The Civic is overall a good car, but the 2001-2005 Civic wasn't a really a good Civic. This version was a little too boring and the 4 speed automatic in our car makes it irritatingly slow and the reliability wasn't as good as expected. It hasn't been mechanical problems, but problems with quality. The plastics felt flimsy all along and the seats got worn out and small tears. Another issue is the shocks, which wear out and make the front end bounce under braking and acceleration. The brakes aren't good either, they take a long time to stop the car and the LX doesn't have ABS. These Civics are dependable economy cars, but the 2001-2005 versions don't impress in enough other ways.
Gas mileage, small dimensions, strongish engine, and good rear seat space.
It needs a better transmission, safety is a problem, really needs ABS, and just isn't interesting.