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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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
6 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
7 / 0
Average Mileage:
25,218 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 Sienna engine problems

engine problem

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2009 Toyota Sienna Owner Comments

problem #11

Dec 252014

Sienna 6-cyl

  • 47,500 miles


On 12/25/14 the Toyota Sienna had unexplained acceleration and hit a tree at 31 mph. My wife and son had right side lung contusions. My wife had an open wound from the seat belt. Since she was restrained that well she had a broken left leg and a right clavicle fracture that required surgeries. My wife almost died in delray beach medical center due to blood loss and poor medical attention. We know the seat belt did not work well because the rest of us were able to walk away from the crash. My wife is still suffering and realized from the american council safety lessons that her seat belt did not function correctly and the side bags are dangerous.

- Boca Raton, FL, USA

problem #10

Oct 182010

Sienna 6-cyl

  • 15,523 miles
Geico claim number: [xxx]February 7, 2011 to whom it may concern: Note, this is the second time I'm filing to update my address. On October 18, 2010 my 2009 Toyota Sienna dashboard vsc (variable skid control)/off track and check engine lights illuminated. I took my van in for service immediately. The dealership made repairs that were covered under warranty, and assured me that the van was safe to drive (a copy of the invoice from that service is attached for your reference). On November 24, 2010, the same vsc/off track and check engine lights illuminated again. When I returned to my local dealership for service, I was informed that due to the thanksgiving holiday, the service department did not have availability until November 30, 2010. Service advisor assured me that my vehicle was safe to drive, as long as I stayed in town, and wasn't planning on taking the car on any long trips. However, I never got a chance to return my van to the dealership because on November 29, 2010 it started to make unusually loud noises and accelerated unexpectedly. Naturally, I attempted to stop by braking, but the brakes were not functioning at all. I tried again and again to brake, but to my disappointment the brake pedal did nothing, no matter how much I pumped it. Luckily, I was able to avoid hitting any pedestrians or cars by steering up the curb and into a lamppost. The van continued to accelerate uncontrollably until it finally came to rest on the steps of the county courthouse! information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Encino, CA, USA

problem #9

Aug 112011

Sienna 6-cyl

  • 40,000 miles
We were backing out of a parking place at the hot springs village walmart. The van accelerated on its own, then the brakes failed. No amount of pressure would stop the van. We stopped by hitting a parked car, doing some damage to it. We had the van towed to a body shop to have the exterior repaired. We were afraid to drive it. After being repaired, we had it towed to lander's in little rock where it was pronounced safe to drive. A few weeks later we sold it and bought a 2011 Toyota Sienna van. (an accident report will follow on the 2011 Toyota van VIN#[xxx]) information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Fort Smith, AR, USA

problem #8

Jan 312011


  • 50,000 miles


My wife was pulling into a daycare parking space with our two kids, going 3 mph (according to black box readings) when the vehicle suddenly began accelerating. The vehicle jumped the curb, hit a retaining wall hard enough to throw it backwards and get stuck in a snowbank (luckily), where the vehicle finally stopped. My wife was flooring the brake the whole time, with no effect. We contacted Toyota, who sent out an inspector who inspected the brakes and accelerator. Weeks later we received a letter from Toyota's legal department saying the inspector found nothing wrong with the brakes or accelerator, and since this is not a manufacturer defect, there is nothing further they can do. The Toyota dealership said they follow Toyota's orders, so they cannot help either. We're going to have to sell this as I don't feel safe driving it.

- Saint Paul, MN, USA

problem #7

Jul 292010


  • 19,070 miles
On July 29, 2010 at 5pm my wife parked her car in front my house on colesville road, facing the road approximately 23 feet from the sidewalk and 30 feet from the street. I had been asked by my wife to drive to the airport. We closed the doors, put on the seat belts, put my foot on the brakes and shifted the gear shaft to drive. Then I released the parking brake, the car start rolling slowly by the time I was moving my foot to the gasoline pedal gently, the car kept rolling, the gas pedal failed to accelerate the engine. I put my right foot on the brake, the brake failed completely. I tried to pump the break to stop the car without success. Suddenly, I found my self entering the busy street and cars rushing toward me. Trying to turn right and push the gasoline pedalto keep up with traffic, the car kept rolling slowly and the car never accelerated. "the gas pedal failed to accelerate as there was no gas pedal". until I reached the right lane from the second lane, I shifted the transmission to neutral the car slowed and pushed the parking brake to stop. Then I changing transmission to the parking position. The whole traffic stopped, then I tried again to shift the transmission to drive and pushed the gas pedal which resumed its function and the brake too. When I entered colesville road the traffic was rushing, specially on the first lane where first lane car approaching my car, the driver started honking and swerved drastically around my car to the second and third lane to avoid hitting me. The following cars and the whole traffic stopped until I moved to the first lane and resumed moving. It was a horrible and scary experience with my wife and the two years granddaughter screaming and panicking. I called the dealer, the only advise I got was to get an appointment and look at the car. Tonight I took the car to the dealer.

