really awful
Crashes / Fires:
10 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
4 / 0
Average Mileage:
38,302 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 Avalon engine problems

engine problem

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2008 Toyota Avalon Owner Comments (Page 2 of 2)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #17

Feb 252010


  • 5,000 miles


2008 Toyota Avalon was recalled to replace a gas pedal. The car was taken in to the Toyota dealer for the said repair. It took 4 hours. A few days later the car was in reverse and was slowly backing out of a residential carport when it accelerated on its own and the car did about 3 loops around the garage area of the home causing damage to the car, benches, tree, bushes, lamp post, etc. This happened after the recalled defect was repaired. Owner of vehicle put in claim to her own insurance company, put in a call to the 800 Toyota number and had car towed to where she purchased the car. Everyone seems concerned, but only wants to repair the damage to the car rather than get to the root of the problem. We thought Toyota had the fix, but apparently not since accelerating and going out of control on an accelerated pace.

- Atlanta, GA, USA

problem #16

Dec 082008

Avalon 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 25 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Toyota Avalon. While driving 10 mph and slowing down, the vehicle surged forward and accelerated on its own. She had to apply extreme pressure to the brake pedal in order to stop the vehicle. The vehicle was taken to the dealer 8 times where they stated that nothing was wrong with the vehicle and that it was normal. The accelerator pedal was previously repaired; however, the failure continued to occur. The failure has occurred since the vehicle was purchased brand new. The failure mileage was 25 and the current mileage was 5500. Updated 04/01/10. Updated 05/13/10

- Bradenton, FL, USA

problem #15

Feb 182010


  • 70,084 miles
Toyota Avalon cruise control safety problem. After several experiences with unexpected rapid acceleration I took the car to the Toyota dealership in O'fallon, Illinois. What I discovered is that the laser cruise control system adjusts on the cruise control level in 5 mph increments up or down. However, if you tap the lever up more than once it will increase the speed by 5, 10, 15, 20 mph. More importantly, if you hold the cruise level for more than a few seconds, the cruise setting continues to increment and in just a few seconds you may have unknowingly increased the setting for the cruise by 20 or 25 mph. This is very dangerous since older models of most cars, including Toyota, just increment your speed by a few M.P.H. as you hold the cruise control level up to get to the desired cruising speed. Most importantly, the owners manual is inaccurate and does not describe how the resetting of the cruise speed actually works. In my opinion the cruise control level should not be allowed to increase your set cruising speed by 20 or 30 mph by lifting up the cruise level or a few seconds. I have experienced sudden rapid acceleration several times in highway driving and had to slam on my brakes to avoid an accident. My guess is that a lot of the complaints about the Toyota prius in the press recently result from the same condition with the owners not informed as to how the cruise adjustments work and the manuals are probably inaccurate or incomplete.

- Edwardsville, IL, USA

problem #14

Feb 192010


  • miles


Toyota's handling of recall. I own one of the recalled vehicles but have received no communication from either Toyota or the dealer on the recalls.

- Parker, CO, USA

problem #13

Aug 132009


  • 5,278 miles
I have a 2008 Toyota Avalon that I had only 4 months prior to the accident. The car appeared to be in excellent condition until my husband took it to the delta sonic carwash to have it clean. As he was coming out of the car wash, he shift from neutral to drive and the accelerator failed, sticking in full throttle, causing him to lose control of the vehicle. To avoid collision with other vehicles coming out of the gas station, which is part of the business, and hitting pedestrians and the gas pumps, he steered the car hitting a pole, going over embankment, the sidewalk and into ongoing traffic in the opposite direction. The car came to a stop two business down from where the accident originated. Damages was done to all 4 tireswith bent rims, the front right and left bumper and grille, the hood, the lamp ground with the head light knocked out. The driver's side mirror was hanging down. The exhaust system (muffler, tailpipes) were damaged. The rear fender and bumper was damaged. The battery, oil pan, rear engine cradle cushion pipes were replaced. At the time, we thought it was something that he did, but we now since have found that Toyota has had a problem with the accelerator pedal sticking in full throttle and have asked for a recall. The total damage was to a sum of $12,226.39. The insurance and repair company have fixed the car at our expense and the old or replacement parts are no longer available to my knowledge. I have only photos of the car in the damaged state. I did go to the Toyota dealership that I purchased the car from and they plan to start repairs Feb. 15. 2010. My concerns is how do I get Toyota to honor my request for a car replacement because my car has been devalued because of the accident and is now part of the car fax report. I run the risk of having other problems. If not replace the car, provide me with free maintenance for the life of the car and repay me for out of pocket expenses due to the failed accelerator.

