really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
11,093 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.

2006 Toyota Avalon transmission problems

transmission problem

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2006 Toyota Avalon Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #35

Mar 202010


  • 23,300 miles


I think I experienced a surge in my 2006 Toyota Avalon. I was not sure but people observing that did not stay and wait for police said my car raced forward after stopped at a light. I ended up steering to the right and hit a tree rather than the car ahead or pedestrians. When the police and tow truck arrived they indicated that my airbag should have gone off, but it did not.

- New Port Richey, FL, USA

problem #34

Mar 142010


  • 58,900 miles
I have a 2006 Toyota Avalon. I took it in a few weeks ago to have the accelerator recall problem "fixed". today (3/14), I was traveling thru a shopping center parking lot at 10 to 12 mph. As I touched the brake, the car started to accelerate, grinding thru the brakes. I pushed it into neutral and jammed the brake. There was a very loud "thunk" and the car stopped and ceased trying to accelerate.

- Kenmore, WA, USA

problem #33

Jan 022007

Avalon 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 500 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Toyota Avalon. The contact was traveling at speeds of 5 mph, attempting to make a left turn when he heard an unusual noise coming in the engine area. Immediately, the vehicle began hesitating and within seconds, resumed normal operation. On a separate occasion while driving in reverse, there was an unusual increase in the rpms. The vehicle then accelerated with a loud sound coming from the engine. The failure would occur whenever the vehicle was in operation. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer on five separate occasions for the identical failures. The dealer was unable to duplicate or diagnose the failures. The failure mileage was 500. Updated 06/04/10. The consumer stated he difficulty starting the vehicle, the engine had a high idle, the transmission would hesitate into gear at 10-15 mph and then catch would catch up and disengage and the drivers door wouldn't open. Updated 10/14/10

- Little Elm , TX, USA

problem #32

Dec 102005


  • 500 miles


I'm an owner of a 2006 Toyota Avalon and I'm curious if the electronic transmission has been investigated as a cause of the accelerator issue? I purchased this car as a new car and within 2 weeks I returned O the dealer to have the transmission checked. At this point it lagged when downshifting or seemed to be continuously searching for the appropriate gear. I was told that he computer had to learn our driving style and the issue would go away. It has never gone away, and it seems to have gotten worse over time. I have 60,000 miles on this car.

- Tacoma, WA, USA

problem #31

Dec 282005


  • 50 miles
The first week I owned the car I noticed a hesitation in the accelerator followed by a lurching forward. Took it to dealer who said it was caused by the drive by wire system and would adjust to my driving in time. No adjustment occurred. I continued to make complaints to no avail until I threatened write to NHTSA. They then said "wait, don't do that. We'll talk to the service manager to see if he has a fix. Within 30 minutes they had recalibrated the engine control module/ECM (sae term: Powertrain control module/PCM). Warranty information was: Op code EG7023; description recalibrate emc (PCM); time 0.9; ofp 89661-#####; T1 26; T2 99. The results were good although I sometimes still feel almost undetectable small surges when I am driving as if I am not really controlling the speed with the accelerator. By the way, I had reported this twice before and when I read through all of the 2006 Avalon reports mine was not there. Are the reports deleted after a period of time?

- Omaha, NE, USA

problem #30

Feb 062010


  • 5,000 miles
When slowing my 2006 Avalon for turn, speed bump, etc. And then accelerating there is often a lag in the transmission engaging and when it does the car lurches. I have complained many times to 2 different dealers about this since the car was new. After a year or so 1 dealer said that Toyota had issued an adjustment procedure which they performed. The problem went away for a while but has returned. In light of the recent recalls and stories about possible electronic problems with these cars I wanted to add my story to the list. I consider this a serious safety issue since the lag in transmission engagement could cause an accident when making a left turn, especially if it worsens. Further, the only way I know about this latest recall is through the news - Toyota has not notified me directly. This makes the third recall on this car - floor mats, vvt-I oil hose and now accelerator! needles to say - I am not happy with my purchase and will seriously try to convince my wife to take our business elsewhere in the future!

- Atlanta, GA, USA

problem #29

Jul 012009


  • 30,000 miles


This is just to pass along to you that I too have experienced that odd sensation of momentary acceleration while driving, but while letting off the accel pedal. On the handful of occassions when it has taken place, I believe I was always driving in heavy stop-and-go freeway traffic. Almost from the first day I leased the car, I have complained to friends that I thought my electonically-controlled transmission was "too smart"--that it thought it knew better how to drive the car than I did. I have a feather touch in my driving style, and I have not liked how the transmission is constantly trying to figure out if it wants to be shifting up or down in heavy traffic. Now, with the recent media coverage, I am wondering if the issue is broader and could be part of the unintended acceleration issue?

