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hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
81,352 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.

2008 Toyota RAV4 engine problems

engine problem

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2008 Toyota RAV4 Owner Comments (Page 2 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #55

Mar 022015


  • 73,000 miles


Low engine oil light came on at 4200 miles of scheduled 5000 mile oil change. Dipstick checked and no oil was in engine. Two quarts added and brought to dealership for oil consumption test. Car filled with oil driven 1200 miles and brought back. Dealer states approximately 1 quart of oil consumed and it does not qualify for excessive oil consumption correction.

- Norton, MA, USA

problem #54

Jan 012009

RAV4 4-cyl

  • miles
4 cylinder engine excessive oil consumption - between 5000 mile oil changes we are putting in 4 - 5 quarts of oil. There is a well-known piston design fault on this engine which requires the fitting of new pistons and this should become a recall issue not an discretionary matter decided arbitrarily by Toyota and its dealers. We raised this issue with a dealer about 3 years ago and was fobbed off with the usual response like '' it's nothing to worry about'' we intend getting the oil consumption checked again by Toyota but in the meantime please put pressure on Toyota to deal with this matter in a responsible way. Such a serious engine design fault should not result in consumers losing out with a collapse in car value and further problems with oil contamination of the catalytic converter due to burning large quantities of oil.

- Hillsdale, NJ, USA

problem #53

Jul 192014

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 48,000 miles
Vehicle started pinging when going up hills. Checked oil and it didn't even register! had just had oil changed 2 weeks before. Since this time, I have had to add about 5 quarts of oil. Now I'm told Toyota considers using 1 quart per 1,000 driving miles is "normal". the engine could burn up based on this excessive oil consumption leaving the occupants stranded.

- Lacey, WA, USA

problem #52

Mar 012013


  • 85,000 miles


I went to the dealership for my normal oil change in Sept 2013 and was told there was no oil on the dipstick, rav had 85,000 miles at the time. No lights had come on that alerted me to an issue. They noted it on the records and said they would keep an eye on it. I went for my next oil change Nov 2013 and same issue of no oil on dipstick and again no warning lights. They noted it again on paperwork and said we might need to look into why it is using oil. We made a phone call to a friend who is a Toyota mechanic and was told there was a service bulletin issued to the dealerships about oil consumption issues. Dealership did not say anything about this to me either time. We have watched the oil ever since and have to add oil between changes. In January 2015 we received warranty enhancement notification about oil consumption issue. In February we had oil consumption test performed and was told the rav was within normal limits of oil usage. I called Toyota customer service and logged a case. They told me to go back to dealership between 1100-1300 miles and have oil level checked again. It was 1500 miles later before I could get back in to dealership. They noted the rav had used 1 quart of oil in 1500 miles. I am being told that is normal usage and at this time my vehicle will not be included in the "fix". the rav only has 120,000 miles on it.

- Arleta, CA, USA

problem #51

Nov 292013

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 96,000 miles
When starting my car my 4 wheel drive light, engine light, vsc light wouldn't go out. When taken this to my mechanic I was told that the vacuum system. After checking everything, things seemed to be ok. When it happened again I was told that the gas cap was put on to tight. The lights where reset. In January it began to happen again. Took it to a new mechanic, I was to told that the charcoal filter needed to be replaced, which I needed to wait about 10 days for it to come in. Replaced the about 25 miles later lights came back on. New clamps where put on all hoses. 50 miles later lights back on, now code is saying the charcoal canister faulty. Now that needs to be replaced. My mechanic did research, found out that their has been many complaints about this problem. This part cost over 800$ I myself have read other Rav4 owners that this isn't a new problem. How long or how many complaints does it take for someone to do something about this. Their have been times when this has happens the car sputters and really doesn't go anywhere. Does my life have end when my vehicle does this and I get hit from behind. Oh don't even get me started on the amount of oil this car uses. Maybe my engine needs to blow up first. Please finally do something before someone gets hurt. Or is this what needs to happen.

- Aston, PA, USA

problem #50

Mar 232015

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 138,739 miles
Toyota oil consumption test conducted. Usage of ~3/4 qt per 1,200 miles. First noted excessive usage at ~ 95,000 mi. Tested at 138,739 mi. 2.4L 4-cyl DOHC engine.