- Glenwood, IL, USA

problem #12

Oct 012008


  • 1,795 miles
Regarding Toyota aoa recall: I experienced the acceleration problem with my Avalon on Oct 1, 2008 and do not feel the latest corrective action of a reinforcement bar will address the problem. I brought my vehicle into darcars 355 Toyota on Oct 2, 2008 and provided a detailed description of the incident. Toyota did not follow up with me. When Toyota initially announced the acceleration problem was due to floormats, I again notified my dealer service team that my floormats were anchored and that was not the problem- Toyota again did not follow up with me. I went to the silver spring darcars service group for the aoa recall and spoke to the service manager regarding the steel bar reinforcement action and explained why I did not feel this would address the problem. Toyota is not listening and I do not want to see anyone else die due to this issue. Please have the lead investigator for the Toyota acceleration recall call me.

- Silver Spring, MD, USA

problem #11

Jul 172009


  • 20,000 miles


I was driving my 2008 Toyota Avalon in traffic North of houston and floored it to get on an exit ramp in front of another car. When I took my foot off the accelerator the engine continued to run at high revs and I had to push hard on the brake to keep the car from continuing to accelerate while going up a steep ramp. After about 3 seconds the revs dropped and everything continued as normal. This happened on July 17, 2009. Then, in December of 2009 I was driving on a side street when a truck ran a stop sign and was going to hit me. I floored it to get out of the way and again the car continued to accelerate after I took my foot off the gas. I remembered hearing a report about the potential of floor mats causing the pedal to stick so I hit the brakes, put the car in neutral and reached down and pulled on the floor mat. The out of control acceleration again lasted about 3 to 4 seconds. I don't know if the floor mat was causing it to stick or not. I had a rubber mat on top of the mat that I bought with the car that hooks into the floor board. I don't think that mat ever interfered with the pedal. I looked at it closely and it does not seem possible. But I took it out anyway. I have a 2007 Toyota Tundra crew cab and this has never happened to it but I have never floored that truck either. The car had about 20,000 miles on it when it happened the first time and about 24,000 the second time.

- Lake Jackson, TX, USA

problem #10

Jan 202010


  • 33,300 miles
On 01-20-10, this customer states after using cruise control at approx 70 mph and coming up on some other vehicles, applying the brake to begin slowing down. Once the road was clear, I reused the cruise control by pressing the resume switch. The vehicle began to accelerate past 70 mph and continued to about 85 mph before I applied the brake and canceled the resume function. I believe the vehicle would have continued if the brake was not applied. On 02-05-10 fitzgerald Toyota ck the vehicle, no problem found. My veh is a 08 Toyota Avalon.

- Damascus, MD, USA

problem #9

Dec 142009


  • miles
2008 Toyota Avalon - computer defect - cruise control is erratic sometimes working ok other times engaged & not working - suddenly speeds up, error code E2. Auto does not slow down properly. Reported to dealer w/no problem found in 2009. 12/14/09 car dead, dash lights indicate check engine, control system failure, brake, battery failure, towed to dealer. Parts 10 amp etcs fuse/I7.5 amp -dome fuse/7.5 amp and AM2 fuse. (op code-190011 combo a T1/71 T2/99. 1 #00544-24F60-575 truestart battery) labor $92. Thank you!

- Roxboro, NC, USA

problem #8

Jan 032009


  • 12,000 miles
On several occasions, I have experienced a problem with my 2008 Toyota Avalon's accelerator pedal being hard to depress and seemed stuck in some partially depressed position. Until the national press on this issue, I thought it was just me experiencing the problem. I had no idea that this was a problem that had lead to the death of people and that Toyota knew this problem existed. When it was mentioned to my local Toyota dealership service department, I was told it was probably my floor mat causing the problem so I removed the mat; however, I still experienced the problem a few times later. I was beginning to think it was some malfunction in my particular car and did not know how dangerous it was. At this point, nothing has been done to correct this problem. I am awaiting a return phone call from my local Toyota dealership.