- Redlands, CA, USA

problem #28

Jan 102010


  • miles
The transmission poses safety problems because it is very uneven and unpredictable, shifting when you don't expect shifting, at lower and higher speeds and in cruise control.

- Jacksonville, FL, USA

problem #27

Sep 152009


  • miles
I have a 2006 Toyota Avalon XLS and I had problems with sudden acceleration when stopped at a red light with my foot lightly on the break pedal, the engine is running, and the car is in gear (drive). All at once, the car would accelerate forward really fast but stop when I push hard on the break pedal. I was thinking that maybe my foot was slipping from the break and onto the accelerator pedal without me noticing it, however, in light of the recent publicity about the gas pedal problems with Toyota, I am thinking that maybe my foot was not slipping and this piece of information may help in the fault isolation process. It doesn't happen all the time, I would say about once every few months. My reaction on the break pedal is fast and it does stop the car.

- Waterford, VA, USA

problem #26

Dec 142009


  • 40,000 miles
I took my 2006 Avalon in to nalley Toyota for an oil line recall. I asked them if they could also look into the floor mat recall for me. They told me no decision had yet been made on the floor mat issue but went ahead with the oil line recall. I picked my car up that afternoon, drove 15 minutes to my mother's apartment. While slowly guiding my way into a parking place, my car accelerated violently propelling itself up over a curb and through a wooden fence, landing with my back tires on the front curb of the parking place. My braking had no effect and upon landing on the downside of the slope, my engine died. I called Toyota immediately asking what they could have done to cause this to happen since my car had never had this happen before in the 4 years I had it, and yet happened 15 minutes after they had worked on it. They said nothing was done that could have caused this. We complained to the area Toyota rep and an inspector came and look at the car at the nalley repair shop we had it towed to. Toyota says my car checks out fine and any problem was caused by the floor mats /driver. The serviceman did not advise me to remove the floor mats that were in place when they were working on the car. They released it to me with the floor mats in place. Furthermore, I contend that the first thing I check after the sudden acceleration was the location of the floor mat, which was flat against the floor.

- Sandy Springs, GA, USA

problem #25

Nov 012009

Avalon 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 20,000 miles


The transmission hesitates, jumps, and bucks and acceleration is very uneven. When accelerating from 0 mph (I.e. at a red light), the car hesitates, and then at approx. 20 mph, while keeping the gas pedal steady, the RPM's rev up, and the car accelerates wildly. When the transmission shifts at around 20 mph, it feels like it shifts into a gear above what it should be. The car always feels like it is in the wrong gear. This causes problems when accelerating and braking and has caused numerous "close calls." The consumer took the vehicle to the dealer, and they made a minor adjustment to the shifting points in the transmission. Updated 02/17/10.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #24

Sep 102009

Avalon 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,900 miles
Avalon limited 3.2L V6 * automatic transmission * 72,900 miles well, this is my 3rd Toyota, the car was running fine up until Thursday night when I started the car I heard a cranky fan like noise, I did not know what it was after I drove shopping and came back after 2-3 miles and parked the car on my driveway in the dark. Next morning when I pulled my car out of the driveway the noise continued and I saw a pool of engine oil all over, I called the dealer immediately and surprisingly they offered to repair the car the same day (same day appointments-never happened before even for just oil changes) after taking a look they said the oil line needs to be fixed and cost would be $450 for a half days work. I called back the evening and was told now they called Toyota as they don't know what was wrong but have not heard from Toyota so I wont get my car up until after labor day weekend- (had to get a rental for a week) next week, they told be the gear shaft cracked and gaskets need replacement and a 16 hrs job and would cost approx $6000 to repair "but Toyota will cover 50%" even though I am out of 60,000 miles warranty. I did some research and found this is a manufacturer defect. I walked in to dealer to see my car and the mechanic showed me the broken part and told me Toyota has since redesigned this part so it does not break and cause sudden oil leaks- once the new part is replaced I should not expect more similar problems- I am keeping my fingers crossed. I called Toyota and they made a note of my problem but said I have to get the number of the Toyota regional manager from the dealer who said he cannot let me talk directly due to" business relationship with him". I told them its not fair for the customers to pay for the manufacturing faults of Toyota. Finally the "hidden" Toyota regional manager offered to settle for paying 2/3 rd for my car's repair. I am concerned about others driving the Avalon and a big cover-up by Toyota.

- Caledonia, IL, USA

problem #23

Apr 172006


  • 17 miles
Transmission hesitates excessively when automatically downshifting at speeds below 10 mph. This has happened every day and every downshift from the first day of ownership. Terrible condition that no one at Toyota is willing to admit or fix. Wtf?

- Madison, CT, USA

problem #22

Mar 102009


  • 34,500 miles
2006 Toyota Avalon transmission hesitates at 0-35 mph, especially in stop and go traffic. It has nearly caused accidents. I need help because Toyota is not acknowledging this problem. This is a big safety issue.

