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  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2007

    Steering problem 2004 Civic Hybrid

    I am about to purchase a new 2007 Civic Hybrid.

    Just thought you 2003-5 Civic Hybrid drivers might want to know about my perhaps limited experience.

    I owned a 2004. I think people should be aware that that model had a steering defect. Honda had not perfected the electric steering box at the time and the car has a tendency to steer in the corrected correction without ever centering the car. This is subtle to feel, but simply put in the following words: If the car is moving to the right in a normally steering car, you make the correction to the left and the cars tracks straight ahead when reaching the center point as a result. In the 2004 Civic hybrid, the tendency is that the car does not center after the correction to the left, but rather continues through the center point and keeps moving to the left. Then you need to correct this and move the steering wheel to the right, and again it does not center, but rather continues past the center point. This goes on continually. You cannot center the car without continual correction in a back and forth movement. The reaso most people do not notice this is because the human body automatically corrects for this incorrect tendency in the movement.

    When I first noticed it, I thought, no this is not happening. After awhile I was convinced it was happening. I took it to Honda and they tried adjusting camber in the back wheels and other fixes. I thought they were going to think I was imagining it. However, the service manager admitted that I was correct and that although it was subtle, the defect was there. I sold the car shortly after this.

    FYI, the reason that they are not making a CRV or Pilot in Hybrid is supposedly due to problem with Honda's inability to design an electric steering box that can handle the weight of those vehicles. Also, this is perhaps the reason that the Toyota Highlander Hybrid reportedly steers through corners like a Sherman tank.

    The new 2007 Civic Hybrid does not suffer this steering problem. FYI, I have owned some 30 cars including a BMW M3, and Acura GS 6 speed, and I have never encountered the steering problem in any other passenger car vehicle.

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  3. #2
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Quote Originally Posted by Monty View Post
    FYI, the reason that they are not making a CRV or Pilot in Hybrid is supposedly due to problem with Honda's inability to design an electric steering box that can handle the weight of those vehicles. Also, this is perhaps the reason that the Toyota Highlander Hybrid reportedly steers through corners like a Sherman tank.
    First of all, congratulations on your new 2007 HCH. Indeed, it is a vastly improved product over our first gen HCH line.

    Now, with respect to the statement you made above. Perhaps I can restate what has been public knowledge for several years already.

    Honda will not produce a hybrid CRV or Pilot (or others) in the next ten years or more, not because of the steering issues, but instead because Honda does not regard their current hybrid technologies as suitable for anything larger than a compact car.
    It has stated so numerous times through press releases that larger vehicles will instead be powered by their next generation petrol and clean diesel powerplants.
    Its corporate and engineering perspective is that hybrid technologies return maximum emissions and fuel economy benefits in smaller vehicles and would provide diminishing returns for larger vehicles. Clearly to remedy this, they've made a significant investment in clean diesel technologies while in accordance to their long standing company philosophy.

    Also according to many automotive analysts, their proprietary IMA is not effectively scaleable to larger vehicle platforms as Toyota's HSD system. This pretty much places Honda in a position of having to invest significant amounts of R&D of new hybrid technology that fits large vehicle applications. While most North American consumers would say "why not then?". - Honda will not do it because it is also a violation of Soichiro Honda's philosophy, which the company tries very hard to avoid.
    Honda will never apply high technologies to large vehicles because of this - it is a very stubborn company - but that is why they are consistently regarded as the greenest auto company.

    On a more personal note:
    Heck, I was even surprised that they allowed their North American division to produce a V6 powerplant and the flurry of SUV's + pickup they been selling to North Americans for the last decade. At least they are resisting the pressure to release a V8 powerplant which to me is encouraging.



  4. #3

    We have the same steering

    We have the same steering problem with our normal Honda Civic 2004 (1.4 litre gasoline). I wish there was something that could be done. Like disabling the servo at speeds or something.

  5. #4

    I purchased the 2007 Civic

    I purchased the 2007 Civic Hybrid December 2007 in the UK. My steering wanders just as described. Also it has a worrying tendancy to drift to the left. Honda say it is just following the road camber (we drive on the left in the UK) but after a long Mortorway journey my arm aches due to the effort to keep the damn vehicle on the road. Honda still investigating problem but I am not holding my breath.

  6. #5

    I own a 2008 Civic Hybrid.

    I own a 2008 Civic Hybrid. I just got back from the shop after having the steering rack changed (under warranty). The reason for the change was that there was a noise in the steering system. With the new steering rack in place today, the steering effort is noticeably lighter when turning to the right, vs turning to the left. The left turn effort feels "normal" (like the old rack did). The right turn effort feels too light, and the wheel doesn't center back after a right turn without manual effort. The dealer is ordering me another rack. I'm wondering if anyone else has had this problem too.

  7. #6

    Hi, I bought hinda civic

    Hi, I bought hinda civic hybrid late 2007. when driving, my steering will drift to the left, i took it to honda and i was told that it is only following the road camber. is this true?
    Also, when turning my steering to the left or right, it make tiny click noise, honda said its normal that power steering make tiny noise (click tiny nioise) when turning either right or left. is it true?

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