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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
23 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
8 / 0
Average Mileage:
21,809 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 brakes problems

brakes problem

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2007 Toyota Prius Owner Comments (Page 5 of 7)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #50

Dec 042009

Prius 4-cyl

  • 34,000 miles


On Friday, December 4, 2009 at about 4:15 pm, I had a sudden acceleration incident with my 2007 Toyota Prius. I had not had any prior difficulty with this vehicle in the approximately 34,000 miles I had driven since I bought it new. However at this time when I tried to back the car about 50 feet backwards into a motel parking spot (actually there were 3 open spots in a row), it responded very abnormally. I started the car, put it in reverse and gently applied pressure to the gas pedal. Instead of creeping backwards at ~5 mph as I had intended, the car "took off" at about 30-40 mph. I stomped on the brakes with both feet and initially didn't slow down. I felt an impact as my car grazed a parked vehicle. My car jumped over the curb at the parking lot edge, passed over some short bushes and entered a culvert. Somehow I was able to turn the car and it carved a 180 degree curve and came to a halt about 75 feet after it passed into the culvert. Fortunately I did make this sharp turn since there is a 4 lane highway on the other side of the culvert. There were no injuries and only slight damage to the other car, but an estimated $7000 of body damage to my car. The police were called as well my insurance company. The owner of the other vehicle was located. My car was towed to a local Toyota dealership. Since that time, the local Toyota regional office sent out a representative who inspected my car and "during a road test no abnormal braking or acceleration problems were found." I have since been in contact with Toyota usa in torrance, ca. I have spoken with a "case representative" who has not been helpful. Finally after 5 or 6 phone calls, I was able to get the address of the legal department. I wrote them a letter on January 20 and have heard nothing from them. I also called and left messages on February 2 and 4. as a physician interested in public health I don't want my family or anyone else to drive this car. My faith in the Toyota company is diminished.

- Rochester, MN, USA

problem #49

May 112008

Prius 4-cyl

  • 40,000 miles
Applied brake while running less than 5 mph in flat parking lot with flat surface road; I was feeling like floating or like earth quake while inside the car. It happened two times within 3 minutes time frame. When my car was about 40K mile (now my car is 75K miles), and only happened two times in the past has not occurred again yet.

- San Jose, CA, USA

problem #48

Jan 212010

Prius 4-cyl

  • 7,400 miles
Brake lockup while driving less than 20 mph on normal flat road (rain).

- San Jose, CA, USA

problem #47

Sep 242009


  • miles


I believe my 2007 Toyota Prius has a problem similar to the recent media reports regarding the braking system in the 2010 Prius. I have on several occasions over the past few years observed a lapse in braking power when going over a bump. A few times, this lapse resulted in my vehicle coming uncomfortably close to the vehicle in front of me.

- Nashville, TN, USA

problem #46

Jan 152010

Prius 4-cyl

  • miles
I am describing a repeating issue with my 2007 Toyota Prius. This failure occurs when I drive over bumpy surfaces, a large pothole, or an area with a dip in the road. Often, when faced with these conditions, the car stutters and lurches and the vehicle stability assist light flashes. At times, the car's slip and stutter seems to last several seconds after hitting the rough patch in the road. While it seems to exacerbate the problem if I am turning or braking, I should point out that I sometimes experience this lurching and stalling sometimes when I am simply driving along at 35 mph and hit a pothole. It often seems to occur in a situation where braking or turning is involved, but it seems more related to the vsa process. I am reporting this failure because I have seen news reports of an investigation of the 2010 Prius model. The description of the brake failure reported in the media are basically the same as mine.

- Wakefield, RI, USA

problem #45

Jan 052010


  • miles
I drive a 2007 model year Prius, manufactured by Toyota. Over the nearly 3 years of ownership - I have experienced, at least 10 times, a seemingly small defect during light braking conditions. What happens is when I tap on the brakes during a slowdown to a traffic light (where I may be slowly pumping the breaks to slow), the traction control light will pop on - and the car will seemingly lurch forward for a second or two, as if it wants to accelerate. The matter always resolves itself - and I don't feel in danger or anything like that. However, it has happened multiple times, and is always accompanied by the traction control light - and the lurching forward I told you about. I do not believe this is the traction control system working - because none of the situations I'm speaking involved conditions where I was losing traction. Being that most of the Prius problems seem to be in the 2010 model, I'm not sure if you've had other complaints about this. I had not felt the need to report this until now - because I feel that perhaps you might want to examine this, especially if you're getting feedback from other drivers of the second generation Prius.

