Any thoughts and/or advice on this auto dilemma would be much appreciated. A friend has a 1999 Honda Civic Dx with 153,000 miles. Other than oil changes at 5k mile intervals, she hasn’t kept up with much maintenance. She recently had ignition coils and spark plugs replaced after breaking down on a highway. Shortly afterward, the CEL came on. Code P04020 (or P0420?). Dealer advised her that the catalytic converter, two oxygen sensors, and heat shields need replacement – cost is $1845. Dealer stated this is possibly a result of when the coil failed. Note, dealer is not the mechanic who did coils/plugs, he’s several hundred miles away. She also needs a new timing belt at a cost of roughly $900 (interference engine and belt never changed before).
does the dealer’s explanation of a possible cause make sense – cat failing due to coil/plug problem? I always thought cat problems were caused mainly by prolonged oil consumption.
are the costs reasonable? (My friend is in New York City, so labor is at premium prices.)
Would you keep and fix this car, or shop for something else at this point? The immediate repairs total $2745. She hopes to get at least another 2 years out of it. She drives about 8,000 miles/year.