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10.0

really awful
Crashes / Fires:
10 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
38,856 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.

2005 Toyota Prius brakes problems

brakes problem

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2005 Toyota Prius Owner Comments (Page 2 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #48

Jan 102010

Prius

  • miles

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

Was driving down a flat hartford, ct street at around 20 mph and began to brake as approached intersection at an avenue with stop sign. When compressing brake absolutely no response came and the car continued to go as if it was coasting. Went straight through the intersection--fortunately it was late and no traffic was present. Happened again at the next intersection, stopped by bumping into curb.. thought nothing of it at the time, it had started snowing and I figured it must be some black ice. But given all the Toyota brake problems reported, and thinking about the fact that no ABS signal ever came up, and it didn't feel as though ABS was "pumping" the brakes it seems like this could be consistent with the other reports of Prius brake failures.

- Redding, CT, USA

problem #47

Feb 162010

Prius

  • 47,800 miles
My 2005 Toyota Prius brakes didn't engage when I pressed on them in stop and go traffic. I was behind a utility truck with a concrete post hanging about 10 feet off the back of it (properly marked), and I gave myself room behind the truck and was aware of the pole hanging off of the truck. Traffic started moving, and I was going between 5-15mph, and then the truck braked and I braked but my brakes didn't respond until the concrete pole had come through my windshield and roof, inches from my head. My engine/front of car was not damaged but my insurance adjustor has estimated damages at a minimum of $4,000-$4,500 for the windshield and roof, not including possible dash replacement from the shattered glass in the vehicle. The car was drivable to move off of the road, but failed to turn back on when the tow truck arrived. I have reported this incident to Toyota and am waiting for a case manager to get in touch with me. I was miraculously not cut, maimed, or decapitated, but have sustained shoulder, back, neck, and arm injuries and am seeing a chiropractor and awaiting X-ray results. I also have bruising from my knee hitting the dash board. My mileage is approximate based on an oil change receipt I found from last month.

- Orlando, FL, USA

problem #46

Jan 202010

Prius

  • 51,000 miles
My 2005 Toyota Prius frequently experiences brake failure while braking on bumpy pavement or rough terrain. The car appears to lurch forward for one or two seconds. I described the problem to bay ridge Toyota on several occasions while having the car serviced. They reassured me that the brakes were working normally, and this phenomenon was supposed to happen with ABS brakes. Since I was told this was "normal", no repair was offered me. I have had one relatively minor crash because of this defect, resulting in damage to the hood of the car, but fortunately no injuries. But this problem has been there since I first took delivery of the car.

- Brooklyn, NY, USA

problem #45

May 302005

Prius

  • 1,000 miles

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

My 2005 Toyota Prius' braking system acts the same way as the 2010's with the recall. When approaching a stop, with the brakes depressed, if you hit a bump in the road the brakes disengage.

- Evergreen, CO, USA

problem #44

Jan 282010

Prius

  • miles
I have a 2005 Prius and have been experiencing temporary brake failures since the first winter in 2005, often on rainy or snowy days, driving down hill while trying to stop at the bottom of the hill at a stop sign. Instead of responding to the brake, the car will appear to temporarily surge forward. I have had 4 near-misses, twice with the car coming into the middle of busy street and would have gotten into serious accidents had there been oncoming traffic. I have brought the car into the dealership 4 times, each time being told that the car is performing to spec, and hybrids take longer to brake. I do not buy this argument since it does not consistently behave this way, and if the brake cannot be engaged in time, then the design of the brake system is defective to begin with. Performing to specification brings our families no comfort when we lie dead at the bottom of the hill. This same problem is being investigated and addressed in the 2010 Prius model. It's obvious that Toyota will continue to refuse acknowledging and addressing this fatal defect until NHTSA pressures them to. Please broaden the Prius brake failure investigation to include gen 2 Prius also, from years 2004 through 2009. A quick google will demonstrate how wide-spread this problem has been among many unhappy Prius owners.

- Basking Ridge, NJ, USA

problem #43

Jan 282010

Prius

  • miles
I have a 2005 Prius and have been experiencing temporary brake failures since the first winter in 2005, often on rainy or snowy days, driving down hill while trying to stop at the bottom of the hill at a stop sign. I have had 4 near-misses, twice with the car coming into the middle of busy street and would have gotten into serious accidents had there been oncoming traffic. I have brought the car into the dealership 4 times, each time being told that the car is performing to spec, and hybrids take longer to brake. I do not buy this argument since it does not consistently behave this way, and if the brake cannot be engaged in time, then the design of the brake system is defective to begin with. Performing to specification brings our families no comfort when we lie dead at the bottom of the hill. This same problem is being investigated and addressed in the 2010 Prius model. It's obvious that Toyota will continue to refuse acknowledging and addressing this fatal defect until NHTSA pressures them to. Please broaden the Prius brake failure investigation to include gen 2 Prius also, from years 2004 through 2009. A quick google will demonstrate how wide-spread this problem has been among many unhappy Prius owners.

- Basking Ridge, NJ, USA

problem #42

Feb 132010

Prius

  • 69,700 miles

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

If the car drives over an unlevel surface (e.g. steel plate, manhole cover, transition from asphalt to cement road) and the brakes are applied, the car accelerates momentarily. This does not occur on a consistent basis, but is more random. I have repeatedly brought this to the attention of the dealer (russel Toyota in baltimore md 21228) who keeps saying this is normal and expected for priuses. I have repeatedly told them that this is not normal. When I hit the brakes in my other cars, it never accelerates. They have advised that I contact Toyota, but have requested that I not report this to NHTSA.