- San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #44

Feb 022010

Prius 4-cyl

  • 43,000 miles


The braking issues that I have experienced for the 2007 Prius within months of buying the vehicle are the same issues that are currently being reported for the 2010 Prius. I have a Prius with traction control. There are two things with the traction control that happen on a regular basis living in St. George, Utah. One is when I come out of a parking lot that has the steep dip for water control the traction control system misfires on dry, clean surfaces and in many cases leaves me dead on the road for a few seconds in which the car will not move at all. This also happens when I drive on roads where there is a drainage lid in the middle of the road, and I am actually not attempting to brake. The second is when I brake. If there is any rough or uneven surfaces, bumps, or dirt roads, I have to anticipate that the braking system will fail and/or I will have to quickly pump the brakes and leave extra braking room. I have not taken the vehicle to Toyota because having had a 1999 Tacoma whose brakes would fail on a regular basis to the point, for which they continually replaced sensors, I sold it after I had it less then one year, I don't expect Toyota to do anything about it. I just drive differently. The speeding out of control, for me, only occurs when I have cruise control on. Many times when I press on the brake the car actually speeds up with a jerk or I will look down at my speed and cruise control will have increased it by 10 or 15 mph.

- Central, UT, USA

problem #43

Feb 012010

Prius 4-cyl

  • miles
My 2007 Prius has the brake problem identified on the 2010 models -- when I go over a pot-hole or bump the brakes "slip." This probably happens once a month and has happened since I purchased the car in the fall of 2007. The brakes grab again as soon as I hit solid road.

- South Burlington, VT, USA

problem #42

Nov 152009


  • miles
On 2 separate events, the brake system in our 2007 Toyota Prius failed. It felt as if there was no brake fluid in the system and the brakes became dangerously spongy and unresponsive. The dealer made two separate fixes to the system.

- Scarsdale, NY, USA

problem #41

Apr 152007


  • 10,000 miles
The contact owns a 2007 Toyota Prius. While driving 25 mph the vehicle accelerated on its own when the brake pedal was engaged. The vehicle towed to the dealer who stated that the brakes were damaged. The entire brake system was repaired under the warranty. The failure recurred 3 months after the vehicle was repaired; however, Toyota advised the contact that they would assume responsibility. The failure mileage was 10000 and the current mileage was 46390.

- Little River, CA, USA

problem #40

Sep 072007


  • miles


2007 Toyota Prius. I noticed brakes slipping or delayed engagement very soon after purchase. When the brake hesitates the slippery road icon always comes on. I took the car into the dealer 3 times within the first 12-18 mos. They kept it overnight and had the tech drive it without the problem occurring for him. Since the warranty expired I have decided to live with the problem. I since purchased new tires which has decreased the frequency of the brake hesitation. Now I fear serious brake failure. I called the dealer dave white of toledo, Ohio today and was told by the service wait for a letter re. The brake and accelerator problems which should arrive in about a month. I am concerned about the safety of my car in the interim. Actions to date have done much to heighten awareness of problems but have done nothing to increase safety in the short term. I hope that the NHTSA will address this issue.

- Rossford, OH, USA

problem #39

Apr 242007


  • 2,500 miles
If you drive over a manhole or pothole while applying brakes, the brakes won't work and the little anti-skid light on the dashboard goes on. You have to wait until after you pass over the pothole before you apply the brakes. Sometimes not possible to do this if you need to stop in a hurry. Contacted my Toyota dealer about this in July 2007 and was told this was normal. "just don't use the brakes until after you pass the pothole." Was what I was told.

