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.


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
103,000 miles
Total Complaints:
60 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. Replace transmission (32 reports)
  2. not sure (21 reports)
  3. warranty must be increase by honda from 100000 to 160000 (5 reports)
  4. purchase extended warranty (1 reports)
  5. solenoid was sticking. cleaned solenoid and works great now (1 reports)
2002 Honda Civic transmission problems

transmission problem

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2002 Honda Civic Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #60

May 302019

Civic EX 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 242,323 miles


So I replaced my torque converter solenoid and dual shift solenoid here recently. My car has been running normal until the other day. I came to a stop and then when I was going to go all my car did was rev up really high and didn't want to go but 10mph. Then after I drove a little bit I was able to get to 40mph but the car didn't seem to shift. I have spent 700 replacing the transmission already and now idk if I'm going to have to do it again or not. It is automatic and if anyone has any ideas what could be wrong please feel free to help me with ideas. I've spent more money trying to fix this car than I have been able to drive it.

- uniquemoments86, Lancaster, US

problem #59

May 012016

Civic LX 1.7L V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 137,000 miles

Only had 138,000 miles on the car and the transmission is slipping. It makes so much noise while climbing uphill. The RPM goes up even before the car catches speed. Its just awful that driving such a good car like Honda which should be so reliable has failed miserably.

- Shishir P., Fords, NJ, US

problem #58

Feb 282016

Civic EX 1.7L L4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 126,822 miles

Just purchased the day before, with no warranty. It did not display this problem during the several mile test drive on and off highway.

- sydman, Grandville, MI, US

problem #57

Oct 102013

Civic LX 1.7L V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 103,860 miles


Car will not switch into a gear higher than second. Transmission slips. Confused on what to do since a new transmission will cost too much to replace. Plus I dont think the whole transmission needs replacement just some parts like the torque converter and mechanics want to replace the whole thing for the ca$h!. And what to say that the next part or transmissions wont fail. It's a big headache. Honda should fix the problems based on these facts. Mileage should have nothing to do with it when they are putting out crappy parts.

- shank, Sarasota, FL, US

problem #56

Jun 102015

Civic DX 1.6L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles

i bought the car about 6 months ago and it only had 38000 miles on it. I thought it would last me 200000 miles because its a honda, right? It was withing the first 3000 miles that i noticed some slipping in the transmission and once in awhile a harsh clunk. It is still running at this point but all these problems with the transmissions worry me.....

- Dan S., St. Benedict, PA, US

problem #55

Apr 122015


  • Automatic transmission
  • 131,000 miles

Had transmission rebuilt 2.5 years ago after complete failure. This past weekend, I felt it slipping again when shifting gears, check engine light came on, took it to a shop who said it's definitely a problem with the transmission. Haven't had it fixed yet because I'm still weighing my options. Ready to get rid of this car and find something RELIABLE.

- Ellie C., Chapel Hill, NC, US

problem #54

Mar 022015

Civic EX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 43,000 miles


2002 Civic..original owner...three times in the past week my transmission has slipped (engine revving) with no engagement. Same story as so many others here. This vehicle is one owner car with only 43,000 miles....very well-cared for. Car goes in tomorrow to have the air bags replaced. Intend to have them check the tranny to see what is happening for certain.

Called Honda of America...explained history of transmission problems to two people...called just to see what their responses are to the problems documented online and with a terrible supervisor who told me I needed to accept responsibility for my cars repairs. I told him it is an obvious design flaw and asked about goodwill repair assistance...he told me it would be denied because of the age of the car.

I promptly told him I will never buy another Honda because of the attitude he gave me. Very curious to see what the dealer has to say tomorrow.

- sjp1, Columbus, OH, US

problem #53

Sep 012014

Civic EX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 76,000 miles

I bought this car new in 2002. It wasn't long before the transmission started to go. Driving at freeway speeds is no problem, but when the car has to accelerate from a standstill, the transmission slips and the car jerks forward. I brought it to the dealer early on, and they said they didn't experience the problem when they test drove it.

I lived with this for years, but now it's getting worse. I just brought it in to a mechanic for another problem (engine started nearly overheated idling in traffic), and I asked them to look at the transmission problem and they said the transmission is getting ready to go. So it's time to buy another car. It's not worth spending $2,000 on a transmission for a 12 year old car that has a crappy 4-cylinder engine that doesn't like driving up hills.

By the way, the mechanic could find no leaks or any other problem that would account for the engine heating problem. I have had so many problems with this car, including recalls, that if I had to recount them separately, I would be posting all day. Here are a few:

Recall: Airbag could start firing shrapnel into driver if deployed. Recall: Front seat was loose, needed to be re-bolted. Door actuators broke, costly replacement to use my door remote.

