03 Honda Accord LX I4 Autotragic

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potownrob
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03 Honda Accord LX I4 Autotragic

Postby potownrob » Wed Jul 20, 2011 2:47 am

I've been driving this car since early May and am ready to give a review on it. Overall a good car but not as good as I expected, despite having been around it for years and driven it on many occasions.
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Performance: - 3/5: Definitely not a fast car and I find it easier to drive slowly than quickly. I think the main culprits are the DBW throttle (if it's not DBW it sure acts like it) and the autotragic transmission, but it also is a 3000 lb. car with a 160 hp motor - powerful 10-15 years ago but pretty mediocre at best for cars these days. It can go somewhat quick if I hold the gas down. I haven't driven a manual 03+ Accord but I'd imagine they are much better and easier to drive quickly. The auto is a 5 speed, but it is also an auto and one that is too smart to be manipulated like the older Honda auto trannies (i.e. my old 93 Accord LX auto)...

Features: - 4/5: If I cared much about extra features like moonroofs, rims, 20 airbags, CD changers and power leather seats, I'd give it a 3 or lower, but it has everything I need and is missing very little I'd really like to have that I'd actually use. You can open the windows by turning the key 2-3 times to the right in the driver's door. I wish I could do it from the key fob but I don't really need that...

Comfort: - 3/5: I personally find the driver's seat uncomfortable, but I find most driver's seats uncomfortable. The other seats are all decent. Other people seem to like the seats but my sister also dislikes the seats on this generation Accord but likes her new 2011 seat. The heat and A/C work well but it's often hard to get it set at the right temperature or right vents or right fan speed for ultimate comfort. The car handles pretty well but it also has a somewhat stiff ride and you feel a lot of the bumps. New tires that got good ratings for comfort (and other things) helped some, but it's still no Volvo (or Camry). I've had a 91 Corolla, a 93 Accord, a 94 Civic, a 98 Maxima and a 96 Accord and I don't find this Accord to ride much nicer than any of those. If anything, the 93 Accord rode nicer than all 5 of the others...

Economy: - 3/5: I didn't realize how much the car was still worth when I suggested taking over the 03 Accord. Apparently it's still worth $7k USD even with 100k miles. Damn Hondas don't lose their value. Gas mileage is not as good as most of my older cars, averaging 25-28 mpg mixed driving and I have gotten 30-36 all highway. Very rarely do enough highway driving to get over 28 mpg though, even when I pussyfoot around. The low gas mileage surprises me since the 03 Accord got the new K series (K24A4) engine which should do better than the older F23, but it could be the way I drive it or something that needs to be replaced/cleaned in the engine or drivetrain...

Interior: - 3/5: The interior is pretty plain. The seats are ok lookswise and almost everything is in the right place, but it's nothing fancy (yes, i copied most of this from another review but it's how I feel about my interior too). There are nice pockets in the doors for drinks and decent cupholders in between the seats. Road noise is worse than I'd like, even with new tires that got good ratings for road noise, not terrible but you know you're not in a luxury car most of the time (or I do at least). Passengers usually like the car and one even thought it was brand new, so maybe I'm just picky/sensitive to little things.

FOSE: - 4/5: Nice big backseat (backseat's pretty comfy too), decent room even with the front seats moved back. You could also fold down the rear seats and use the trunk and seatbacks, if you're into that... Decent room up front too. No vibrating stick for her pleasure (and it not being a van or hatchback), one of the only possible drawbacks I can think of...

Overall: - 3/5: Decent car with decent looks. I love looking at it even when other people find it bland. Interior looks nice. Performance, fuel economy, comfort and ride could be much better, but it could just be me...
BUT DEM FAHGLEITZ!! :shock:

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Re: 03 Honda Accord LX I4 Autotragic

Postby Squint » Wed Jul 20, 2011 9:34 am

About the only thing that surprises me... you can open the windows using the key in the driver's door? I've never heard/seen this before...
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Re: 03 Honda Accord LX I4 Autotragic

Postby potownrob » Wed Jul 20, 2011 9:19 pm

Squint wrote:About the only thing that surprises me... you can open the windows using the key in the driver's door? I've never heard/seen this before...
yeah, it's a cool feature. i think the 98-02 accord (or at least some of them) had this feature too as i've seen them with the windows open evenly all around and vaguely remember my sister's 02 doing it too. the 03 accord in reviews was compared to german cars, and in many ways it does remind me of a VW, but it definitely is not a German car. While it feels solid and can be peppy, it's not fun like most German cars I've driven. Could just be the autotragic, or could be me...

p.s. there is no passenger door lock :shock: :| :)
BUT DEM FAHGLEITZ!! :shock:

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Re: 03 Honda Accord LX I4 Autotragic

Postby Chris H. » Thu Jul 21, 2011 4:07 pm

potownrob wrote:
Squint wrote:p.s. there is no passenger door lock :shock: :| :)


:shock:

What? Really?

