1997 Honda Civic DX 1.6 from North America


Don't even waste your money, unless on a very very low budget!


Exhaust manifold cracked at 40,000 miles.

O2 sensor problems, why it needs TWO I'll never know, $$$$$ and more $$$$$.

Cheap metal, dings.

Auto transmission is going bad.

Bad alignment problems for a car that's never been wrecked.

General Comments:

The sheet metal on this car is joke!

The engine is OK I thought it would get better gas mileage. Less than they quote.

Automatic transmission. It seems like it takes 10 seconds just to engage a gear!

DON'T EVEN think about passing something, unless it's standing still.

O2 sensor, alignment, exhaust, rough idle, headlight seals, all have gone bad more than twice, paper thin brake rotors (warp all the time}, stalls when braking hard.

Gas hog on hills, etc.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 29th September, 2001

11th Jan 2002, 01:16

I own a 1997 Honda Civic EX and the transmissions has been slipping slightly on acceleration and thumps into gear as I slow to 10-15 mph then acclerate again. My Civic has 55,500 miles on it as this has been going on since about 30,000 miles but has gotten worse to the point I took it in for service. The Honda dealership recommended replacement today at a cost of $4,600.00. I saw a consumer fight back show on one of the big television stations on faulty 1997 Honda transmissions about 2-3 years ago for the same thing. I can't remember which reporter or station in Los Angeles did the segment, but they settled on a lesser amount through Honda Corporation. I hope they will be understanding when I ask for the same tomorrow morning.

1997 Honda Civic EX 4 cylinder from North America


The most sour lemon I've ever seen


Windows came off their tracks.

Bad window seals.

Poor overall acceleration and performance.

2 head gaskets.

Uncomfortable seating, front and rear.

Sheet metal too thin, dents easily.

Brake rotors have warped three times in the past three years.

CV joints.

Hard starting in cold temperatures (below freezing).

Transmission jerks violently during a forced downshift.

Head gasket.

Manifold gasket.

Rough idle (worse in cold weather).

General Comments:

I'm sorry I made the mistake of ever buying a Honda. I was lured in by rants and raves of Honda quality and reliability, but I guess somebody was smoking crack on the assembly line the day my car was built. Most of these problems were covered under warranty, but it's pretty inconvient having to borrow a neighbor's car three times in one month because mine was in the shop.

It has the comfort, performance, and reliability of a Chevy Chevette, and that's an overstatement. My 90 Buick Skylark was something I should have held on to. It didn't dent from little parking lot door scuffs. It actually had a little bit of power under the hood, more than I can say for this sorry excuse for a car. It was solid, reliable, dependable, and even better on gas. It had a few bugs here and there, but nothing close to being this bad.


Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 14th August, 2001

8th May 2002, 14:48

Not all Honda's are like that my mother has a '90 Honda and it has about 200000 miles on it. It runs perfectly. It goes into the shop only for it's yearly check-ups and oil changes. We live in a cold climate also and it starts fine. Not all cars can always start perfectly in the cold. I would much have her car than my '95 blazer that hardly runs. All in all I think you may have just got a bad car and should really think of trying another Honda out cause they are the best cars out there.

7th Oct 2002, 02:42

I have a 1991 Honda Civic with 250,000 miles and it is still going strong. I have never had to replace anything major. Matter of fact, the only thing I've had to replace is the CV joints, the clutch and the radiator. I just returned from a long trip and "Lucy Blue" is thirsty for more pavement!

12th Jul 2007, 13:09

I would say that Honda is definitely a good car. I did have problems with my 1997 Honda Civic EX and the window tracks, but I haven't had any severe problems. Had to get a new Alternator, Window Motor, Exhaust system, and I have 157000 miles on it and my sister in law and I are the only owners.

17th Aug 2009, 22:57

I've seen more and more 90s and early 2000s Hondas that were just unreliable. Back in the 80s, they were 200k cars easy. Not sure about 2005+ yet either, but sometime in the early 90s they went downhill something terrible.

Plus, driving a 90s Civic on the freeway was probably the most terrifying experience of my life!