All in all, I wish I had never bought this vehicle.

- Marc L., Portola Hills, CA, US

problem #52

Jun 152014

Civic LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 115,000 miles

Transmission slipping. Car undriveable.


- Luz Elena R., Claremont, CA, US

problem #51

Mar 122014


  • Manual transmission
  • 150,000 miles

I went into specific detail regarding this shifting problem when I was having the car checked out to see whether it needed a new clutch. The Service Manager ASSURED me (as well as the actual Service Technician that was to work on the car) that they would fix this problem when they replaced the clutch and the added on another $1800 to replace some valves. They didn't fix the problem and are now trying to say that maybe I need a new or rebuilt transmission. It appears from all of the online complaints that they KNEW there were transmission problems with this model year and yet said nothing about it. Had they, I would not have bothered spending another dime on the car. In addition, since they "repaired" my car, I now have another problem with brief power loss when shifting that was never there until they worked on the car.

They are refusing to fix the problem because it is intermittent and has not yet occurred while they have had it - yet they KNEW about transmission problems with this model.

- Dana C., Raleigh, NC, US

problem #50

Jan 092013

Civic LX 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 105,200 miles


I was driving home on highway and suddenly car started slowing down. I was pushing gas pedal, engine was spinning but car started to slow down. It was very scary but luckily I was able to pull on side on highway without any collision. I stop and started car again. Car did not move in drive but started moving in lower gears. I took local road to reach home. Next day decided to take it to Honda dealer and on the way got engine light came on. I was able to reach driving in lower gear. Dealer told me it is code P0730 and needs new transmission with $3500.00 cost. This is definitely recall issue and Honda has to address it. I was big fan of Honda Bot not anymore. My other car is also 2007 Honda pilot.

I will appreciate if somebody can guide me on how to deal with Honda now. My car was very well maintained and I am the original owner. I just put new tires and struts on it. Now, I am feeling very sick with the whole thing. I don't want to buy new car definitely don't want pay 3500 to repair it.

- Dhaval J., Bothell, WA, US

problem #49

Oct 032012

Civic EX 2.3L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 194,000 miles

Like many of you, I thought buying a Honda was a no brainer. I have only bought Chevy trucks in the past with great success, but I wanted a small 4 cylinder car to use back in forth to work. My wife had a Toyota Camry several years ago and we must of had a lemon (our luck) becuase it had constant issue that ended in the camshaft breaking so I "gave" it away to a mechanic friend. No more Toyota's for me, that one left a bad taste.

So now about the Honda, what a nice little spry car. I loved the look on the EX coupe with wing and sunroof so I took a shot at buying my first Honda. Why oh why didn't I do my homework on what year NOT to buy. The 2002 is riddled with transmission complaints that I discovered after having my own issue.

The car one morning started "flaring" between shifting. I never knew what that word meant until I had to research the issue with this car. I panicked and thought maybe it was a low fluid level. I checked and the dipstick was almost falling out due to the rubber boot being worn out. The level was good, so I went and bought the "mandatory" Honda fluid. You know the type right, buy our fluid or your transmission will fail...yeah that fluid. So I changed fluids 3 times like all the online sites suggested and bought a new dipstick. No help at all, problem is just getting worst.

I called around to several shops and the price starts at $1500 and goes up from there. Well I just bought the car used for $4000 so that was really depressing. I called Honda in hopes that the history of this transmission may help in getting some relief. Their price was over $5000 including labor....WOW. Though the guy was super nice and told me that this transmission had a history of failure due to sub-par parts in original transmission. He stated that Honda had increased the warranty due to that issue but that my car had too many miles to qualify...grrrrrr. I wonder if the prior owner(s) ever had the transmission worked on.

So my dilema is list the car with the issues for sale on Craigslist and use what little money I can get from that to put towards another car, or salvage this one??? This may be my last Honda if I don't get this fixed

I believe.

- coachcisco, Goose Creek, SC, US

problem #48

Dec 122012


  • Automatic transmission
  • 98,177 miles

I am the owner of a 2002 Honda civic... about two weeks ago I noticed my transmission slip between gears followed by a loud clunk, the vehicle revs for about 5 seconds and then finally jerks forward! I thought maybe it had to do with the cold weather since I it only occurred when it was cold! I took it to the Honda dealership, they did a transmission drain and fill and said that they didn't notice anything wrong with the vehicle! One week later...same thing! I bought this vehicle because of reliability, Honda needs to recall this vehicle. But why haven't they you might ask? Because this is clearly an expensive repair to fix on the high volume of vehicles that are affected by this issue. I couldn't believe my eyes when I researched the common problems with this year of civic and saw ALL OF THESE COMPLAINTS... i guess im not the only one. On top of that, my suspension would have clunking sounds all the time, brought into the shop maybe once every 3 months for something else that needed replacement. I had a friend who owned an identical civic to mine, it was totaled before she experienced transmission issues, but she had to replace pretty much the entire suspension too!

