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10.0

really awful
Crashes / Fires:
9 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
4 / 1
Average Mileage:
12,720 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.

2009 Toyota Prius brakes problems

brakes problem

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2009 Toyota Prius Owner Comments (Page 1 of 4)

problem #78

Dec 022011

Prius

  • 67,000 miles

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

The contact owns a 2009 Toyota Prius hybrid. The contact stated that while attempting to brake, the traction warning light illuminated and the brake failed to respond with a reduction in engine power. The contact stated that the failure only lasted for a moment before returning to normal function. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure but the vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 67,000. The current mileage was not available.

- Houston , TX, USA

problem #77

Nov 102011

Prius 4-cyl

  • 57,000 miles
One week after being at the dealership for its routine oil/vehicle check-up (55,000-60,000), my red brake light, the yellow warning sign and the ABS lights come up on my dashboard. Towed it back to dealership since the brakes didn't work. They found I needed to change my brake actuator and the solenoid that is stuck. According to what I've read, this should not happen period paragraph but if it does it would be on a much older vehicle with a lot more miles with a stop and go history. According to the customer service representative at the dealership this is a malfunction of the part. When I called Toyota they gave me the go around about being out of warranty. I need help. Also there is a reflective line of light that shines on the driver side of the window from my dashboard.

- Lockhart, TX, USA

problem #76

Jan 112010

Prius 4-cyl

  • 5,000 miles
My 2009 Toyota Prius brakes are faulty. The brakes do not respond properly, especially on slippery roads and on a decline. I took the car into the dealer in 10/2010 and they didn't find anything. I changed all 4 tires on the car in 2/2011 and still experienced the problem. I took the car into the dealer on 5/24/11 and again they did not find anything. They mentioned "ABS system" and implied that I was experiencing the ABS system kicking in. The problem is intermittent, and thus difficult to identify. But, I do notice the problem more frequently when it rains.

- Honolulu, HI, USA

problem #75

Sep 242010

Prius

  • 17,500 miles

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

Braking ability decreases temporarily what appears to be a second or so while driving when applying brakes and going over a bump or small pothole. Decreased braking ability while going over bumps/potholes appears to occur every time. The last time of occurrence it appeared that the car may have accelerated momentarily when initially braking and going over a very shallow small pothole.

- Burke, VA, USA

problem #74

Dec 012009

Prius

  • 8,000 miles
2009 Toyota Prius. When braking the brakes would disengage temporarily causing the car to go faster. I have come real close to rear ending the car in front of me during adverse road conditions. I have driven for 35 years in snow and slick conditions and I know when a car isn't braking right. I always maintain a save distance and this is the only car that has done this. This scarier part is that this happens every time when braking if the road is at all slick. I took it to my local dealer to get it checked. After treating me like a total moron accusing me of not knowing how to drive they said they did do a thorough run through and didn't find any problems.

- Billings, MT, USA

problem #73

Apr 282010

Prius

  • 11,400 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Toyota Prius. While driving at 35 mph approaching an intersection, the contact depressed the brake pedal but when the vehicle went over a bump in the road, it did not slow down. The contact had to apply more pressure to the brakes to slow the vehicle down. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealership but the dealer could not duplicate the failure. The failure occurred again after the contact picked up the vehicle from the dealership. The failure mileage was approximately 11,400. The current mileage was 11,634.

- Milwaukee, WI, USA

problem #72

May 152010

Prius

  • 24,000 miles

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

Inconsistent brake feel on rough or wet surfaces. Though brake pedal is depressed, brakes don't feel like they are engaging properly, it feels like a violent shudder. Recently, on wet pavement I narrowly avoided hitting the car in front of me when I had to stop suddenly and the brakes took much too long to stop the vehicle.

- Wadesville, IN, USA

problem #71

May 162010

Prius

  • 6,000 miles
2009 Prius model1220 a 2 experiences where car seemed to "surge" when brakes applied in traffic. Only lasted seconds but disconcerting. ABS did engage initially (felt pulsing). Took car to dealership 5/17 after first episode. Nothing found wrong; tech could not duplicate problem. Had second experience 5/21.

- Greer, SC, USA

problem #70

Apr 152010

Prius

  • 31,000 miles
When braking on a bumpy surface, the car brakes seem to disengage for a second and the car shoots forward. The last time this happened I was going down a hill at an intersection and the car went around the corner much faster than I would have liked.

- East Haddam, CT, USA

problem #69

Jul 012009

Prius

  • 13,000 miles
2009 Prius, on three occasions I experienced a slight hesitation in the braking of this car. I emailed Toyota about the problem on 2/15/2010, and bib not receive a answer until 5/10/2010. I made an appointment with the local dealership before I received their answer on 5/10. The local dealer said they did not find a problem or any brake error on the computer. Why should it take so long to answer my email and I still have no solution to my braking troubles.

- Saint Gabriel , LA, USA

problem #68

Apr 302010

Prius

  • 31,500 miles

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

I depressed the brake pedal suddenly going about 35 mph to avoid a car stopped in front of me. The brake didn't "catch" immediately, delaying stopping time and forcing me to swerve off the road to avoid a collision. The brake problem has occurred before, approx. Once a week. The dealer told me its due to the transition between battery and gas engine and there's no remedy.

