1990 Honda Accord Owner Crosses 1 Million Miles, Gets New Accord for Persistence

1990 Honda Accord vs. 2012 Honda AccordThe average life expectancy of a solidly maintained vehicle is about eight years or 150,000 miles, according to Consumer Reports. Take that figure into consideration when Honda announced it found an owner that crossed the millionth-mile marker on his odometer with his 21-year-old Honda Accord.

This feat was accomplished by Joe LoCicero of Maine, who has taken fastidious care of his Accord since he acquired it 15 years ago. In terms of servicing his vehicle, LoCicero has followed the owner’s manual and maintenance schedule to a T, according to Honda. He checks fluids weekly and changes the oil every 5,000 miles, always using the same brand and making sure to switch the grade of motor oil when the seasons change. He never lets the fuel tank get anywhere close to empty and never rides heavy on the brakes. LoCicero needs to keep a close eye on his car since he drives about 62,500 miles every year, about four times more than the typical driver. Even so, the fuel pump and both cooling fans needed to be replaced due to wear, and so did the radiator, twice.

For his efforts, Honda gave LoCicero a brand-new 2012 Honda Accord and even threw him a ticker-tape parade in his honor.

Of course, if you were as religiously devoted to your car as Joe is, you could probably make yours last just as long. Still, we’re interested in knowing how he avoided getting any rust on his 1990 Accord — body rust was a common problem for Hondas of this vintage.

By Colin Bird | October 26, 2011 | Comments (52)



If he was that fastidious with maintenance then he was probably also that way with keeping it clean which will do wonders for minimizing corrosion (oh and he probably kept it garaged).


All it takes is common sense. Where I work we get people who drive 15,000 miles or more between oil changes on conventional oil and get mad when the engine starts knocking.


Read the same story elsewhere a few days ago. This guy is also a Master Auto Technician that travels all over new england to help other mechanics!
Kind of a small detail omitted their.

Anonymous Coward

They should have given him a new Civic, which is more like a 1990 Accord than a new Accord.


Notice the overly-bloated look on the new Accord. That's why I won't ever buy one. Long live the look of the Camry.


Thank you for the story. It is always good to read special interest stories. I always like to find out how people make cars, razor blades, appliances, etc last longer. This is good for the wallet and the environment. Keep these stories coming.


I had a '91 Accord SE. This was my favorite year for the Accord. I had the greenish blue with the tan leather interior. Besides following normal maintenance, all you have to do is wash weekly and wax monthly, and I had no issues with rust on mine. I sold it last year with 298k miles. These were solid and fun. Honda should get back to the basics!


Amazing how excited one can get over Accords and Camrys. Long live vanilla!


A few observations:

1 - Driving 62K miles per year? I better find something else to do than sit my butt for so long, losing years of my life behind the wheel.

2 - The new Accord will probably not make to a million mile.

3 - 90s Mazda Protege would fall to the ground from the rust in the suspension by now.

4 - Should Mazda give me new M3 if I prove that my 98 protege got 200k WITHOUT any major maintenance?

Adam Gonzalez

If anyone wants to buy a new Honda at a killer price feel free to email me I work at showcase honda in phoenix AZ


Really Adam, the price you will sell a new Honda will kill me...ha ha.


1. As opposed to losing years sitting on your butt behind a desk?

2. Why not?

3. Not if you keep it clean and garaged.

4. No.



are you familiar with WFH concept?
This is Work From Home. Sit a little @ your desk, go move the lawn, work some more, do some exercise, etc....

Why not? Because transmission will fail. Who is going to spend $3000 every 150K?

It doesn't matter where you keep your Mazda. It has historical rust issues.

Why not?

Steve G

I bought my 1993 Honda Accord EX "New" and road
410,000 miles before crashing. The Engine and
Transmission was never
replaced (Changed all Fluids).
I received no parade or ackknowledgement after
contacting Honda. I put every mile on the vehicle
and have documents to prove

My parents bought a new '83 Accord 6 months after I was born. We got rid of it when it started to have an electrical 'leak' no one could find. That was right after I graduated from college, more than 21 years later!

