RELIABILITY GUIDE: What’s the Most Reliable Year of Honda Accord?

Posted by

It’s generally accepted that the Honda Accord is one of the most reliable cars available, but according to the research from, there are good years and not so good years. If you’re in the market for a used Honda Accord, what are the years to look for, and which years should you avoid?

The Honda Accord is currently in the middle of its ninth generation, and debuted at the 2012 North American International Auto Show in Detroit as the Honda Accord Coupe Concept. The current generation went on sale in September of 2012 as a 2013 model. has a model year comparison of reliability information for the Honda Accord that stretches all the way back to 1979, when the Accord was in its very first generation. The key years we’ll focus on are current 2016 models back to the introduction of the seventh generation Accord that went on sale as a 2002 model year.

Reliability - Honda Accord is an online automotive complaint resource that uses graphs to show automotive defect patterns, based on complaint data that’s submitted by actual visitors to the site. The complaints are organized into groups with data published by vehicle, vehicle component, and specific problem.

The site also cross-references to NHTSA data to show the number of consumer complaints that align with those filed by site visitors.

SAFE BET: 2013 to Current (Ninth Generation Accord)

The current generation Accord — back to 2013 — has a low number of complaints at this point, with just 211 complaints reported. That volume of complaints is fairly insignificant, since Honda sold Accords at a rate of about 30,000 per month in 2013.

The other factor that the Ninth Generation Honda Accord has going for it is that the bulk of the complaints from that year (79) aren’t due to major mechanical issues, but concentrate more on interior accessory issues.

Reliability - Honda Accord 2013

Further, almost 40 percent of the interior complaints about the 2013 Accord aren’t due to something broken or non-functioning, but because of uncomfortable seats.

CONSIDER CAREFULLY: 2008 to 2012 Honda Accord (Eighth Generation)

The greatest number of issues reported by respondents occurred in the eighth generation, Honda Accords built between 2008 and 2012. 2008 marked the highest number of complaints reported for any Honda Accord model year, all the way back to 1979 in the database, with 2,305 complaints reported for that model year.

Reliability - Honda Accord 2008 Brake IssuesOut of those 2,305 complaints, site visitors reported 1,268 issues focused on the brakes, and over a thousand of those complaints revolved around premature brake wear. The typical repair cost was about $228, and the average mileage when the complaints were reported was just 26,048.

CONSIDER ANOTHER CAR: 2002 to 2007 Honda Accord (Seventh Generation)

The Seventh Generation Honda Accord didn’t have as many complaints reported as the Eighth Generation, but the severity of those complaints makes this generation — and especially the 2003 model year — one to avoid.

That year, site visitors reported 1,617 issues to the site. The biggest concern is that the vast majority of those complaints (945, more than all the other complaints combined) centered around transmission issues.

Reliability - Honda Accord 2003 Transmission

In particular, site visitors were having considerable problems with complete transmission failures, issues that resulted in an average repair bill of $2,696. Visitors reported that those problems were occurring before 100,000 miles.

It’s interesting to note that the peaks of all the complaints for every generation of Accord are all within one year of that particular generation’s introduction, which may lend some credence to the idea of waiting a few years after a new model is introduced.

Have a Honda Accord of your own? Add your own complaints to’s database. Get started here.

(Thanks to for the images and the data)


Craig Fitzgerald

Craig Fitzgerald

Writer, editor, lousy guitar player, dad. Content Marketing and Publication Manager at