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2.9

hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
49,188 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2002 Toyota Prius steering problems

steering problem

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2002 Toyota Prius Owner Comments

problem #8

Jan 052012

Prius 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 58,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

The contact owns a 2002 Toyota Prius. The contact stated that immediately after starting the vehicle, the steering wheel would shake violently. The vehicle was taken to the dealer. The technician diagnosed that the rack and pinion was defective and needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure but did not offer any assistance since the vehicle was no longer under warranty. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was not available. The failure mileage was 58,000 and the current mileage was 68,000. Updated 04/30/13 the consumer stated when she attempted to make a turn, the steering wheel would shake violently. The dealer stated the the rack and pinion was defective and needed to be replaced. The consumer was quoted a price of $ 3,000.

- Los Angeles , CA, USA

problem #7

Nov 112011

Prius 4-cyl

  • 65,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Toyota Prius. The contact stated that there was a malfunction in the power steering system which caused the steering wheel to seize while driving. The vehicle was towed to the dealer who replaced the angle sensor. The vehicle was repaired under NHTSA campaign id number: 11V304000 (steering:electric power assist system) prior to the failure. The manufacturer was notified and the contact filed a complaint. The vehicle was in the process of being repaired. The failure and the current mileage was 65,000. Updated 01/04/12 the vehicle was towed to the dealer who reinitialized the torqued angle sensor.

- Burmingham, AL, USA

problem #6

Dec 152009

Prius 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 33,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Toyota Prius. The contact stated that upon starting, the vehicle jerked forward. In addition, while attempting to stop at a stop sign, the contact depressed the brake pedal but the vehicle hesitated to stop. The failure occurred on an intermittent basis. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic and an authorized dealer for diagnostics. The technicians were unable to duplicate the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 33,000... updated 09/15/11 the consumer stated he/she took the vehicle to the dealer auto shop on August 2, 2011 for the replacement of the electric power steering pinion shaft nuts. They adjusted the gear, accelerator and steering. However, the problem still exists. The vehicle accelerates and moves forward as soon as the consumer starts it. Updated 10/03/11

- East Meadow , NY, USA

problem #5

Sep 262006

Prius 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 92,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Power steering failure. When first starting car steering can sometimes vibrate vigorously, then warning light can come on sometimes power steering works for a wile then fail other times it fails immediately making steering very difficult.

- Kaysville, UT, USA

problem #4

Jul 012006

Prius

  • 51,500 miles
Steering in car locks up at higher speeds. The issue seems consistent with the 2001 recall items. Toyota customer service refuses to offer assistance without charging and claims steering to not be covered under power train warranty.

- Saint Paul, MN, USA

problem #3

Jul 092006

Prius

  • miles
Continuation of complaint (ODI numbers) 10162367-68 earlier that day we had driven my daughter-in-law and granddaughter to fumicino airport in rome and then returned home. We could only imagine what a catastrophe would have occurred if that freezing of the steering wheel had occurred at autostrada speeds. In the meantime, bi auto in florence has informed me that the part (no 44200-47060) must be delivered from Japan and will take a minimum of 10 days. In an attempt to expedite service, I contacted the Toyota customer service in torrance, California (ref # 200607110691) to see if the part may be more readily available and shipped sooner from the us. Their answer was no. Further, they indicated that since the Prius was outside the us, they were not willing to honor the warranty extension and thus the $3500 repair would be at my expense. I will now contact my us dealer (I bought a second Prius in 2004, which is still in the us) to see if they will intercede on my behalf. But what's especially troubling is even if this replacement performed is whether (1) Toyota has made any improvement in the replacement part to eliminate the failure (apparently the 2004 replacement was ineffective), (2) for how many miles might this new replacement part last, and (3) will there be any warning, such as the stiffness in turning, that will precede a catastrophic failure such as this freezing of the steering wheel. For the online form, I have provided my us contact numbers. However, until August 6th, I will continue to be in italy.

- Pittsburgh, PA, USA

problem #2

Jul 092006

Prius 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 47,000 miles
Continuation of complaint (ODI number) 10162367 the steering was each time frozen in the center position with no possibility of turning to the right or left. The earlier problem was not demonstrable to the Toyota service manager when the car had been brought in for servicing in October 26, 2005 and March 2, 2006 (during a one week visit), but because I had more time in July, I had scheduled a total inspection for the steering mechanism on Tuesday, July 11th. After this catastrophic failure, however, I had the car immediately towed to bi auto Toyota in florence for repair. Despite the fact that the towing charge was more than $200, I had no confidence that this car could be driven safely to the dealership. At the dealership, the service technicians identified the problem as requiring the replacement of the scatola guida, a part with a price-tag of 2840 euros (approximately $3500). When I called back to my Toyota dealer in pittsburgh, I was told that the most expensive steering part that could be purchased was the steering rack which was about $1100. However, the bells and whistles went off when bi auto provided the part number 44200-47060. This same part was replaced by rohrich Toyota in pittsburgh on May 14, 2004, at 26,539 miles. Replacement was soon followed with a warranty extension. Similar experiences to mine are documented at www.priusonline.com/viewtopic.php?T=539&highlight=, but as far as I know, no one has reported this second incident two years and 20,000 miles later (the Prius odometer now reads approximately 47,000 miles). Moreover the symptom for the first replacement was a vibration when starting the engine and shifting into reverse. Other individuals have reported the turning stiffness earlier and excessive and uneven tire wear (my rear tires were badly worn at 24,000 miles), but this is the first time for me that this total freezing of the steering wheel in a straight forward position has occurred.

- Pittsburgh, PA, USA

problem #1

Oct 012005

Prius 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 47,000 miles
A year ago, I had my 2002 Toyota Prius shipped to italy while I was on sabbatical. Starting in October (2005), I started reporting to the local Toyota dealer that the steering was stiff when returning the wheel straight ahead on sharp turns or when moving out of tight places where I had parked. I returned to the us for the spring semester, but returned in June, and found the same intermittent problem. My first thought was that there had been some damage to the car during shipping. This past Sunday (July 9, 2006), however, I had a catastrophic incident that might have sent my wife and me off the small country road we were traveling on about a half mile from our home here South of florence in the chianti region. I had been on a steady downhill stretch which then reversed to in an S-curve on an incline. I turned normally through the first half of the S-curve when suddenly the steering wheel froze solid in a straight forward position and I had to jam on the brakes to stop forward motion of the car or go off the side of the road into a ravine. I was probably traveling under 15-20 mph, because the curves were so sharp and I was traveling uphill. To get off the road, I stopped and started the Prius a couple of times to see if this were an electrical-computer fault as the steering system in this car had been replaced at 26,000 miles (more about this later). On about the third try, I was able with tremendous force to move the wheel off center and normal steering was restored. Because there was no adequate shoulder on the road, I returned the car home, experiencing the same steering wheel lock-up more than once, jamming on the brakes to bring the car to a halt, and then wrestling with the steering wheel to the right and the left with the same immense force until it broke free. This was nothing like the previous stiffness I had experienced bringing the wheel back to center from a far left or far right position. (to be continued).

- Pittsburgh, PA, USA

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