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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I understand that Honda beefed up the engine in 2002 from 210hp to 240, and added a gear to the transmission.
I'm looking to replace my unfortunately totaled 2002 Ody. A Honda dealer has 2 cars I'm interested in: one is a 2000 with 92K miles for $5995 and a 2004 with 90K miles for $9595. I drove both, and both drive smooth and well. I couldn't really tell that the 2000 had less power. I will be towing a small camping trailer with it (very occasionally) , so I'm not sure that the 2000 will be up to it. Anyone have something to point out here. I put a deposit on the '04, but getting a good vehicle for less than $6K is interesting since we just replaced our other car and I don't want to take out another note.
Also, how do the '00 and '04 transmissions compare? Better mileage with the 5th gear? Less engine noise at highway speed? Reliability one vs the other?
Thanks for any input here.
Jim
 

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I have a late 2004 that had the transmission redesign done and didn't need the recall fix. It has been very solid for 110k. I have towed a 2002 Coleman/Fleetwood Bayside camper for 30+ trips and, knock on wood, it is still going strong. I would check to see if the 04 you are looking at had the newer transmission or the recalled one.
 

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I understand that Honda beefed up the engine in 2002 from 210hp to 240, and added a gear to the transmission.
I'm looking to replace my unfortunately totaled 2002 Ody. A Honda dealer has 2 cars I'm interested in: one is a 2000 with 92K miles for $5995 and a 2004 with 90K miles for $9595. I drove both, and both drive smooth and well. I couldn't really tell that the 2000 had less power. I will be towing a small camping trailer with it (very occasionally) , so I'm not sure that the 2000 will be up to it. Anyone have something to point out here. I put a deposit on the '04, but getting a good vehicle for less than $6K is interesting since we just replaced our other car and I don't want to take out another note.
Also, how do the '00 and '04 transmissions compare? Better mileage with the 5th gear? Less engine noise at highway speed? Reliability one vs the other?
Thanks for any input here.
Jim
I vote for the 2004 - newer is always better. As for the power, my speculation is that the extra 30 hp will not be noticed in normal driving, when you bring the engine over 4000 rpm's you will notice it. The gas mileage will not be very different. Also, don't look at horsepower numbers for trailer towing purposes, you want to look at the torque numbers. I don't know the differences between the torque numbers of those 2 years, I suspect that they are similar.
 

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If you can't tell the difference between the two then I would suggest looking at another 2004. I have driven both and the added power is noticeable. When you test drove them did you put the pedal to the floor? If you have a family to load it down with then bring them along. Our 2001 feels very different when loaded.
Happy Shopping
 

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As you know, the 2004 is the last of that five-year run of that body style. Honda got everything right that year, particularly troublesome issues with the transmission. Assuming the 2004 you looked at checks out fine, you won't regret buying it. I strongly recommend that whatever you buy, that you put a beefy stacked-plate transmission cooler on it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the replies.
I did notice a bit of difference in power between the two, but it wan't huge, and not enough that I thought it'd bug me. Still, the idea of the '04 sounds better.
I'm not aware of the transmission redesign or recall fix for the '04s. Can you tell me more? There's nothing on the carfax that mentions any recall work. The vehicle was purchased in March of '04. I didn't look for the manufacture date.
 

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I may be mistaken on this, but a few years ago I remember reading something to the effect that the problem with the 5-speeds when they were first introduced (02 or 03) is that the oil supply to the second speed gear pack was inadequate. The 04's aren't known for having any of the transmission problems that earlier 5 speed models had. But again, heat is a big killer, so the cooler you can keep the fluid, the better.

Also, about every 5000 miles, I drop the fluid in the case (about 3.2 quarts) and replace that with new Honda fluid. I used to run Mobil synthetic ATF but there's just something about the additive package that Honda specifies for their brand name ATF that makes their transmission work better. Instead of buying the Honda ATF from the dealer (pricey) you can get it by the case by ordering at any CarQuest store, if you have those in your area. The product number to ask for at Carquest is - WPC Z800188443 OES (I think the "O" character in the OES is the capital letter "o", not numeral zero.)
 

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As others have already said, I would go for the 2004 and then I would just beat them up on the price a bit to get it as low as possible to hopefully knock a couple of grand off of it.

The transmission issues were just starting around 2000 and was about resolved in 2004, so that's the biggest reason for getting the 2004. The last year of a generation is always the most reliable because every quirk/bug/issue has been resolved in the previous years. The 2004 is actually the 6th year of that model so it is quite solid.

One other thing to keep in mind is that since both are nearing 100K miles, they will need a timing belt job shortly, so make sure you factor that cost into your budget.
 
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