #50

Mar 172009


  • 128,000 miles
My transmission failed in my 2002 Honda Civic while driving. Lost all gears and it would not move.

- Centreville, VA, USA

problem #49

Mar 112009


  • miles
I have a 2002 Honda Civic ex auto trans. I notice the slipping of the transmission and was wondering if this was a recall...the car currently has 130,000 on it, and it probably has been doing this since about 60K miles. The car is flawless besides that, never a lick of trouble, just put tires and brakes and oil into it. But I'm starting to wonder about this "torque converter" issue, that many others have reported. It seems like the dealer knows about the problem but says nothing is wrong till you need a 3,000$ transmission. This is by far the best car I have owned ever! are these tranny problems in the LX? the ex and LX have different engines, and transmissions as sister drove a 02 ex as well, and never had any problems with it either, but hers too, has this slipping when gears its an apparent problem, that Honda doesn't want to acknowledge. Maybe the people having problems were peeling out, and driving it too rough...this isn't a truck, its not a car made to beat on, so if you want to beat a car, go buy a Hummer!

- Parma, OH, USA

problem #48

Oct 012008


  • miles
Transmission revs high during shifting and you have to let off the gas in order for it to go into gear and car wont always go into gear. Took it to a repair shop and they said nothing was wrong, it was just a slow shift. It seems to happen more when its cold outside.

- Centreville, VA, USA

problem #47

Mar 092009


  • 83,000 miles
Transmission failure on way to work.

- Palm Bay, FL, USA

problem #46

Mar 032009


  • 80,296 miles
My transmission blew on my 2002 Honda Civic. It only has 80K miles. I went to step on the gas when it stayed at 0 mph, while the rpms went up. I was stuck in the middle of a busy intersection and I had to be pushed to the side of the road, I almost got hit by 2 cars. I read on a forum to make a complaint to this website. My warranty ran out 6 months ago and I still have a year and a half to pay on the car. I don't have the money to fix it so I contacted America Honda for some good will assistance. I had my car towed to a Honda dealership like they requested, and I am awaiting to hear back.

- Worcester, MA, USA

problem #45

Feb 252009


  • 112,300 miles
The transmission in my 2002 Honda Civic LX sedan went out at 112,300 miles on freeway with no warning.

- Sacramento, CA, USA

problem #44

Feb 192009


  • 88,000 miles
2002 Honda Civic is the car I own, and from reading other reports I'm not the only one lately to have this issue. The transmission was not showing any problems no problems at all until this morning, suddenly starting to slip on the way to work. Upon leaving earlier today my car wasn't going into gear at all, transmission is shot! was wondering if there is a product recall in the works for this...thank you very much for your time and consideration.

- Hilliard, OH, USA

problem #43

Dec 302008


  • 134,000 miles
Transmission failure because of faulty design by manufacturer. Happen crossing busy intersection. Could have caused major accident.

- Waterloo, 00, USA

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