- Accokeek, MD, USA

problem #7

Jan 252010


  • 30,000 miles


Laser cruise control malfunctioned without apparent reason, most important problems it has are uncontrollable acceleration and sudden deceleration, which has nearly caused my ramming into a car in front of me and a car behind me crashing into me. These, along with other problems in the system, occur every time it is engaged. When first presented to the dealer in phone conversation was told it was a psychological reaction to news reports and given an 800 number to a recorded message telling me if I have a problem stop my car and report it to my dealer. I then went to the dealer and was then treated with disbelief. Their initial solution was denial that there is a problem. After demanding a mechanic test drive the car, the technician conceded the problem is exactly as I described. I was then told that their in shop diagnostic test showed there was no problem with the laser cruise. And when I questioned this was incredibly asked if I didn't believe technology when their own mechanic verified that in reality the system was not working during the road test.then they decided to take another tactic. There is a 1/2 inch ding in the front bumper of my car that is the result of my car rolling 5 feet while in neutral and tapping a pole. They decided to blame the malfunction on this minute ding even though I informed them that the malfunction did not correlate with the time of the blemish to the car. Now they want to charge me an exorbitant amount, over $3000, to fix this ding, hoping it will deter me from pursuing the issue of the innate flaws in Toyota's laser mechanism. I know this will not resolve the problem but am instructing them to repair the bumper as a means of guaranteeing this is the solution to my laser cruise problem. I will pay to fix my dlcc, not correct a blemish in my bumper. I am letting you know because others are probably being met with the same resistance and someone is going to get seriously hurt or killed. My car is 2008 Avalon limited. Dealer: Toyo of watertown.

- Fall River, MA, USA

problem #6

Jul 062009


  • 3,000 miles
While traveling down main street approaching an intersection without warning my car very suddenly accelerated at a very high speed and crashed into a car in front of me. Driver's side airbag inflated, blocking my vision while my car continued to race forward. I immediately jammed on the brakes, the car swerved forward to the left, crossed main street, and came to a stop in front of a utility pole. Front axel broke, on impact which caused the car to stop. Seat belt and airbag pulled me back against the drivers seat resulted in chest bruising and pain. I was knocked out for a few seconds and came to just as airbag was beginning to deflate. The dashboard slammed into my legs badly bruising both of them. Police and emt were on the scene, and I walked out of the car on my own. My vehicle and the one it crashed into were both total losses. At the time of the crash my car had been driven roughly 3,000 miles. I was taken to the hospital by ambulance, treated and released that same day. Vehicle speed before impact was 20, speed on impact is impossible to determine as car accelerated on its own so quickly and crashed so hard.

- Melrose, MA, USA

problem #5

Dec 152007


  • 305 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Toyota Avalon. She stated that since the vehicle was purchased the vehicle accelerated excessively when the cruise control was engaged at various speeds including 35 mph. The vehicle began to slow down when the brake pedal was engaged. The vehicle will be diagnosed the by dealer. The failure mileage was 305 and the current mileage was 10,400.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #4

Oct 182009


  • 14,500 miles
My complaint is with my 2008 Toyota Avalon. I was turning into a parking lot and took my foot off the accelerator to apply the brakes when my car showed no sign of slowing down. I applied the brakes and came to a stop. I check the accelerator and there was no mat in the area. This was before the publicity of Toyota's problems. When I heard the news I reported the incident to the dealership and was told to remove the mat even though I said it wasn't involved. On a second occasion while on the highway I took my foot off the accelerator only to have the pedal hit the sole of my shoe about a second or two later. That happened three times on a trip from Massachusetts to Connecticut. It happened once on the return trip. It was as if the accelerator pedal was sticking. I intend to report the latest incident to my dealership during my next service appointment. I would report it sooner but it doesn't seem like Toyota is listening.

- Kingston, MA, USA

problem #3

Oct 242009


  • 15,500 miles
While pulling into a marked parking space vehicle suddenly accelerated. It jumped two wheel stoppers, went up a small hill and within a couple of feet of running into a cement building before I could stop it. Very very scary situation. I called germaim Toyota in naples, Florida and had the vehicle taken there. At this point in time, I don't know how they are going to correct the problem.

- Jackson, NJ, USA

problem #2

Dec 222008


  • 2,900 miles
My 2008 Toyota Avalon XL had less than 3,000 miles when I had an accident on December 22, 2008. I was stopped in traffic for 5 to 7 minutes. When I released my foot off of the brake, the car lunged forward several feet and hit the car in front of me. The car has lunged several times before this upon starting in below freezing temperatures. On December 22 the temperature in cincinnati was 21 degrees F. I have had the car checked and the damage repaired. The mechanics said there was no problem detected. There is a problem with my car but they will not acknowledge it.

- Cincinnati, OH, USA

problem #1

Sep 102008


  • 11,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Toyota Avalon. While driving approximately 50 mph, the vehicle spontaneously began accelerating on its own. The contact depressed the brake pedal with maximum force and placed the vehicle into neutral, but it continued to accelerate to 70 mph. He smelled a burning odor and the vehicle began decelerating. There were no warning lights illuminated on the instrument control panel and the cruise control was not engaged. The dealer was unable to duplicate the failure and provide a remedy. The VIN was unknown. The failure and current mileages were 11,000.

- New City, NY, USA

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