Dan Cronan

It has NOTHING do do with fastidious maintenance & EVERYTHING to do with the car being a HONDA!!! JUST TRY to do this with a General Mistakes or Crapsler product!!!!!!!


@Steve G
Why would you expect Honda to expect a parade or acknowledgement? While 410K is a nice feat, it doesn't even compare to 1 million miles...you're not even 1/2 way there.


The old Hondas and Toyotas were great. The newer ones...not so much. My 2000 Camry started burning oil at 39,000 miles despite having changed the oil (with high-quality oil of the correct weight) every 3000 miles.


I don't know anyone with a Honda that hasn't fallen to pieces. This is fantastic.


I had a 21 year old Civic. It ran like a top and was getting 36 mpg. I was rear-ended and my car was considered totaled because of it's age. It only had 165K miles. I now have a 2009 Civic, but at best it gets 29 mpg...


@Dan Cronan

Please stop your fanboy tomfoolery and don't downplay the importance of maintenance. Calvin Vincent has over 2 million miles on his Chevy pickup.


I agree with Tony.

Bought a new Honda Pilot this year after not buying new since my 1987 Honda Accord Coupe. Transmission needs replacing after only 7000 miles. 7000! Honda is not what it used to be.


I'm wondering about the rust too. Keep in mind this guy lived in Maine and drove all over New England. If you never lived in an area where roads are constantly salted/sanded for half the year, you don't understand how difficult it can be to keep your car free of rust. Obviously it can be done, but it's not easy. Many cars in New England rust out long before an engine or transmission breaks down. I moved from VT to PA and as far road salting and car rust goes they are different worlds. You can even tell just comparing used car ads between the two states...PA used car ads will usually highlight "clean" and "highway miles" and VT/New England ads will highlight "rust-free," and sometimes even "southern car" (meaning it spent part of life in southern US, not exposed to salty roads).


Wow don't think i'll even drive a million miles in my lifetime. My back doesn't need that noooo sir!


Those miles have to be mostly highway, that helps account for the transmission not being overworked. and he probably got his trans fluid and filters changed each 100,000 miles or whatever the manual says


when someone cares that much for a car.....i think he'll sell the new one lolz!


Probably a scam he is a master mechanic and heard about General motors giving a guy a new Saab when that guy reached a million.

Amuro Ray

Apparently, no one here knows about Al Bundy & his Dodge!


Oh man, how I missed that show :*-(


Life is too short to be driving a Honda Accord for your whole life.

My 1991 Accord rolled up 340,000 miles last week.


Wow, Honda has built a car that is about a third as good as a 1960's Volvo. If they keep this up, pretty soon they'll be half as good as Volvo!



I do not like the new Hondas at all. They are bloated, under mileaged, over priced, over packaged, ugly, blech!
Even the Fit has every power crap thing in it. Where is an entry level car under 11 grand? I don't see one. I miss the days of "We Make it Simple".
I hope he keeps one of the last good ones. I have my doubts this new one will be as good to him over the next 10 years.

Lyn Martin

I recently sold my 1988 Honda Accord simply because I had the opportunity to buy a newer vehicle. I miss my Accord and at 23 years old, it never showed a speck of rust, the car was wonderful. Kudos to Ho
nda for a great product.

Amuro Ray

@ Kenny,

If u r referring to new cars only, stretch ur eyelids a little bit farther apart:

2012 Nissan Versa base: $10990
2011 Nissan Versa base (if u can find one, which is still possible): $9990
2011 Hyundai Accent base (also if u can find one): $9943 (or sthg in that ball park).


Kenny needs to check out the Tata Nano...seems like the perfect car

bob mortega

Wow. Since my accord is exempt i guess i'll just roll up the miles and get a new accord


Just giving my 2 cents..
I have a 1989 honda accord w 489,019. Runs fine, original engine & trans(and its an auto) I havent done anything to this car but brakes, oil, tires, battery, drive shafts & a few new wipers. Hondas are the best cars on the road by far...nothing comes close to there reliablity. Try that with a chevy malibu, and your lucky to get 100k before you need head gaskets & a ton of other stuff...Long live honda!


I agree w monavie h. 2007 dodge, needs trans replacement at 30k. American cars have gone down the toilet..ANd they wonder why ppl buy foreign cars...Its a no brainer


@ bob,
agreed. variety much?