- Antelope, CA, USA

problem #38

Feb 012010


  • miles
Obviously there has been a lot of media coverage over the past day or so over the third generation Prius and brake issues. While I have a 2007 Prius (second generation), I can say that my car also suffers from the same issue while braking on an uneven road, going over a bump, etc. (this has happened on dozens of occasions). With my foot on the brake pedal, my cars feels as if it momentarily lurches forward before the brakes once again react. My traction-control light momentarily flashes on my dashboard when this happens. This comment from a poster on your website exactly describes my problem: "when braking, if a pothole or bump in the road is hit, the car seemingly jerks forward/accelerates for a split second." Since my car is not a third generation Prius, I find it interesting that it is suffering from the same problem that apparently only involves the newest model.

- Stamford, CT, USA

problem #37

Sep 302008


  • 200 miles
I own a 2007 Toyota Prius, and the problem now being investigated on the 2010 models where the brakes fail momentarily when driving over a pothole or bumpy road is a very common occurrence for me, and has been since we bought the vehicle in September of 2008.

- Ithaca, NY, USA

problem #36

Dec 212009


  • 55,000 miles
I won a 2007 Toyota Prius. I had two accidents in last 4 months timeframe (both incidents were filed). In both the cases, I have observed that there has been braking issue. Especially during snow/icy conditions, the car did not stop. When braking, if there is little ice I would expect it to stop at normal distance. But it crosses the road until some distance, before it comes to complete stop. The car seemingly jerks forward/accelerates for some time. I am good fan of Prius and it's my 3rd Prius in the family since 2005. Honestly, the braking distance & sliding bothering me recently alot.

- Palatine, IL, USA

problem #35

Jan 302010


  • miles
Loss of control of Prius briefly when braking on icy or uneven conditions. Every time I go over a particular bridge here in the suburbs of philadelphia the problem occurs. Most recently brakes shuddered for about 10 seconds on icy conditions, not like in ABS way but in a way in which I wasn't sure if they were going to engage or not.

- Havertown, PA, USA

problem #34

Feb 032010


  • miles
Please probe 2007 Toyota Prius brakes too. My brakes have felt weak for some time now. I brought it to the repair shop in December 2009 and they said they were fine and were at 50% worn. The repair shop thought I was nuts. They still grind, squeak and feel weak.

- West Chester, PA, USA

problem #33

Aug 032009


  • 10,000 miles
I purchased a 2007 Prius on 8/31/07. Both my wife and I occasionally experience a slight forward surge of the vehicle when the brakes are applied. I had the car inspected on 5/14/08 for this concern and have a Toyota workorder stating the issue and indicating that they could not find a problem. I repeated my concerns on additional service visits (not written up on the workorder and, again, nothing was found. On 8/3/09 I was involved in a minor accident when I failed to completely stop behind a car sitting at a traffic light and struck that car in the rearend. My car required a bumper replacement as the plastic bumper cracked on impact while the other vehicle only experienced scratched paint on it's rear bumper. I am concerned that there is something systemic wrong with the brakes on my car and wanted to report this and, hopefully, hear back as to the number of similar reports that you have received.

- Cleveland Heights, OH, USA

problem #32

Nov 012009


  • 21,000 miles
For the past several months, my 2007 Toyota Prius has experienced the occasional low speed braking problem that has been reported in the news media today. I first noted this when going over railway tracks at low speed while braking. I experienced what felt like a loss of traction briefly, and the anti-lock brake light warning system flashed. This has happened again in low speed braking situations while going over an uneven surface several times, but not constantly. I report this because my Prius is a 2007 model -- not a 2010, which initial news reports indicated were affected. I am the original owner. I notified the dealer (bob bridge Toyota in renton, wa) this morning. I initially did not understand the nature of the problem until I heard the news reports this morning.

- Normandy Park, WA, USA

problem #31

Feb 062009


  • 29,000 miles
I pressed on the brakes in an emergency situation and there was a slight delay between when the brake pedal was depressed and when the brakes grabbed. I ended up striking the car in front of me. I have the license plate of the car I hit etched in my front bumper. 2007 Toyota Prius.

- Santa Ana, CA, USA

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