- Savannah , GA, USA

problem #21

May 072007


  • miles
Whenever I attempt to accelerate, such as entering a highway from an on ramp the transmission will hesitate for a few seconds before speeding up. I understand other owners have also complained and Toyota made corrections could not find it in your database.

- Jackson Heights, NY, USA

problem #20

Mar 062008

Avalon 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 23,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Toyota Avalon. When depressing the accelerator pedal from a dead stop, the engine idles and the vehicle does not respond. The contact took the vehicle to the dealer and was informed that the failure was possibly due to the emission control. When the contact took the vehicle to a different Toyota dealer, they stated that the failure may be due to the transmission. The failure does not occur when traveling uphill. The current and failure mileages were 23,000. Updated 03-25-08 the consumer stated at low speeds the engine revs and after informing the dealer he was informing NHTSA the dealer found a fix for the defect. The consumer stated still shifts unevenly. Updated 03/25/08

- Omaha, NE, USA

problem #19

Sep 012006

Avalon 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 6,000 miles
The transmission acts erratically at low speeds. If I am rolling through a stop sign or just in traffics at 5-10 mph the transmission will "hunt" for a gear. Sometimes it is a hesitation and sometimes it jerks into gear, depends on how much trottle you apply. If I am stop turn right on red, have plenty of time to make a turn before an approaching car arrives, if the transmission is hunting for a gear, I have no control of the car. It might be only for 1 or 2 seconds, but it is dangerous. Repeated service trips, service manangers and even district manager has failed to get anyones' attention. Check out this web site, here are 44 people with similar problems:fourwheeldrift.wordpress.com/2007/01/16/Toyota-Avalon-transmission-problems-expose-Toyota-problem-reporting-problems/

- Ft Wright, KY, USA

problem #18

Oct 052006

Avalon 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
I bought a 2006 Toyota Avalon in Sept. '06. There is a serious problem with the transmission. At slow speeds the transmission slips. If I am slowing almost to a stop and then starting up again the transmission does not engage, the engine revs up, and then the car lurches forward as the transmission finally engages. We have almost been rear ended when another car is following close and thinks that I am going to move forward but can't because the transmission does not engage. I have almost had an accident because the car lurches forward after the trans slips. I also have to wait for a very large gap in traffic if I'm crossing a lane to make a left turn as I never know if the transmission will slip leaving me in the on-coming lane of traffic. We have had this lurching and slipping incident approximately 60% of the time. On two occasions when reaching speeds that would be shifting from 2nd to 3rd a very loud banging noise and lurching occurred. Unfortunately, on two visits to the dealer I was not able to recreate the problem.

- Raceland, LA, USA

problem #17

Oct 152007

Avalon 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 9,988 miles
When entering traffic from the on ramp and with plenty of time under normal conditions my Toyota Avalon, upon acceleration the engine actually cut out I mean with a serious hesitation that I could not respond to in time. The auto quickly approaching my rear veered into the next lane causing the third car to run off on the shoulder of the road. This is indeed a highly safety problem. I escaped without a scratch to myself or car. This has happened many times before but not to this extent. I took my car back to thompsons Toyota in placerville ca 3 times for the same problem and each time they tell me they can't find anything wrong with the acceleration. I have about 10,000 miles on the car now but the problem surfaced less than a week after I bought it. What are my options I need the car and I must drive this safety affected product. The car is ok after you get to 60 mph. On acceleration from a stop position a 4 cyl. Corolla and Honda can perform better, in fact I have a Tacoma Toyota 4 cyl 1999 with 100,000 mile that also accelerates better than my Avalon.

- Cameron Park, CA, USA

problem #16

Sep 222007

Avalon 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 21,393 miles
I was driving slowly around a rotary, and took my foot off accelerator to drift a bit to allow a preceding car to enter. When I pressed the gas pedal gently, there was a sudden violent kick which frightened both me and my wife. (I believe the transmission had shifted in low, but it was as if we had been hit in the rear with a large slapping hand!) I had to react quickly to avoid being driven into the car ahead by this sudden small burst of speed. An accident could easily have otherwise taken place. The transmission has always been erratic at times since we purchased the car, but this was the worst thing that has happened. I have had the latest computer upgrade on this problem installed, and it was within 1 day after that this took place. I had read all of the NHTSA safety reports on this car, and there have been many similar. In my mind there is a serious safety problem which needs addressing. (a similar but much less violent series of incidents have occurred when in cruise control going somewhat uphill, when it downshifts and the car speeds up noticeably and in some cases so much so that I have to take it out of cruise for a bit) such unpredictability makes both my wife and I feel unsafe in this car at those times.

- Brewster, MA, USA

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