Bob saget

I baught a 2008 honda accord, and it currently has 180,000MI on it, and its running great. I redline it, spin the tires and do neutral to drive drops...Its an awesome car thats unbreakable. Why would you buy a chevy or dodge? Youll end up wasting money on repairs...and ford fusions are garbage as well..

Manuel Noriega

@ bob saget, why would you do that to your car, thats just stupid?

Jimmy Demora

We have had a 1996 honda accord in our family since 1996...This was a VP(value package) and has no power anything...It has 391,406 and is still our daily driver. Its a i-4 manual. Wouldnt ever consider buying any other car than a honda accord. This car is bulletproof. Has seen quite a bit over its life, and still runs like a champ...I dont spin the tires like previous poster says, but as a daily driver, it has never left me stranded. My wife has a 2002 Dodge neon, and the engine blew at 65k.
You do the math.


I agree w jimmy demora, dodge neons are total garbage..I had an intrepid, and it was in the shop every month for something new.


SO i had a 1994 Honda accord, and had little to no problems with it except leaks, squeaks & rattles...It needed some sound deadning materials...and from what i understand the 2012 accords are squeaky too. You'd think in 20 years they would fix that!


My 1990 Accord LX just rolled 282,000 in July 2012. Bought her brand spanking new in December 1989 here in Houston... and still going strong. Replaced radiator, muffler, clutch. Still on original engine (thank you, Jesus!). Have always maintained Honda specs...maintenance, timing belts, whatever. Have ALWAYS bought Michelin tires (almost 23 years now). Recently had almost disastrous problem...took her in for oil change and my mechanic (been going to him 14 years) tripped out...said not one drop of oil in my car!!!. I won't even tell you how seriously past due I was because it's totally embarassing (I'm a woman so please don't hold it against me). Long story short, the oil indicator warning light never came on to warn me...so got that fixed last week. However, I take full responsibility for not having any oil in it as I never, ever check it...my fault, warning light or not. Lesson learned...now check oil level every time I fill up (thank you again, Jesus for looking out for me). I have been so happy with my Honda and absolutely dread the day I'll have to buy a new car....it's inevitable...AND I don't think they make 'em like they used to. Would even consider Acura. I am AFRAID of new cars and all the high-tech problems that can occur. I will always buy foreign vehicles...until such time the American auto manufacturers get it right and make a damn good vehicle...at which time I will probably be resting in peace. Honda rocks!!!!


I sell Chrysler, because no orientals, no east indians, no clipboard scool teachers who "just started doing the research". But I drive a Honda, the best product by far.


I have a 96 accord with 383K. No problem with engine or auto tran. Just a radiatior, oil press. switch, and a few axles and
brakes. Best car I ever had.

nissan sucks

i have a 1989 toyota pickup V6 it has 429k. it runs awesome. it drives better than my 2012 nissan frontier v6 which has 15k


I have a 1991 Honda Accord EX and purchased it brand new on June 7, 1991. I currently have 310,328 miles. I still have the original engine and transmission. Interior is in excellent condition but body rust has surfaced. The car still runs good. 1991 was an excellent year for quality on the accord.
The gas mileage is much better than my 2009 Accord.


The wife and I have (had) two Honda's. A 2006 Element and 2004 CRV. Both with 150,000 plus miles. The wife had an altercation with a 2500 pound elk last week in the CRV. The elk won the battle but the CRV saved my wife's life. We have to go car shopping now. We'll be buying another CRV. Unless another elk gets in the way I'm sure the Element will easily make it to 300,000 plus. Love that thing.


Ideally a guy like him who drives so many miles should buy a Tesla and save on gas.

If not Tesla, at least Volt.


I have a 2003 acura rsx (honda product) that has 201,000 miles and i take it to the drag strip and road courses pretty often. I am far from "easy" on my car but it holds up better than any other car ive owned. Ive never had to change anything major, tensioner pulley at 176,000, a clutch release bearing at 185,000, a water pump at 193,000, and a belt at 197,000. I am thoroughly impressed with this car. LONG LIVE HONDA!!!

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