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:
26 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
25 / 0
Average Mileage:
45,695 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 seat belts / air bags problems

seat belts / air bags problem

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2003 Toyota Camry Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #41

Sep 302016


  • miles


The contact owned a 2003 Toyota Camry. While idling, the vehicle accelerated rapidly in reverse on its own without warning. As a result, the contact's vehicle crashed into another vehicle and a picnic table. The air bags did not deploy. A police report was filed. There were no injuries sustained. The vehicle was towed and destroyed. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was unknown.

- Willingboro, NJ, USA

problem #40

May 012016


  • 150,000 miles
Takata recall.

- Birdsboro, PA, USA

problem #39

Sep 182015


  • 100,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Toyota Camry. The contact stated that while stopped at a stop sign, another vehicle crashed into the rear of the contact's vehicle. The air bags did not deploy. The driver sustained injuries to her back and neck and the passenger sustained injuries to his back and legs which required medical attention. A police report was not filed. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic where it was diagnosed that the vehicle was destroyed. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was approximately 100,000.

- San Jose, CA, USA

problem #38

Aug 262015

Camry 4-cyl

  • 181,000 miles


There was a head-on crash into a stopped vehicle. Speed about 45 mph. Airbag did not deploy. Car was totaled, driver suffered broken sternum...updated 10/02/15

- Broadview Heights, OH, USA

problem #37

Aug 202014


  • 90,000 miles
I noticed about a year ago that the seam on the front passenger airbag was separating from the dash board. There is yellow beginning to show on the top part of the seam. It is getting larger and separating more over time. I am afraid that the airbag might deploy injuring anyone sitting in the front passenger seat and possibly causing the driver to crash. I live in a hot desert climate of central California.

- Bakersfield, CA, USA

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problem #36

May 302015


  • miles
Filing a complaint on behalf of my father-in-law. He has a very low mileage 2003 Toyota Camry which has been well maintained. There is a large gap which has formed at the top of the air bag cover lining and dashboard. Like many others who have complained about the same issue, he is afraid of the air bag deploying.

- West Harrison, NY, USA

problem #35

May 192015


  • miles


No accident yet...but my passenger airbag seam is splitting. I am concerned for the safety of my family.

- Vero Beach, FL, USA

problem #34

Sep 222014


  • 99,000 miles
This Camry was purchased, new, by my mom and step dad is eugene, or in 2003. They resided in florence, Oregon, a beach town for the next 7 years. I moved my mom to reno, nv when she developed alzheimer's. although Nevada is a low humidity state, the fact that this car resided on the coast in florence, or where humidity is high, rain constant I feel this car should have the repair to the front airbag. I am my mom's caretaker in my home and now with hospice's help. I also have an adult son on ssdi who needs my assistance. I worry that if something happens to me, due to the airbags in this 2003 Camry, that my mom, son and family would be greatly affected, not to mention possible injury/death to me or passenger. Please consider this car to be included in the recall to repair/replace the takata airbag. I have contacted the local Toyota dealership as well. Thank you, please offer me peace of mind and have this airbag replaced/repaired.

- Reno, NV, USA

problem #33

Jan 022015

Camry 4-cyl

  • 50,000 miles
This car has an airbag starting to come of out of it containment. It is the airbag on the passenger side. We have taken this car to the dealer but they claim there is no recall. I think there should be. This is a hazardous situation. It began at about 50K but now is getting worse and the mileage is over 74K. It was taken to the closest dealer when the mileage was about 63K. It gets worse every day.

- Merritt Island, FL, USA

problem #32

Oct 012010

Camry 4-cyl

  • miles
The airbag in front passenger side of my Toyota Camry 2003 appears as though it may burst open at any time. There is a portion of what appears to be part of the airbag hanging out on the dashboard. Each year it gets worst. I live in a warm weather state, and wonder if that has anything to do with the bulging airbag. Please let me know if there is a procedure to take to get this fixed. I have my grandkids riding with me all the time now that they live closer to me, and I am afraid for their safety.

- Baton Rouge, LA, USA

problem #31

Jun 082010


  • 50,000 miles


The contact owns a 2003 Toyota Camry. The contact stated that the dashboard developed a crack, exposing the passenger's side air bag. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was unavailable. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 50,000.

- Murrells Inlet, SC, USA

problem #30

Jun 172009

Camry 6-cyl

  • 80,000 miles
I was involved in a crash where I was hit on the passenger side. Although the impact was severe enough to cause damage to the frame of the car, none of the six (6) air bags deployed. As mentioned in a previous complaint, there is now a gap on the dashboard around the area for the passenger air bag.

