Notes: Beware of the NHTSA complaint data for the 2003 Camry. It is almost certainly misleading.

The problem with NHTSA data for the 2003 Camry is that for months on end, the news media repeatedly told the public that several Toyota models had an unintended acceleration defect, & to go to (the NHTSA's website) to file a complaint.

So, the NHTSA received a disproportionate number of complaints about Toyota unintended acceleration issues because of the national news media attention, to the point where their data is unreliable taken in context with any other vehicle that did not receive national news attention. typically receives more complaints per day about vehicles than the NHTSA does, but the news media did not repeatedly say "go to to report your Camry acceleration problems" like they did about the NHTSA -- so although we have less complaint data than the NHTSA for the 2003 Camry, our data for the Camry is a far more statistically accurate representation of the Camry's reliability than what the NHTSA data shows.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
149 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
51 / 4
Average Mileage:
37,070 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.

2003 Toyota Camry engine problems

engine problem

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2003 Toyota Camry Owner Comments (Page 11 of 12)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #23

Sep 102003

Camry 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


2003 Toyota Camry accelerated as I pulled in driveway, causing damage to my vehicle, my son-inlaw's vehicle, minor damage to house & basketball goal.

- Blytheville, AR, USA

problem #22

Oct 012003

Camry 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 3,700 miles
Consumer stated the vehicle experienced sudden acceleration when shifting from park TO1 reverse and the vehicle collided with fuel pump guard rail. Drove though it and crashed into the rear of a vehicle.

- Girard, PA, USA

problem #21

Mar 072004

Camry 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 4,434 miles
When applying the brake pedal it would proceed to the floor and the vehicle would continued to accelerate. The vehicle surged forward and crashed into a building. The consumer stated the brakes were soft. Updated 7/5/12 the consumer stated after braking and coming to a complete stop, he used the emergency brake before putting the gear in park. Updated 07/12/12

- Clinton, IA, USA

problem #20

Mar 112004

(reported on)


  • miles


When depressing the brakes to park vehicle lunged forward without warning. The vehicle jumped the curb and went into bushes.

- Ellicott City, MD, USA

problem #19

Mar 102004


  • miles
While applying the brakes at a toll booth brake pedal went to the floor and vehicle suddenly accelerated. As a result, consumer's vehicle rear end another vehicle. Upon impact, both air bags did not deploy. Driver and passenger sustained head and back injuries, and were transported by ambulance to the hospital. Vehicle was totaled.

- Whiting, NJ, USA

problem #18

Mar 042004

Camry 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 13,000 miles
Consumer pulled into a parking spot and stopped and vehicle suddenly surged forward on a concrete curb. The plastic under guard was pulled off when attempting to free the vehicle. There were no injuries involved in the incident. The vehicle also surged when the cruise control light was on, but not engaged.

- Saint Charles, MO, USA

problem #17

Jan 252004

Camry 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 10,666 miles


After getting the vehicle washed, the consumer moved the gear shift from neutral to drive and the vehicle lurched forward. The consumer's vehicle collided with the vehicle in front and injured a pedestrian standing in between the two vehicles. The pedestrian suffered serious injuries to the legs and was taken to a hospital.

- Monroe Township, NJ, USA

problem #16

Jan 282004


  • miles
While driving consumer applied the brakes and vehicle suddenly accelerated. Consumer was unable to maintain control of the vehicle, and it hit another vehicle head on. Upon impact, both airbags did not deploy. Consumer had vehicle towed to repair shop, but mechanic was not able to duplicate the problem.

- Waukegan, IL, USA

problem #15

Dec 272003

Camry 6-cyl

  • 4,600 miles
Upon putting vehicle in park while at a complete stop with foot depressed on the brake pedal, the vehicle accelerated at a rapid speed. As a result, the vehicle side swiped another vehicle on it's right side. A factory representative inspected the vehicle but couldn't locate the cause of the rapid and sudden acceleration. Updated 7/3/12 updated 07/12/12

- Fresno, CA, USA

problem #14

Jan 062004

Camry 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 2,228 miles
The vehicle accelerated on its own which caused the consumer to crash into a wall and damaged the front of the vehicle. The sudden acceleration occurred on three separate occasions. The first incident happened when the consumer was trying to make a turn. The second time, the vehicle accelerated on its own, it collided with another vehicle. The third incident, the consumer crashed into a wall. The consumer took the to the dealership, where it was examined, but no repairs were done because the employees went on strike. See also 10132649. Updated 7/3/12

- Jamaica, NY, USA

problem #13

Jan 202004

Camry 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 13,850 miles


In November 2003 vehicle experienced sudden acceleration, two months later, once again while driving, vehicle experienced sudden acceleration. Dealer indicated both times that nothing was wrong with the vehicle.

