really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
106,887 miles
Total Complaints:
257 complaints

Most common solutions:

  1. replace transmission (130 reports)
  2. rebuild transmission (55 reports)
  3. not sure (51 reports)
  4. replaced transmission, Honda covered cost of parts (9 reports)
  5. open a case with honda corporate (7 reports)
  6. scrapped car (2 reports)
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2002 Honda Civic:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

This problem may be covered under warranty. Ask your Honda dealer.

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #217

Dec 222012

Civic DX 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 81,000 miles

Really ridiculous that this problem occurred in a car with 80k miles especially as I had always had required maintenance done and never abused my car - it abuses me!

- , Yuba City, CA, USA

problem #216

Mar 062012

Civic LX 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 37,000 miles

Transmission failure happened suddenly. I was just leaving the freeway and managed to get it back home when the transmission failed. I had to push it up into my driveway. I called AAA and had them tow me to my local Honda mechanic. I usually drive from Boulder Colorado to San Diego, so I was lucky that this happened before my trip.

Unfortunately, the same thing happened to my other 2002 Civic a few months earlier. At least I knew the symptoms and was able to get off the road quickly before it died. As for Honda, I don't know what has happened to them. I had a 1998 model, my brother had a 1995 model and both of them are still running at 250,000 miles. I don't think I'll ever buy another one at least until I know they are more reliable. I do warn people I know to be wary of the 2002 and other year Civics. These 2 cars have been the worst cars I have ever owned, and I've owned a lot in the last 50 years.

- , Boulder, CO, USA

problem #215

Oct 132012

Civic EX 4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 110,000 miles

I own a 2002 Honda Civic which I purchased new. Although I’ve experienced a few problems with several oil leaks and calipers wearing out prematurely, I never imagined that at 110,000 miles my transmission would fail. My vehicle became inoperable without any warning as I attempted to merge on a major highway in Washington DC. I could not shift into gear when I pressed the accelerator; fortunately, I was able to drift to the shoulder on the highway without incident. I had the vehicle towed to a Honda dealership where it was diagnosed as an internal transmission issue and I was advised that it would have to be replaced for $4700.

The cost for the transmission replacement was outrageous and after researching possible reasons for the failure, I had my vehicle towed from the Honda dealership to an independent repair shop. My vehicle was diagnosed with torque converter failure which caused metal shavings to damage clutches in the transmission. During my research, I read numerous complaints by hundreds of others who own a 2001 to 2003 Honda Civic and stated that their transmission failed when their mileage ranged from 135K to as low as 65K. Although Honda issued a 2004 recall on transmissions, it excluded the Honda Civic; I am outraged that despite the hundreds of transmission complaints from Honda Civic owners that a recall has not been issued for these vehicles to ensure the safety and welfare of drivers and passengers.

The large number of complaints from Honda Civic owners about the lack of reliability of their Civic’s automatic transmission is demonstrative of a defect. I hope that some entity decides to help car owners affected by the transmission failure so that owners will be compensated for expensive repairs.

- , Capitol Heights, MD, USA

problem #214

Sep 092012

Civic LX 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 101,000 miles

Could have caused a major accident, life threatening. Driving on local major highway 40mile+. Trans just failed, no warning, luckily no rear end collision. no shoulder just curb.

got lucky just coasted to next local street turn.

always did maintenance, just not have failed especially at 100k miles. Is this now going to occur to my Accord?? Always bought Hondas (6+) for reliability - now it is a question!!

This is not due to normal wear/tear.

- , Blue Bell, PA, USA

problem #213

Jul 162012

Civic EX 3.72 4cycle

  • Automatic transmission
  • 139,000 miles

Transmission just stop working! With out any warning the transmission just stopped. was working fine until that day. Maintenance required light came on a few days before it stopped.