- Meg M., Edmonton, AB, Canada

problem #47

Feb 112010

Civic LX 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 78,530 miles

in 2010, i was on my way to work when all of a sudden my car wouldn't move and I'm pushing down on the gas pedal, the only thing that was moving was the acceleration gauge....i called my dad and told him what had happened, so he took it to a mechanic and told him that i need a new gearbox/transmission, so i got it fixed and it came out of my pocket... two years later it started doing the same thing again, the car jerks when switching gears from 3 to 4, and shifts when switching from 4 to 5... luckily i near my house when this occurred and then the check engine light turned on... frustrating.

- Albert P., Mission Hills, CA, US

problem #46

Apr 012009


  • Automatic transmission
  • 98,000 miles

Honda's are suppose to last! After getting a transmission rebuilt I am still experiencing problems...this car is so unreliable!

- Nia D., Atlanta, GA, US

problem #45

Sep 012011

Civic EX 1.7 Vtec

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles

I hear the 02 civic have a bad transmission and it is correct!! really bad. already slipping at 70,000 miles!!! i love hondas but not the way they design the transmission. i think i should sue honda, because they new of this problem maybe ill get way more money from the suing them then for honda to change or replace my transmission. I'm really pissed off and I'm sure everyone who owns and 02 civic.

- omorales14, Paterson, NJ, US

problem #44

Jan 052012

Civic Coupe 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 114,954 miles

noticed transmission starting to slip in cold weather between 2nd and 3rd gear, it's ok once it warms up but I don't know what's going to happen, it could last a year or it could go tomorrow. Seems like a lot of people with 2001 and 2002 Civics have the same problem and eventually end up having transmission replaced. Was quoted $500 for a used transmission with low kms from Tiger Japanese in Mississauga and another $400 in labour to install.

- Mike G., Niagara Falls, Ontario, canada

problem #43

Oct 312011

Civic EX 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 152,000 miles

Well, I baught this '02 civic brand new from the dealer in 10/02. Around 75k the trans started to slip, and i thought nothing of it. Just continued to drive it just a little more careful(and had fluid changed about every30k per dealer recommendations)....About 5 years later(now with 152,000) miles, its starting to slip so bad, im spinning the tires in between gears(and this is an automatic) It would slam so hard the dashboard would move....So, knowing this was near the end, took it to a local trans shop, and sure enough, complete trans failure! Cost to fix 2100$, not worth it on a 10 year old car with 152,000 miles on it needed alot of other things too..too long to list. For a $19,000 car, to get 10 years and 152k outta the trans is pretty good in my book, traded in this sick car for a 07 Accord EX-L, and love my new car!! WOuld buy hondas again & again....Besides this trans issue, in 10 years, all i put into the car was a alternator & battery(and tires & brakes too) Alot better than my Taurus, that was in the shop weekly!

- John B., Parma, OH, US

problem #42

Nov 252011

Civic EX 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 129,500 miles

Transmission started "flaring" between 2nd and 3rd gears when cold. Car shifted ok after it warmed up. Took it to a transmission shop and they confirmed it was on the way to failing. I traded it in while it was still running ok and bought a new car. Toyota this time.

- yeroks, Richardson, TX, US

problem #41

Oct 172011

Civic LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 78,000 miles

Four months back I heard from my friend that his Honda Odyssey's transmission break down, I thought he is just having a bad luck because he bought it used. 3 Months later, while driving back from work on my Honda civic, the transmission give up on me. The dealer asked for 3000 to fixed it. For the record it is a 2002 civic with 78k miles on it, and I have been servicing it regularly at the dealer. Since then, talking about it with my friends we discover there are another 3 of our close friends that run into the same problem. 1, is a 2008 Honda pilot, 2, is a Honda odyssey 2006, and 3, Odyssey 2004.

Within my close circle I know of 3 Odyssey, 1 pilot and my own civic having transmission breakdown, this is not a bad luck, rather a bad product by Honda.

I have pilot 2005 that are close to 70k now, I will for sure getting my self Honda free soon.

- irwan, Portland, OR, US

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