- Baltimore, MD, USA

problem #41

Sep 102009

Prius

  • miles
After changing lanes from the left right lane to the left lane near downtown los angeles, a car suddenly stopped on a yellow light. I quickly hit the brakes which seemed to slowly engage and was hit the car from behind.

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #40

Jan 102009

Prius

  • miles
After accelerating from a red light behind a van, the van abruptly stopped. I hit the brakes in an attempt to stop. The brakes did not enable right away and the car I was driving rear-ended the van.

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #39

May 012005

Prius

  • 1 miles
Easily replicated, unexpected brake release on 2005 Toyota Prius. 1) drive over rough part of road, or slick spot 2) apply brakes 3) no response from brakes for a second or so.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #38

Jan 242010

Prius

  • miles

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

My 2005 model Prius lost brake momentarily and accelerated on a bumpy stretch of road. It happens always I pass over the same stretch just on a stop signal. It stopped very close to the other vehicle in front after regaining the brake luckily avoiding accident. This is the same problem reported on the 2010 Prius and is being recalled.

- Ansonia, CT, USA

problem #37

Dec 202009

Prius

  • miles
I have a 2005 and 2010 Prius. I have noticed a sense of"surge" when braking slowly over irregular pavement with both cars. I always just considered it a quirk of the car. There is absolutely no question in my mind that this braking problem is at least present in the 2005 priuses. I have not had any accidents relating to this. Nothing yet has been done to correct this.

- Shorewood, WI, USA

problem #36

Feb 092010

Prius

  • miles
We have a 2005 Prius hybrid. It has, ever since we purchased it, occasionally accelerated when we have put on brakes. It stops after a second or two, and has never caused an accident, though it is scary when it happens. I believe the only recall that applies to this model year is the floor mat problem, which is not the issue. What I've read is that the older Prius's don't have the braking/acceleration problem. But ours certainly does. We love the car otherwise, but would like to know if there is some action we should take regarding this, and if other people have reported it.

- Bremen, ME, USA

problem #35

Oct 202009

Prius

  • 100 miles
I have a 2005 Toyota Prius I have the same braking issue that the 2010 Prius has with braking on uneven surfaces and hitting pot holds my brakes have memory loss they hit the uneven surface the car continues to move, it feels like it gets air borne also when the weather is wet the brakes lock up, I barely touch them then brakes lock throwing everything forward. I have taken my car into the dealership for brake issues the last time was about 10/09 they found no trouble, both problem are current issues. The dealership continues to tell me there is no problem with the brakes.

- Augusta, MI, USA

problem #34

Jun 152009

Prius

  • 51,000 miles
I was sitting at a stop light waiting for it to turn green when my brake pedal suddenly went all the way to the floor. I only had a few blocks to get to my destination and the brakes still worked if I pushed on them really hard. I got it parked and left it for about 4 hours and when I started it back up they worked fine again. It only happened once. I have ABS brakes.

- East Wenatchee, WA, USA

problem #33

Jan 232010

Prius

  • 2,500 miles
2005 Prius that has the same braking issues that the 2010 Prius is being recalled for. The brakes momentarily fail while slowing down and hitting rough or slick road spots. This behavior has occurred many times since I first purchased my Prius.

- Indian Trail, NC, USA

problem #32

May 012006

Prius

  • miles
My 2005 Toyota Prius brakes failed when I tried to stop at a stop light. I didn't realize it was red until I was very close to it, so I "slammed" on the brakes. I had my foot all the way down on the pedal and it was like the brakes released. Less than 2 weeks later, my husband was driving the Prius and traffic infront of us stopped very quickly. The same thing happened to him, the brakes released when he had the brake pedal all the way down. Again this was an "extreme" braking situation. I took the Prius to darcars in frederick, md, where I bought it, to report the problem and they said that it did not happen. They said if anything went wrong it would be recorded in the software of the car and it wasn't so that meant that nothing was wrong with the car. I then traded the car in for a rav4 because I wasn't going to drive a car that had unreliable brakes.

- Brunswick, MD, USA

problem #31

Jul 182008

Prius

  • 55,000 miles
My 2005 Toyota Prius brakes failed totally while driving. When I touched the brake pedal the brakes locked hard, and the smell of the brake bands was high. I slowed to 20 mph and went to tonio divion Toyota in riverdale Utah. The drive train warranty had not expired, but they said that the brakes were not a part of the drive train. The electronic board failed and was replaced at a cost of $985.87. If this qualifies on a Prius recall can I get any money back?

- North Ogden, UT, USA

problem #30

Jun 012005

Prius

  • 1,000 miles
I have a 2005 (early 2nd generation) Prius and I experienced the latest reported "design flaw" in the braking system from day 1 in 2005. The best description I've heard of it is "inconsistent braking over rough surfaces". that is, when driving over a pothole or bump when applying the (regenerative) brakes, the bump seems to push back, momentarily disengaging the brakes. The effect is at best, unnerving, and at worst, scary, depending on what you're trying to do when it happens (ie, slowing vs trying to stop). I brought this experience to the attention of my dealer service personnel a couple times over the last several years and was met with the equivalent of blank stares and the sound of crickets. Bottom line, this is not a new problem in 2010 model Prius only.

- Easton, PA, USA

problem #29

Jul 112009

Prius

  • 43,580 miles
I have a 2005 Prius that has experienced brake issues including surging forward when brake is depressed. I brought this to the attention of my dealer and was told this is normal. It doesn't happen all the time but is a bit scary. I plan to bring it up to the dealer again when I go for my 45,000 mile tune up, probably next week.

- Greenville, SC, USA

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