- Silver Spring, MD, USA

problem #6

Feb 152010


  • miles
We recently bought Toyota Sienna limited 2wd. The van started to accelerate on its own at a lower speed (from 10 to 35 mph). In addition, the van maintains its speed without using a cruise control. Furthermore, when the van is started, the ideal is very high like someone is pushing on the gas. We tried to contact the dealer in hickory, nc; however, nobody has contacted us back to make an appointment.

- Newton, NC, USA

problem #5

Nov 172009


  • miles


Our 2009 Sienna may have had a sudden acceleration problem. When the car was put into reverse, a sudden acceleration sent it down our driveway. Situation: Pulling into the carport, which involves a 90 degree turn at the top of a short (10M) steep narrow walled easement, the driver of the Sienna could not make the turn in one motion and was required to put the Sienna in reverse at which time the minivan suddenly accelerated, squealing its wheels. The result was a 5M careen down the driveway. The result was about $4,000 body damage, but no injury to the driver or my 2yr old daughter - although all were shaken. We have since got rid of the car - traded it for a 2010 highlander.

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #4

Nov 032009


  • 9,700 miles
In November 2009 while parking my car in store parking, my foot was on brake my car accelerated, suddenly jumped on the 1 foot high footpath and crashed into the store injuring few people. Nothing worked even brakes jammed. I contacted the Toyota and they sent me letter after 30 days that they have found nothing and Toyota dealer was not ready to take any part in resolving the problem. They refused to give me rental vehicle and I had to pay one month of rental car as well. I am scared to drive this vehicle now. I would like to file a complain to take immediate action in this regards. Thank you

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #3

Apr 182009


  • 5,000 miles
In April 2009 the accelerator stuck on my 2009 Toyota Sienna van. The dealer failed to replicate the problem and neither the dealer nor Toyota has made any progress to resolving. Now I see where a vast number of other Toyota vehicles are similarly plagued and my confidence in the Sienna is further eroded. Please help! tw*

- Mount Dora, FL, USA

problem #2

Jun 172009


  • 85,000 miles
Attempted to accelerate to pass a large truck and vehicle started accelerating out of control. Tried to brake and that didn't work. Applied foot brake and that didn't work. Speed may have increased to approx 70-80 mph. Speedometer show approx 45 mph. Unable to steer vehicle. It was as if the motor had stopped and I had no power steering. After hitting 2-3 vehicles and then the right lane bridge wall the front tire and steering assembly bent inward nd that caused the van to stop. That god that noone was injured but something is seriously wrong. I've seen several complaints of sudden acceleration in Sienna vans and this need much attention.

- Simpsonville, SC, USA

problem #1

Apr 182009


  • 5,600 miles
On an early Saturday April 18, 2009 trip to the airport the cruise control stuck while accelerating and would not disengage by pressing the brake pedal or by pulling the cruise control lever (located on the steering column) towards the driver. I had just gone through an automatic tollgate in the far left lane and began accelerating (and probably hit the 'resume' feature of the cruise control lever) in order to get immediately over to the far right lane to exit. Within seconds I was up to an adequate speed and touched the brake. The car continued accelerating. I pressed the brake more firmly and pulled the cruise control lever towards me. Neither action disengaged the cruise control. I was able to avoid traffic and point the car towards the right shoulder. I then pushed the gear shift into neutral and the car engine slowed down, the car stopped accelerating, and the cruise control disengaged. On my return trip I tried to duplicate the actions which preceded the problem but was not successful. (I have driven the car about 5600 miles and this was the first time this problem has occurred.) the same day I took the car to a large Toyota dealer. They drove the car several miles and did not have the problem occur. So they were not able to find a problem. They said they could only fix a problem if they could experience it. And, they suggested I take the car to the Toyota dealer that sold it to me. Later the same day I did return the car to the Toyota dealer that sold it to me. They were good listeners and kept the car for several days of driving, diagnostics, and phone calls to Toyota. But, in the end they too, could not locate a problem and returned the car to me unchanged. My confidence in this vehicle is greatly diminished. While I was successful in disengaging the accelerating cruise control by putting the car into neutral I do not want to have to depend on that especially in a heavy traffic situation.

- Mount Dora, FL, USA

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