- Greenvilles, SC, USA

problem #49

Mar 022015

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 70,733 miles


While stopped at a light waiting to turn left the Rav4 engine began to rev and lurched forward with driver's foot still on the brake. Driver put car into neutral while holding down the brake pedal to prevent the car hurtling into the intersection. Driver then turned off the car and put gear shift to park. After 30 seconds restarted the car with foot on brake and the engine began to rev again with car in park. The engine noise was very loud. Car was again turned off. Car was restarted after about 2-3 minutes and engine behaved normally. Owners took car to Toyota dealer within an hour of the incident. Toyota dealership ran diagnostic and manager said driver had foot on the accelerator when it happened which is certainly not true. Dealer would not release a copy of the diagnostic report. Owners have had all recall work done on the vehicle and have done regular maintenance as required in the owner manual.

- Bristow, VA, USA

problem #48

Nov 072014

RAV4 6-cyl

  • 138,000 miles
I first heard knocking noise upon cold start-up. This has now become a chronic noise. When getting truck serviced for another matter the mechanic informed me that the vvt-I bolts were defective and needed to be replaced for a charge of $3500-$5600. He also noted this was expensive because it is a Lexus engine. Upon researching this more I discovered this is the same engine 2gr-fe V6 installed in the Lexus rx350S with same problem. However, this has been a major recall by Toyota for Lexus vehicles but not Toyota. I contacted Toyota but they refuse to address this issue even though this is exact same defect which is a recall for Lexus models. See article // The recall is listed on NHTSA. Once bolts loosen the vvt-I gear housing and sprocket to separate and result in the engine stopping while the vehicle is being driven, increasing the risk of a crash. See article: Toyota recalls various Lexus vehicles with engine bolt problems the bolts could become loose due to abnormal impacts 09/10/2013 | consumeraffairs by [xxx] I cannot understand how these defective bolts under a Toyota body style, but on the same engine are excluded from this major recall. The serious consequences remain the same regardless of body style should bolts loosen during high speeds. I have escalated this complaint to the highest level at Toyota with no results so I am compelled to file an official complaint with your department. We have a toddler on board each day driving this vehicle without funds to repair this problem and are now unable to sell the car. Your attention to this matter is appreciated. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Vancouver, WA, USA

problem #47

Mar 132015

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 84,278 miles
Received a warranty enhancement notification (extended warranty) for the excessive oil consumption. Free fix. What a joke. They tell you to come in for the test, fill your oil to full and tell you to come back in 1200 miles. Twelve hundred miles later you go back your car is at low/add level, they add 1 qt oil and state and I quote "found that vehicle burned 1qt of oil in 1,241 miles. That is ok to Toyota standards". that last line tells it all. If you do the math, at 5000 miles, which they tell you to come in for an oil change, there would be no oil left to change with a 4.8qt engine oil limit. I couldn't believe Toyota has such low standards. We have all Toyota in my household. With the we don't care attitude by Toyota, we will become a Honda household. I expected better, Toyota standards have really deteriorated. is available. Just may buy it to warn potential customers.

- Camarillo, CA, USA

problem #46

Mar 072015

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 78,000 miles
Rav4 2008 limited V4 water pump leaking at 78000 miles. Leaking my $600 money I am looking for user to file class action.

- Sewickley, PA, USA

problem #45

Dec 242012

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 60,000 miles


My VIN number is on their tsb list and they knew their problems and still trying to play games. Toyota is trying everything they can to screw up with consumer. They want you to test the oil consumption even you already tested three times before. They are not answering your phones. Audi already lost their case. Toyota will be the same. This is the first Toyota and also be the last one.

- Sewickley, PA, USA

problem #44

Dec 032014


  • 81,000 miles
Car runs through oil between 5000 recommended oil changes. Have to constantly check if there is enough oil. No leaks, just goes through a lot of oil.

- Camarillo , CA, USA

problem #43

Jun 062012

RAV4 4-cyl

  • miles
There was no accident, however, this inquiry is about the engine oil. My wife bought this vehicle new, the engine is a 4 cylinder (2az-fe). This has been happening for the past two years and it continues. Every 1400 to 2000 miles the check engine light comes on, and when I the engine oil, its always two (2) quarts low. I never see any evidence of oil burning in the exhaust; no oil leaks on the driveway, nothing. It's as if the oil disappears. The dealer won't do anything, they say that it's not a safety issue so they won't investigate. My wife has been taking this vehicle to an independent auto shop and they say that they see this all the time with this particular engine. This shop suggests that we add in ames oil every other oil change (every 3500 to 5000 miles), and that should make the oil changes go from 1400 miles to approximately 3500 miles. This is very frustrating!!! this vehicle shouldn't need oil changes until 7500 miles!! could you please look into this?

