2021 Honda Passport Problems and Top Complaints – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Powertrain & suspension issues are among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners

Updated on Author: Brian Jones

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Manufactured by Isuzu as part of a partnership with Honda in the 1990s, the first two generations of the Honda Passport followed in the footsteps of Isuzu Rodeo. This is when Isuzu discontinued its production of passenger cars and Honda wanted to add an SUV to its lineup.

The Isuzu-Honda partnership ended in 2002, and the Honda Passport was replaced with the Pilot, engineered by Honda.

The first Honda-manufactured Passport was available for the 2019 model year. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) records that there were 6 recalls and 92 complaints that year.

There are 16 complaints registered with the NHTSA for the 2021 Honda Passport. The top complaint, with 5 on record, relates to the powertrain. The rest are spread between problems that have 1 or 2 complaints each.

In all, they cover the electrical system, engine, forward-collision avoidance, suspension, and tires, which have 2 problems each. Then with 1 problem each: exterior lighting, the fuel/propulsion system, land departure issues, service brakes and service brakes/hydraulic, vehicle speed control, and wheels.

We’re going to cover 3 of the most common problems reported to the NHTSA.

2021 Honda Passport Complaint Summary

Complaint CategoryNumber of Complaints
Forward Collision Avoidance: Automatic Emergency Braking
Power Train
Electrical System
Forward Collision Avoidance: Warnings
Service Brakes
Unknown Or Other
Exterior Lighting
Fuel/propulsion System

Powertrain Problems

A 2021 Honda Passport owner who has had recurring powertrain issues reports a dashboard message that says: “Transmission problem. See Manual.” When this happens, the car shifts automatically to neutral and then park. The only other option is to restart the car.

The complaint references a forum, and the complaint adds to concern that the fault may be potentially fatal.

Another complaint states that the Honda Passport shifts into neutral when the driver accelerates up a highway onramp. There is a transmission error warning on the dashboard. But the complaint states that the car cannot go back into gear until the ignition is cycled “a couple of times.”

The problem here is that there are safety risks because the car can’t move. It can’t even coast out of the traffic lane. The NHTSA complaint states:

“There was no known symptom prior to this event and the vehicle is currently at the dealership for repair/warranty evaluation though they state ‘it is not showing any error codes on the diagnostics plugin.’ They did state that on (the) test drive it ‘behaved perfectly’. But the Passport owner says when it was returned, it acted up again, “showing a dash warning but no diagnostic code.”

Another complaint relates to the towing rate achieved. This NHTSA complaint also cross-references a forum. Having bought the vehicle for its towing capacity, there are big questions here.

“The dealership told me that Honda knows about this and if they fix it they will let me know. To me, this means that this is a known engineering defect and they didn’t say if they have a fix or not.”

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Problems with the Suspension

One of the 2 suspension problems relates to a vibration the new owner noticed driving back from collecting a new Honda Passport. After waiting for 2.5 hours, the dealership said there weren’t any alignment or wheel balance issues. After 2 repair attempts, the issue still persists.

Tire Problems

In addition to the wheel problems mentioned above, 2021 Honda Passport owners also report tire issues. The 2 on record with NHTSA relate to tire blowouts.

What to do if your 2021 Honda Passport is a lemon? Your Lemon Rights?

A Lemberg Law article published in 2020 talks about the previous model and the problems and top complaints vehicle owners have. These issues may not be the same as those you have with your 2021 Honda Passport. But, if you think you have a lemon, contact us so that we can assess your problems.

We have successfully negotiated many cash settlements, buybacks, trade-ins, and replacement vehicles for clients. You may not know, but the law makes the manufacturer pay if vehicles are lemons, so you don’t have to worry about legal bills.

Brian Jones

About the Author:

Brian Jones spent more than 30 years working as an ASE Certified Master Tech and Parts Specialist at multiple dealerships. Brian has become an authority in the industry, traveling across the country to consult for car dealerships and contributing his expertise as a writer for several major automotive publications. In his spare time, Brian enjoys working on pickup trucks, muscle cars, Jeeps and anything related to motorsports.

See more posts from Brian Jones
  • Sam j

    2021 Honda passport AWD problems:
    Dashboard says door open when it’s locked
    Car occasionally refuse to go forward when in Drive and sometimes does not reverse.
    Remote with new batteries does not work..can’t lock or open car.
    Bright light does not come on unless lever on steering wheel is manually held.
    Dome light switch malfunctions.
    Heated steering wheel does not work
    I have only 17890 miles on new Honda.
    This is ridiculous…dangerous to drive on highway with these issues. Honda has to do a better job in notifying customers about problems.

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