- Boynton Beach, FL, USA

problem #29

Mar 212014

Camry 4-cyl

  • miles
Several months ago, I went to my local Toyota dealership about a concern with my passenger side air bag. I was told without them touching my vehicle that I needed a new dashboard which is over $2000. I left because I didn't have $2000 plus to purchase a dashboard. I went online to and submitted a complaint on 6/24/2014. I spoke with [xxx], a day or so later and she advised me to go back and have them check it, which I did and I was told when I got there it would be an hour/hour and a half before they get to my car. I told[xxx] (advisor) that I'll wait in the lounge area, it was approximately 2:01pm, at 2:30pm he told me my car was ready. I was given a couple of print outs and was told once again I needed a new dashboard because the vehicle was old, per [xxx]. he also asked me if I could read when I asked if it was stated on the print outs, very rude! I spoke with [xxx] again and she said she would have to speak with my local dealership first and she'd contact me in a few days, which she did and said the service manager named [xxx] said he told me it was a cosmetic issue. I never spoke with a tim. She also told me that Toyota will not help me because it's a cosmetic issue, per [xxx] at bev smith Toyota. I attached photos with my complaint to Toyota. I went online and found a complaint site and posted my complaint on there and found out I could contact NHTSA. As I stated to Toyota corporation, I'm not seeking a new vehicle or money, I just want this problem fixed. I would hate for something tragic to happen when the issue could've been resolved! basically, Toyota is saying that their dashboards don't last over ten years. Very disappointed with them and I was considering purchasing another Camry, not after this!! my complaint isn't the only one for that particular vehicle. Shameful!! information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Fort Pierce, FL, USA

problem #28

Jun 242014

Camry 4-cyl

  • 82,400 miles
I have a 2003 Camry le, and I am concerned the airbag on the passenger side is showing gaps around the cavity on the dashboard. I use the car for daily transportation for personal use, and I'm afraid it might explode from the high heat. I reside in the state of Florida. What is my recourse to solve this matter? I heard and read that there is a recall for Toyota vehicle of that year because of the airbag problem in Florida.

- The Villages, FL, USA

problem #27

Jan 092014

Camry 6-cyl

  • miles
2003 Toyota Camry. Consumer writes in regards to vehicle sudden acceleration. The consumer stated as she was driving into a covered parking garage, retrieved her parking ticket and proceeded up the ramp, the engine suddenly revved to a speed she could not control. She tried to pump the brakes, but to no avail. She hit a parked truck and that stopped the vehicle, moving the truck approximately 6-8 feet. The consumer stated it was practically a front end collision and the air bags failed to deploy. The insurance company totaled the vehicle. Updated 05/13/14

- San Antonio, TX, USA

problem #26

Sep 052013

Camry 4-cyl

  • miles
2003 Toyota Camry. Consumer writes in regards to vehicle sudden acceleration and air bags malfunction. The consumer was driving with the cruise control activated, and as he was preparing to exit the parkway, the vehicle suddenly accelerated, despite the application of the brake. He lost control of the vehicle, and consequently he hit a guard rail and the vehicle rolled over. The consumer sustained a deep laceration to his knee.

- Thornwood, NY, USA

problem #25

Apr 202013


  • 115,000 miles
2003 Toyota Camry. Consumer writes in regards to vehicle air bag malfunction. The consumer stated she was involved in an accident. In what should have been a fender-bender, because the other vehicle was accelerating, turned into a rather serious accident. The other vehicle made a left turn and crashed into the consumers vehicle, as she was proceeding straight ahead, and sent her two lanes over into a ditch. The consumer received serious injuries. The vehicle was totaled. The consumer stated had the air bag deployed, her injuries, may not have been as serious. Updated 10/28/13

- Forest Hill, MD, USA

problem #24

Jul 262013

Camry 4-cyl

  • miles
I was in the driver seat waiting to turn left, when suddenly I got hit from the rear right part of my car. From that moment the car could not drive.. the rear left part of the car body and the tire was totally damaged. The repair shop declared that the car could not be repaired any more. Only later of the incident did I remember that the airbags did not work at all.

- Tucson, AZ, USA

problem #23

May 302013

Camry 4-cyl

  • 43,911 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Toyota Camry. The contact stated while driving 1 mph in a parking lot, the vehicle accelerated independently. The contact crashed into a protected barrier to avoid crashing into pedestrians and the air bags failed to deploy. The contact sustained a contusion and a burn mark caused by seat belt. A police report was filed. The vehicle was towed to a collision center by the insurance company. The vehicle was not inspected to determine the cause of failure. The failure was reported to the manufacturer. The failure and current mileage was 43,911. Updated 7/17/13

- Staten Island, NY, USA

problem #22

May 122013

Camry 6-cyl

  • 77,000 miles
We were traveling in the center lane of I-5 at 55mph and a car (a Jeep wagoneer) spun out of control on the adjacent cloverleaf and hit us on the passenger side. The impact was on our front right side tearing the right front wheel A-arm crumbling the right side of the car all the way back to the rear door of the 4 door sedan. Both front air bags deployed. But neither side air bag deployed. My wife was thrown against her seat belt causing bruising and the door creating large bruises on her right hip, knee, and pain across the chest (from the seat belt).

- Wilsonville, OR, USA

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