- Hayward, CA, USA

problem #42

Oct 082014


  • 74,200 miles
Just learned today that I need a new transmission for a 2008 Rav4 with only 74,000 miles on it. Had the car in for service at 72,000 miles where they did the 70K mi service to include multipoint/floor mat, replaced the water pump, brake fluid flush and "engine minor". I think something is wrong here. My 5 year or 100K prepaid warranty ended in June so no coverage available. Shouldn't a transmission last longer than 70K miles?

- San Jose, CA, USA

problem #41

Sep 252014

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 83,552 miles
The vehicle slows down and the engine shuts off while driving around 65 mph or higher the throttle control is not responding very dangerous.

- Anaheim , CA, USA

problem #40

Jun 022014

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 95,000 miles
A little after its regular scheduled maintenance my 2008 Rav4 started to make an odd noise (rattling) when reaching 40 mph at 1500 RPM. Checked fluids and noticed that engine oil was dry (burnt oil on stick) and black atf. Immediately replaced fluids (engine and ws atf). Took car to dealer and they said they didn't noticed anything unusual. Drove with tech and showed him the noise at specified conditions. He said more tests needed to be done. Up until today they are not sure what the issue may be and suggested a bunch of different "fix" that I will have to pay for myself. Found a tsb online for a similar issue (T-sb-0094-11). Toyota should be held responsible and fix this issue at no cost to users.

- Louisville, KY, USA

problem #39

Jun 252013

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 81,471 miles
Our 2008 Rav4 oil light came on and we had just had our oil changed so we thought the business didn't add enough oil when they did the oil change. We took it back and was told it was an oil consumption problem that this model year has. First we heard about it. We took it to Toyota dealer in omaha and they immediately said we had no warranty for this without even looking at it. Red flag. They then did a test where they did another oil change and we drove it for 1000 miles then took it back. They said we did not have an oil consumption problem. Fast forward to August 2014 and the oil light again came on. The dip stick was dry. We took it again to dealer and was told we did have an oil consumption. He didn't even look at it. My husband was furious since we had been told we didn't have that problem 13 months earlier. We have been told it would take $5000 to $6000 to fix it since it would require a new engine. Since then we have found out a lot of people have had this problem and Toyota refuses to do anything about it even though they put the faulty engines in these vehicles. The are trying to shirk their responsibility because this recall cost a little more. Where does this leave the consumer? if we trade it we just lost $5000 to $6000 in value. If we don't we are stuck with a faulty vehicle. There should be a recall for this oil consumption problem. Obviously this is a problem that came right out of the manufacturing of this vehicle. My husband called Toyota and they just argued with him. No help.

- Omaha, NE, USA

problem #38

Sep 032012


  • 50,000 miles
The 2008 Rav4's seem to have a serious defect with the engines burning a lot of oil due to bad piston rings. This defect is costing Rav4 owners quite a bit of money and Toyota isn't recalling the engines for repair. Toyota should be held reasonable for the design flaws and get these cars fixed right away before something happens to someone.

- Des Moines, WA, USA

problem #37

Jan 102013


  • 70,000 miles
Excessive oil consumption I went for an oil change as I do every 3000 miles and was told there was little oil. They looked for leaks etc. None found. Thought it was a fluke. About 1500 miles in my engine light comes on my brother in law who is a certified mechanic for 30 years and takes care of my car tells me my car is consuming oil and your talking a big job advised me to take it to the dealer to run a consumption test which I did and yes that is what I am told. There is nothing I can do unless I pay to have it fixes which is very costly I was advised to check oil every 1000 miles and fill. Upon research this has been reported by numerous Toyota owners not only on rava4's but other models as well around the 2006/2008 time frame. Toyota admits to problem and fixes in later models but does not do anything to fix a known defect!!!! I have joined every law suit, complaint board, etc. And for this reason will never buy another Toyota.

- Phoenixville, PA, USA

problem #36

Jun 162014

RAV4 6-cyl

  • 71,000 miles
Water pump starting making incredible diesel / mechanical grinding sounds. Coolant leaking from water pump. Water pump bearing overheating - odor clearly discernible from inside vehicle. Checked internet - this is a very common complaint among Rav4 V6 owners - many owners having replaced water pump on this year vehicle at 25,000K miles! dealers charging anywhere from us $325 - $900.

- Palmdale, CA, USA

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