1990 Honda Civic LX 1.5 from North America
Trouble-free, economical little car
- Was left stranded once when ignition coil failed, July 1991 I think. Repaired under warranty, then recalled later. No problems since.
- Four alternators (maybe problem was cheap alternators--latest one has gone two years now)
- Three mufflers -- aftermarket ones don't last more than a couple years.
- Condensation/leaks in taillights and headlights. Water would pool inside, and the first year I had the car the taillights were like little fishbowls. Drilled little holes in the lights to let the water run out, sealed taillights with bathtub caulk. Probably should've had a brain and taken it to the dealer under warranty, but never did. Fine ever since.
- Leak in oil pan gasket I can't seal up.
- Had a problem with a fuel pump relay, where the car wouldn't start when it was very hot. This was a big problem the last year I was in Texas (1997) and didn't get solved until I moved to Seattle.
- Some of the coolant hoses have gone, with pinhole leaks that become big enough for me to notice once the steam boils out.
- Right CV joint went out last year, sounds like the other one is going now.
But aside from these things just normal maintenance: brake pads, fluid changes, wiper blades, filters, etc.
The car was purchased new in 1990 and has been a solid little trooper ever since. It has been back and forth from Texas to New England and British Columbia many times and in all that time has only left me stranded once.
The interior is roomy for a small car, and the rear seat folds down to provide a large cargo space. I camped in the back seat/trunk many times. The car has carried more 2x4s and furniture than I care to mention.
The car is easy to maintain, though the rotor cap is always tough to get off. There's really not much to do to it aside from the usual maintenance.
I'm cheap and got the car for that reason, and it's really lived up to that expectation. Every other year since 1997 it seems to need a lot of work--brakes, muffler go at once, plus plugs, belts, etc.--but other than that it's just oil changes. Still can get 40+ MPG on the freeway, but mostly around town now get in the low 30s.
It may look a little dated and frumpy now compared to newer cars, but the paint still shines up nice.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 14th September, 2004