- Visalia, CA, USA

problem #12

Jan 092004

(reported on)


  • 1,274 miles
Consumer complained about an acceleration problem. Vehicle was accelerating without the use of the gas pedal. Once put the vehicle in gear and it revved without driver's assistance.

- Hilo, HI, USA

problem #11

Jun 152003

Camry 6-cyl

  • miles
A 2003 Toyota Camry, V-6, with all safety equipment experienced intermittent cruise control disengagement, actual turn-off, at highway speeds. Sometimes the brake pedal needed to be lifted with the left foot to restart/re-engage the cruise control. Later, while parallel parking, on applying the brake, the car surged ahead hitting the SUV parked ahead. Toyota dealer, and field technician drove vehicle and the only thing noticed was the cruise control went off when turning around in a driveway. The problem was sporadic on the highway when first observed. Toyota legally denied the claim after over 3 months time from reporting to their regional center. No injuries occurred. The master cylinder has been replaced and the front end repaired. The car appears to be operating satisfactorily. The consumer stated if the brake pedal is depressed slightly to disengage the cruise control, he still has to lift the pedal to engage it again. Updated 03/05/10

- Lake Leelanau, MI, USA

problem #10

Aug 292003

Camry 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 450 miles
While parking, the engine started racing and crashed into a wall in a parking lot. Cause of problem has not been determined. While parking the vehicles engine suddenly began to race. The vehicle accelerated forward about 3 feet and crashed into the wall of the parking structure. The vehicle was taken to the dealer but the vehicle has not been inspected to find the cause of the accident.

- Burbank, CA, USA

problem #9

Feb 162003

Camry 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 8 miles
2003 Toyota Camry 3.0L V6 (midyear 210hp motor) the vehicle did not accelerate the way it was designed. The Toyota representative stated it was normal. The consumer believed it was dangerous when the accelerator pedal was pressed, because sometimes the vehicle did not move immediately. When the pedal accelerator pedal was pushed further toward the floor, the vehicle bolted out into traffic with a rush of power. The Toyota representative stated that was how the car was engineered, and he could not do anything about it. The lead mechanic said the consumer needed to get used to it. It had been 5 months since the consumer purchased the vehicle.

- Chesapeake, VA, USA

problem #8

Aug 072003

(reported on)

Camry 4-cyl

  • 3,082 miles
The vehicle experienced brake problems and while driving, the consumer applied the brakes, but it felt as though he stepped on the accelerator. Consumer owns two 2003 Camry models (his and hers) and both vehicles have experienced the same condition.

- Hattiesburg, MS, USA

problem #7

Jul 012003

Camry 4-cyl

  • 12,500 miles
While traveling the vehicle surged forward, suddenly accelerated and crashed into a fence. Consumer was maneuvering the vehicle in a parking spot and lifted her foot from the brake to allow the vehicle to drift forward a short distance. The vehicle accelerated and ran over a parking stop, a sidewalk curb and then ran into a wooden fence where it stopped. On prior occasions, the vehicle had similarly surged forward while stopped in traffic waiting at a traffic signal. In these instances, the consumer was able to control the vehicle by applying the brakes.

- Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA

problem #6

Mar 212003

Camry 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
The vehicle raced backwards when the gear was shifted into reverse. See ODI 10019875

- Plainview, NY, USA

problem #5

May 292003

Camry 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 200 miles
2003 V6 Camry has engine surges/shuddering through all speeds. Is really noticeable AT38-40 mph. Diagnostics showed engine computer needed to be reprogramed - problem was more noticeable when driving in citty where speeds were more increased and decreased. Continued to take back to dealership.

- Ellabell, GA, USA

problem #4

Mar 212003

Camry 4-cyl

  • 600 miles
The vehicle experienced sudden acceleration when the gear was shifted from park to drive, and collided with seven other vehicle's. consumer tried to stop the vehicle by applying the brakes however the brakes failed and the engine continued to race. See also ODI 10025068

- Plainview, NY, USA

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