- Ann Arbor, MI, USA

problem #67

Apr 072010

Prius

  • 9,200 miles
I was moving toward a stop sign and slowing as usual. The road is level and it was dry. Suddenly there seemed to be no braking and the next thing I knew I had been hit by a truck traveling at right angles from my left. I apparently went through the stop sign. I brought the car to a stop safely at the side of the road to check on the truck which had swerved into a fence. The driver of the truck was cut by glass. My car had the bumper and grill torn off and unibody bent. This was a brake failure. Unlike some reports, the road was not rough. This was a low speed failure. Another few feet and my driver's door would have been hit and I could have been seriously injured.

- West Vancouver, 00, USA

problem #66

Feb 182009

Prius 4-cyl

  • 480 miles
S10 appropriate handling re Toyota brake problem fm owner of a 2009 Toyota Prius. Four days after purchasing the vehicle, the consumers wife was heading down a gentle incline toward a traffic light at an intersection shortly after a light snowfall, the street was wet, but there was no ice on the road. As she braked to slow down, she noticed there was no deceleration and continued to press down on the brake pedal to no avail. To avoid crashing into other cars, she veered sharply to the right into a curb and came to a stop. The vehicle sustained extensive damage to the wheel, axle and undercarriage. The vehicle was towed to the dealer and after the inspection, the consumer was informed there was nothing wrong with the vehicle. The dealer implied the consumers wife must have applied the brakes incorrectly and was not accustomed to ABS. A few months later on another wet rainy day, there was a similar incident of brake failure.

- Larchmont, NY, USA

problem #65

Apr 072010

Prius

  • 15,000 miles
2009 Toyota Prius with 15000 miles. When I step on the brake (going less thank 30 mph) they slip for no reason. It was a nice sunny day, temps in the high 70S. I was in the process of making a right turn and the brakes slipped for a few seconds. The yellow light comes on the dash board showing traction control coming on. This happened coming down a small hill to a intersection, it happens with out warning and for no reason, the brakes were just checked and I was told they are ok from the local dealer. It seems to be happening more often.

- Cary, NC, USA

problem #64

Feb 182009

Prius 4-cyl

  • 480 miles
Fax on behalf of re a safety concern related to their 2009 Toyota Prius; respond attn caroline/nyc office. Four days after purchasing the vehicle, the consumers wife was heading down a gentle incline toward a traffic light at an intersection shortly after a light snowfall, the street was wet, but there was no ice on the road. As she braked to slow down, she noticed there was no deceleration and continued to press down on the brake pedal to no avail. To avoid crashing into other cars, she veered sharply to the right into a curb and came to a stop. The vehicle sustained extensive damage to the wheel, axle and undercarriage. The vehicle was towed to the dealer and after the inspection, the consumer was informed there was nothing wrong with the vehicle. The dealer implied the consumers wife must have applied the brakes incorrectly and was not accustomed to ABS. A few months later on another wet rainy day, there was a similar incident of brake failure.

- Larchmont, NY, USA

problem #63

Sep 152009

Prius

  • 5,000 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Toyota Prius. While driving 2 mph in reverse, the contact shifted the vehicle into drive and noticed that the vehicle was still reversing. The vehicle was then shifted back into reverse and then back into drive before the vehicle would drive forward. The failure has occurred on three different occasions the vehicle had not been diagnosed by the dealer. He contact also stated that when pressing the start button the vehicle would not start. The brake light also illuminates on the instrument panel even though the brakes are not engaged. The failure mileage was 5000 and the current mileage was 10000.

- San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #62

May 252009

Prius

  • miles
We rented a 2009 Prius when we were in las vegas. We almost got into a collision in the parking lot of a casino when someone pulled out in front of me all of a sudden. I pressed on the brake pedal as hard as a could and the car did not want to stop. I T was if the pedal was pushing on air. It did not go down as expected and the car barely came to a stop. This happened well before all the recalls with gas pedals sticking and such. I think that the sudden application of the brake pedal might of locked up the cylinder. The effect was similar to trying to push on a shock absorber really fast. They lock up and don't move very much. I am no small person 6'-2" and 285 lbs. And I was stomping on it !

- Salinas, CA, USA

problem #61

Mar 092010

Prius

  • 17,000 miles
I have a 2009 Prius that is not a part of the "braking/traction" recall, however I've experienced the same exact problem from day one of driving the vehicle. On wet or uneven surface the traction control kicks in and car seems to lose power in the brake and accelerator for a few seconds and it is not possible to control the vehicle. In other words, you should be able to either brake and prevent a bad situation or accelerate your way out, and neither are possible for a few seconds. This happens nearly every day on the 2009 Prius. Looking at consumer blogs, it is obvious this has been a consistent problem with the Prius, and not just the 2010 model.

- Chester, NJ, USA

problem #60

Mar 092010

Prius

  • 15,000 miles
I have a 2009 Prius. The issue that I experience which is giving me concern is that when I'm pressing on the brake and I pass over a bump or rough terrain or something, all of a sudden, I feel the braking to stop and the car seemingly accelerate or lurch forward and the slippery road indicator signal (sorry I don't know what it's called) will pop up for a second.

- Eastchester, NY, USA

problem #59

Mar 082010

Prius

  • 6,300 miles
I was driving my 2009 Toyota Prius, exiting the staten island expressway and as I approached the intersection the light began to turn yellow and I tried to stop (the road surface was uneven). When I put my foot on the brake the car lurched forward into the intersection so I had to go though the red light and I was lucky that the oncoming traffic hadn't begun to move yet.

- Staten Island, NY, USA

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