Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

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hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
71,975 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.

2007 Toyota Prius body / paint problems

body / paint problem

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2007 Toyota Prius Owner Comments

problem #4

Jul 312015


  • 20,900 miles


The contact owns a 2007 Toyota Prius. The contact stated that the exterior rear hatch handle melted and left a melted rubber residue on her hands. The failure recurred on multiple occasions during warm weather. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 20,900.

- Baltimore, MD, USA

problem #3

Mar 052013

Prius 4-cyl

  • 72,000 miles
Hatchback latch does not respond to smart key and will not open to touch as it is supposed to. This problem has occurred intermittently for about ten months. Also, the rubber latch covering has deteriorated into a soft, sticky black substance that stains my fingers when I try to open the latch. The deterioration problem preceded the hatchback operational problem by four or five months as best I can recall. I was able to tolerate the messy problem but cannot put up with a hatchback that is inoperable because it prevents me from accessing the spare and safety equipment, and makes it impossible to use the cargo area. I think Toyota should notify customers of this defect and provide a free repair.

- Takoma Park, MD, USA

problem #2

May 012012

Prius 4-cyl

  • 75,000 miles
The hatchback release latch of my 2007 Toyota Prius has degraded ("melted" almost). It no longer functions properly, and I am unable to open the back hatch door easily. Sometimes it requires considerable effort to get it open. I am concerned that in the case of an emergency, I will not be able to get the door open. This is a major cause for concern and it is a serious safety hazard.

- Corrales, NM, USA

problem #1

Jul 222013

Prius 4-cyl

  • 120,000 miles
The rubber cover on the hatch release handle (the exterior handle of the rear hatch) on my 2007 Toyota Prius has melted making it difficult to open the rear hatch. I can best describe it as being a viscous black glob like roofing tar. The vehicle's smart key locking system has also been affected by the melted switch. It now takes several seconds to find the sensor due to a loss in sensitivity in the switch, caused by the melting of the rubber cover. I thought that this might be a singular issue, but have read numerous complaints online from other car owners. From a safety perspective, this means you can experience extreme difficulty opening the rear hatch (a life safety access point) to me, this is both a serious life safety issue and a serious quality defect that Toyota is opting to ignore and only fixing on vehicles with extended warranties, since the failure appears to occur at around the 3 year mark (ie after 3 years of exposure to the heat). I think a door handle or hatch handle should be made to last more than 3 years. Thank you for your assistance.

- Burbank, CA, USA

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