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If you had to list the most reliable sedans of all time, one car that might come to mind is the Honda Civic. This model has dominated since its introduction in 1973. It was one of the first to be fun to drive and was unique in design. The other perk – it was amazing on gas. “It’ll get you where you’re going” was more than a tagline. It became the Civic brand voice. Over the years, people flocked to own these little cars that seemed to last forever.

The 2020 Honda Civic is bringing more of what sedan lovers want in their vehicles. But, for those of you who may be considering a used model, there’s one model year you might want to avoid. Every car has that one problematic year. For the Civic, that year was 2016. Based on reported complaints and consumer issues, it was a significant year for malfunctions. So, what went wrong with the 2016 Honda Civic?

What’s new in 2020 for the Honda Civic?

The Honda Civic Type R on display
The Honda Civic Type R | Michael Debets/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images

Before we dive into the old, it’s worth getting excited about the new. If you’re interested in a 2020 Honda Civic, you’ll have plenty of new and upgraded features to review. There is modern styling for the hatchback and Civic Si models along with sound insulation to reduce noise. You’ll enjoy the best in fuel economy and performance, and you’ll have advanced technology and safety features at your fingertips. Expect high-quality materials and a roomy cabin that combine to make the Honda Civic an all-around comfortable ride.

Complaints for the 2016 Honda Civic

You may be surprised about this roster of common Honda Civic complaints in 2016. Consumers reported problems with interior accessories, A/C heater function, electrical functions, the engine, and the transmission. More sporadic complaints came in for brake issues, window and steering problems, and fuel system concerns too. With this many consumer reports, it’s easy to assume these problems are more than just a few isolated complaints. It’s proving to be a problematic year overall, which is uncharacteristic for the Civic.

The one area that the 2016 Honda Civic that encountered the most issues is the interior accessories category. With over 100 complaints, you might wonder what interior accessories caused the most problems. Over 30 of those 100+ reports were consumers presenting problems with their Bluetooth connectivity. Consumers shared experiences with their phones pairing fine initially, then suddenly discovering pairing failure with no resolution. Some cited that system reboots corrected the problem, but others were unable to secure a remedy.

Another 10 consumers experienced problems with their display screen not working altogether. Other interior issues included the speaker system failing, USB ports not working, unprovoked warning lights, and the radio not operating properly.

Technical service bulletins for 2016

If enough issues persist or the automaker recognizes problems due to manufacturing, the company will issue a technical service bulletin to alert consumers and dealerships for repairs. For the 2016 Honda Civic, there were 276 TSBs issued for various concerns. Engine mounts, axle seals, the electric parking brake, and cylinder misfires are some of the issues Honda acknowledged via TSBs. So, in addition to the previously mentioned interior and Bluetooth issues, the 2016 Civic has hiccups elsewhere too.

If you’re considering a new 2020 model Civic, you won’t be disappointed. If you’re thinking about buying or looking at a used Honda Civic, which is a smart move, be careful of which model year you purchase. There are a host of other model years with fewer reported concerns than 2016. If you have your eye on a 2016 model, just be sure to inquire about repairs and replacements. Otherwise, you might be taking on a menu of problems you don’t want.