1990 Honda Accord 2.0 litre (carburettor) from UK and Ireland


Quite possibly the best mundane-looking under-powered Japanese saloon ever.


Battery replaced at 156000 miles. Heater dial became loose and fell off at 100000 miles. Other than that, a perfectly reliable car, only ever needing the odd 'wear and tear' parts replaced.

General Comments:

This car is a revelation when compared to similarly sized cars of the era (Vauxhall Cavalier, Ford Sierra, et al). The cabin is almost up to BMW standards, with soft-touch dashboard, but the odd flimsy piece of trim (in particular, the centre console) lets it down. Handling wise it's all very good, with a bit of race car in the all-round double-wishbone suspension, despite the very light and uncommunicative, if direct steering. Unfortunately, body control is affected a little by undulations in the road (very common in the North of Scotland). But the car, dare I say it, is far more fun than its staid bodywork suggests. The SOHC engine becomes very raspy at high revs (which is good, of course), though you won't be forgiven for mistaking the engine note for an NSX's.. The bodywork is looking very tatty now, thanks in part to my pack-ice-handbrake-turn-antics (I smashed the rear wing in to a tree), but the car, as suggested in other commentary is tank-like in its build and survived bruised, but intact. As a winter car it does quite well, but with normal tyres at the rear, and winter tyres at the front, and without any provocation you can get it to drift sideways. Which is a hoot.. Alas.. the road salt is eating away at its far-from-svelte lines, I hope, once it's un-roadworthy, that that over-engineered SOHC lump just might live on in a stock car..

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 21st June, 2002

23rd Nov 2005, 03:20

I completely agree with your comments about drifting. I'm a WRC fan with an Accord. Not a good combination, but it's a good enough car to outlive any other car else on the trails.

1990 Honda Accord EX 2.2 Litre 4 cylinder. 16v MPFI from North America


Reliable, fun to drive, and even stylish


The year I bought the car, I needed to replace the rear brake pads, which was a cheap fix on any 10 year old car.

I also needed to replace ball joints twice, as well as CV joints and axles.

The front rotors went out of round last year, as well as another front axle.

Recently, my alternator died while on my way back from out of town, but the car made it back on battery power. A new alternator cost me about $540 with labour.

Also, I have replaced 3 blower fan motors within the last 2 years. These are about $150 a piece, with the last one, being a Denso, cost about $240.

Trunk seems to collect condensation in the carpet, a periodic airing out fixes that.

The car needed a new flex pipe to pass a recent safety. As well, the exhaust system has been through many pipes and mufflers, the most recent muffler change being when the old one was accidently folded when taking the car off roading. This car is not designed to drive over rocks.

The transaxle controller went out a couple years ago, and the tranny was stuck in second gear. This was at a cost of about $600.

Car needs an alignment badly.

General Comments:

This car has been in my family for the past 12 years. My parents bought it new in 1990, and took very good care of it. For a 12 year old family sedan, this car has balls.

The 4th generation Accords with an automatic transmission included a sports button on the gearshift, which changes the shift points and delays, which make the car a blast to drive.

This car recently T-Boned a 1986 Chevrolet Caprice, and won. The Accord drove away from the accident, the Caprice was seriously disabled. This generation of Accord is built like a tank.

This car has only let me down once. This is when the alternator went, I had to cab it to work once. Overall, even when things did go wrong, the Accord was still driveable.

For a 4 cylinder engine, this car goes. Has plenty of power in town and on the highway.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 11th May, 2002

17th Jul 2003, 08:11

Your Lucky your car didn't blow up.

13th Jan 2006, 18:35

Any car that t-bones another car will "win". The front of the car is the strongest. The side of a car does not have a bumper to absorb the impact.

15th May 2006, 01:17

> A new alternator cost me about $540 with labour.

A rebuilt alternator and a wrench would have cost a tenth that.

11th Aug 2008, 23:01

1990 Honda Accord EXR (same as EX model in US)

This is one of the finest and most reliable vehicles you can buy (for the money).

I've owned my 1990 Accord for 8 years. It now has 460k on it. Everything works except the AC. I've replaced lots of little bits on the car but the engine, and 5-speed transmission are unbreakable!!!

Weaknesses: main ignition relay, distributor (apparently, but I've only ever seen one bad one from dozens of these cars), interior door handles (if you reef on them, they will crack, gentle service is a non-issue), front brake rotor replacement requires hub removal.

Strengths: fuel economy, excellent fit and finish, high quality interior materials, robust electronics (power windows, sunroof, blower motor, locks etc...), solid suspension and chassis, excellent handling and road feel, fun to drive, attention to detail, contemporary looks, reliable, etc... The list goes on.

List of items I've replaced: brakes, struts, ball joints, tie rod ends, sway bar end links, clutch, rad, exhaust, O2 sensor, thermostats, air filter, timing belt and water pump service, alternator, battery, belts, front flex lines, front wheel bearings, tires, axles, valve cover gasket, oil pressure switch, transmission fluid, and regular oil/filter changes. All regular wear or regular maintenance items. Not bad for 8 years and 160k.

I look forward to another 4 years with this Accord before I buy my next Accord.

3rd Feb 2011, 18:42

You paid someone $440 in labor to change a $100 alternator? My goodness, whoever did the alternator job made about $220 for each bolt they removed and replaced.