- , Winterville, NC, USA

problem #212

Aug 302012

Civic LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 135,000 miles

I own a 2002 Honda Civic LX and the transmission just failed at 135,000. A couple weeks prior it made a whining noise and I figured it may be the transmission. I couldn't believe this happened because I thought, as many others do, that HONDA was a really reliable car. This car lasted me 10 years with 135,000 with not too many problems or things needing to be fixed besides this major transmission problem. I thought for sure this car would last me much longer. Obviously I would have to get transmission replaced for amount that car is not worth. I am going to scrap my car, maybe get some money for parts and put down on a newer , more reliable car. I have already heard that many people tried to get results from Honda with not much success. Also, I have heard some people replaced transmission with newer or rebuilt and didnt last much longer. Don't think it would be worth time or money. Anyway, I am really upset that my HONDA did not last longer and will not be purchasing one in the future. IF HONDA REALLY CARED ABOUT THEIR CUSTOMERS THEY WOULD REPLACE ALL 2002 TRANSMISSIONS AS A RECALL.

- , Parma, OH, USA

problem #211

Feb 032012

Civic EX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 57,000 miles

Will not buy another Honda. A transmission should't die @57,000 miles. No recall was ever issued for the 2002 Civic trans or I would have gladly taken it in as I did for the airbag problem. It took Honda 9 years to inform us that if the airbag deployed we could be hit by SHRAPNEL to the chest. Not how I want to check out. Anyway, $2,500 later with a rebuilt trans, can't wait to trade it in.

- , Greenwich, CT, USA

problem #210

Aug 122012

Civic LX 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 144,000 miles

I'm kicking myself for purchasing this vehicle. I thought I was buying a good brand name. I purchased the vehicle 3 months ago with 141,000 miles on it from the original owner. Less than 4k miles later, the transmission goes out on me, while turning onto incoming traffic. I am lucky I wasn't seriously injured or killed. The vehicle showed no signs of transmission problems and now I have a serious problem. I'm NEVER buying another foreign vehicle, luckily my 2001 Chevy s-10 is still running strong.

- , Estero, FL, USA

problem #209

Jul 162012

Civic EX 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 145,000 miles

I am adding my 2002 Honda Civic EX to the ever growing list of failed transmissions. No warning signals occurred except it would not change from 2nd to 3rd gear. At that point it revved up the RPMs to 5 or 6 thousand. Then it started slipping and we had to push the car to the nearest parking lot from the main street. This will be our last Honda!! This is my 5th Honda and my last!!!

- , Charlotte, NC, USA

problem #208

May 312012

Civic EX 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 180,000 miles

WOOO HOOO!! I made this sorry club ($1,200.00 to get in)! mine did the same as everyone elses 50 mph - 0 mph in no time flat and all of a sudden. At least I made it to 180,000 better than most i guess? Still sad that my 1995 Civic surpassed an 2002. Well so long to the forever running Honda's!! its open game to anyone now....

- , San Bernardino, CA, USA

problem #207

Jun 162012

Civic EX 1.7L V-Tech

  • Automatic transmission
  • 119,000 miles

Driving along the highway and suddenly the automatic transmission disengages/slips into neutral without warning, causing the engine do nothing but rev when the accelerator is pressed. Luckily, I was traveling downhill and was able to coast off the main highway to a side road at the next intersection.

The car is able to get back into gear for short periods of time, but quickly (less than 5 minutes) disengages and slips back into neutral when it warms up, and whilst in gear the engine struggles to deliver power. Thought Hondas were supposed to be reliable.

- , Minneola, FL, USA

problem #206

Dec 302009

Civic EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

A cold Wisconsin day in December 2009. Driving along the road, foot on the gas, and my car suddenly revved super high and when it went back down, it wouldn't accelerate past 30 mpr. Pulled into parking lot, got a ride home, towed car to shop. Verdict was complete transmission failure. Slapped a used Honda transmission in, while taking a very long time to complete.