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Re: 03 Honda Accord LX I4 Autotragic

Postby theholycow » Thu Jul 21, 2011 7:58 pm

I imagine he meant that there is no passenger door key cylinder. The door can only be unlocked using the power locks (whether by remote, by the button inside, or by the key in the drivers side lock cylinder), or from the inside. Pretty common these days. Lame IMO.
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Re: 03 Honda Accord LX I4 Autotragic

Postby potownrob » Thu Jul 21, 2011 8:21 pm

theholycow wrote:I imagine he meant that there is no passenger door key cylinder. The door can only be unlocked using the power locks (whether by remote, by the button inside, or by the key in the drivers side lock cylinder), or from the inside. Pretty common these days. Lame IMO.
ditto...and lame-o
BUT DEM FAHGLEITZ!! :shock:

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Re: 03 Honda Accord LX I4 Autotragic

Postby Chris H. » Thu Jul 21, 2011 9:30 pm

Oh.

Yeah that is lame. The Mustang in my driveway only has one door lock cylinder (I bleef), and so does the Exploder.

The other vehicles are base-trim trucks. Frills no thrills...and the last glimmer of simple in an automobile (at least partly in the Ranger, not so much in the F-150).

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Re: 03 Honda Accord LX I4 Autotragic

Postby theholycow » Thu Jul 21, 2011 9:45 pm

My 2008 VW was even more lame. Not only did it lack a passenger door key cylinder, it also didn't have a manual lock handle inside. Power locks ONLY.
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Re: 03 Honda Accord LX I4 Autotragic

Postby potownrob » Thu Jul 21, 2011 10:56 pm

paul34 wrote:what happens when your car goes underwater and the electrics stop working?
You die inside a rabbit
BUT DEM FAHGLEITZ!! :shock:

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Re: 03 Honda Accord LX I4 Autotragic

Postby Chris H. » Fri Jul 22, 2011 12:16 am

potownrob wrote:
paul34 wrote:what happens when your car goes underwater and the electrics stop working?
You die inside a rabbit


pah-dum-tsh

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Re: 03 Honda Accord LX I4 Autotragic

Postby theholycow » Fri Jul 22, 2011 6:43 am

paul34 wrote:what happens when your car goes underwater and the electrics stop working?

...or you have a fire or a blown fuse or the terrorists/aliens fire an EMP...

It didn't even have the locks hooked up to the latch handle like Fords used to (do they still?) where it unlocks when you pull the handle. I know it's not the best for child safety but I like that setup.
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Re: 03 Honda Accord LX I4 Autotragic

Postby Squint » Fri Jul 22, 2011 9:21 am

I know the new Fiesta and I think the new Focus both do not have manual locks. The Fiesta only has one unlock button, located on the center dash. THC, I don't recall if they do the auto open for front doors if locked and the handle is pulled.

What follows is a large picture. But you can see in the center the lock/unlock button. Next to emergency flashers (eat your heart out RP).

Image
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Re: 03 Honda Accord LX I4 Autotragic

Postby Bill B » Fri Jul 22, 2011 10:15 am

I think that my 07 Honda Element has the same or close to the same engine as the Accord 4 Cyl. If you feel like looking, here is a link to the photo of my Elements motor. I have tried to post pics, but must be missing something, because they never show up.
http://rides.webshots.com/photo/2225743 ... 1944IgSVoV The 4 cyl in the Element is definately not a speed machine, but the 5 speed probably does help a little. I have never driven an Element with an Automatic or an Accord either. The Accord probably gets a few miles more per gallon since the Element is not the most aerodynamic thing on the road.
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Re: 03 Honda Accord LX I4 Autotragic

Postby Shadow » Fri Jul 22, 2011 10:24 am

Squint wrote:About the only thing that surprises me... you can open the windows using the key in the driver's door? I've never heard/seen this before...


Yup, my 4Runner does that as well. You can open/close the back window with the key as well.

And my Audi allows me to open/close the windows and/or the sunroof with the remote. Pretty cool stuff...
Image

Chris H.

Re: 03 Honda Accord LX I4 Autotragic

Postby Chris H. » Fri Jul 22, 2011 1:40 pm

Squint wrote:I know the new Fiesta and I think the new Focus both do not have manual locks. The Fiesta only has one unlock button, located on the center dash. THC, I don't recall if they do the auto open for front doors if locked and the handle is pulled.

What follows is a large picture. But you can see in the center the lock/unlock button. Next to emergency flashers (eat your heart out RP).

http://www.thetorquereport.com/2009_ford_fiesta_8.jpg


I know on the Explorer we have, if the doors are locked and you pull on the handle inside on the front, the door unlocks (if the driver opens their door, all doors unlock I think).

All I know is, if I'm sitting in the back seat and I pull on the handle, the door won't unlock. It's annoying as f*ck.


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