- , Madison, WI, USA

problem #205

Jun 032012

Civic EX 1.7L V-Tech

  • Automatic transmission
  • 115,000 miles

I got this car because I thought honda brand vehicles were dependable. Apparently, I was wrong. I took very good care of my car but that didn't even matter. During regular servicing I would tell my mechanic of signs of slipping and engine light coming on and going off. We were both hoping that it wasn't the transmission beginning to go out. He didn't notice anything unusual with the transmission exept for a slow leak which we treated with stop leak. The leak stopped but my car started to lose more and more power and gas mileage got worse through out the next several months. About a couple weeks ago, I reported to my mechanic unusual sound and performance of my vehicle. He drove it him self with me in the passenger side and inevitably determined that my transmission was starting to fail. he recommended me to replace my transmission but I don't even have enough money.Transmissions are not suppose to go out that early. Whatever happened to honda's dependability?!

- , Savannah, GA, USA

problem #204

Apr 062012


  • Automatic transmission
  • 98,000 miles

Well maintained, lightly driven 2002 Honda Civic. Noticed a slight slip in transmission going from 2nd to 3rd one day, 2 days later it was immobile. Luckily it died right in front of my house. Don't think it's worth fixing.

- , Celebration, FL, USA

problem #203

May 302012

Civic DX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 109,000 miles


- , Raymond, NH, USA

problem #202

May 252012

Civic LX 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

I can add my 2002 Civic LX to the growing list of Honda transmission fails. Transmission shop says they see them all the time, in fact I'm in line behind a 2001 Honda Civic. I feel lucky that mine lasted this long. Having checked this site before, I knew it was coming, just a matter of time. Did the recommended fluid changes, no matter. It died suddenly, right at the start of a three-day weekend. I'm very lucky that it didn't fail while merging on the freeway. Had to tow it 25 miles.

- , Scotts Valley, CA, USA

problem #201

Mar 312011

Civic EX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 174,000 miles

Always thought Honda was supposed to be a great car. I just figured something may be wrong, didn't mention it. Had something else fixed and my mechanic asked if I'd been having any transmission problems. He had taken car for drive and noticed the same thing I had in the past. Not sure if I should try to save up for a new one or just save for a new car (haha in hopes the transmission doesn't go). After searching 2002 honda civic transmission I was floored to see how many complaints there are. Way to go Honda!!

- , Nobleboro, ME, USA

problem #200

May 092012

Civic LX 1.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles

So, out of the blue one day I'm driving on the highway and the car just suddenly slows down. I'm like freaking out because their are several cars behind me and I was almost in an accident. The car behind me almost crashed right into the back of me. I had no warnings, no light flashing to say there's something wrong with the car or anything.. so car drops down to 15 miles per hour and it starts to rev when it goes to 20 miles per hour..So not knowing what to do.. I brought my car into the Honda dealership and they told me I had to replace the whole transmission and it would cost $3,200. I never had any problems with the vehicle until this.. the funny thing is when I brought the car to the service place, the light finally came on and went off... so they told me i have to replace my sensor as well because it doesn't work. I am so frustrated and I don't know why Honda Civic wont do a recall on the transmission because I was almost injured. I researched online and found plenty of sites that complains about the transmission failure. I'm just glad I wasn't hurt! If there is any petition i could sign or this let me know. because this came to me at no warning!!

- , Hartford, CT, USA

problem #199

Aug 172011

Civic LX 1.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,923 miles

I bought a 2002 honda civic lx very low mileage it work well for a few years than automatic transmission faith it cost me a lot money to fix it and it faith again last 6 mouth I'm not happy with honda . I don't no what to do

- , Guayanilla, PR, USA

problem #198

Mar 012012


  • Automatic transmission
  • 89,000 miles

I am a poor graduate student. I have bought a Honda Civic 2002 on very low mileage. Well maintained. I drive infrequently, 7000 miles in 2 year and a half. It works well for a while. However, the transmission stopped working on the freeway without any warning! And it cost me nearly 3000 dollars to rebuild it's transmission!

I have COMPLETELY lost my faith in Honda!!!!!!

I will never buy a Honda in the future!

- , Berkely, CA, USA

Read the next 20 complaints »