Notes: Beware of the NHTSA complaint data for the 2004 Camry. It is almost certainly misleading.

The problem with NHTSA data for the 2004 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 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 2004 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:
5 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
39,496 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.

2004 Toyota Camry steering problems

steering problem

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2004 Toyota Camry Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #58

Aug 182016


  • 196,000 miles


While driving yesterday - August 18, 2016, power steering went on and off when turning. Seemed to be the power steering - made it hard to turn the wheels. Driving on highway straight ahead was fine. On city streets and parking the issue was very noticeable and frightening since I didn't know if I could control my moving vehicle.. in checking to see where to get repair done, I noticed there is a recall for power steering on the 2004 Camry. Called local Toyota dealer where I bought the car, and was told that this VIN number has no recalls.

- Cumberland, RI, USA

problem #57

Mar 012011


  • 85,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Toyota Camry. The contact stated that while driving at various speeds, the steering wheel vibrated and required excessive force to control. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 85,000.

- Condo 724, MO, USA

problem #56

Aug 242007

Camry 4-cyl

  • 45,453 miles
When I was driving my car from parking lot to go home, I heard loud noise from front of my car and felt stiffness of control of my car. I tried to drive back to parking to take a look, but the car lost of power steering assist. The car was towed to Toyota dealer. The dealer found out the power steering pulley had broken off and the drive belt came off. I was lucky it happened in parking lot, or I may get to a car accident. I have contacted to Toyota, but they said it was not in recall of failed crankshaft pulley because the VIN number does not in the range of recall. But my car has exactly same issue the recall NHTSA campaign id number: 11V539000 has. The car is 2004 Camry.

- Sunnyvale, CA, USA

problem #55

Jan 082014


  • 64,070 miles


I started up my 2004 Toyota Camry while parked at curb. When I put car in "drive, " the steering wheel locked up (froze in place). I was unable to turn the wheel in either direction. Restarted car and steering was normal.

- Jamaica, NY, USA

problem #54

Sep 022013


  • 206,000 miles
I have steering noise issue from the day I purchased this vehicle in 2004. I have taken my vehicle to the dealership so many times to report this to the dealer and get it fixed but dealer has not fixed this issue. After the warranty on this vehicle is over when I took it back to the dealer and reported this again dealer wants to replace parts with the cost of 2000 dollars to fix it. I was not aware of this website before otherwise I would have submitted my complaint earlier but still want to report to the NHTSA to record this for future. I did some research on this issue and found out apparently all the 2003-2004 Toyota has this same issue but the company and the dealers tries to deny that.

- Northville, MI, USA

problem #53

Jun 012013

Camry 4-cyl

  • 38,500 miles
I suddenly experienced an increased effort to make a turn.

- Overland Park, KS, USA

problem #52

Mar 042013

Camry 4-cyl

  • 65,000 miles


I was driving, took a corner and my car turned off without warning or signal, and I lost power steering and hit another parked vehicle. I proceeded to turn my car back on, drive ten feet and the engine shut off again without warning. I went to the auto body shop and they stated it was a code 2112 throttle issue. I researched on the internet and saw several other consumer complaints about this same issue with the same make/model/year and around the same mileage as my car has. Toyota is not recalling or providing free service on the parts and I was given an estimate of over $1300 to fix. Seeing that this is normal wear and tear - I didnt do a thing to cause this to happen, and it's a safety issue, I believe they should be replacing and or recalling these vehicles.

- Stoneham, MA, USA

problem #51

Jan 262013


  • 61,262 miles
Took car for test drive on road described to me by a dealership employee as an uncrowned road.let go of steering wheel a few times and immediately the car took off to the left repeatedly. Went back to dealership, said would buy car, but that I would have to have the steering pulling cured.went back next day or two, tires rotated. On drive home pulling was back.went back for realignment. Was told the problem was "minimalized".got in the car, let go of the steering wheel, started the pulling in the dealership parking lot. Took car to independent to check the front end.he said could only find most minor alignment problems, not enough to cause the pulling. He checked out underside for any damage, found notthing. Back to dealership for replacement of rack & pinion & two new tires on the front. Job finished, left and made right onto a right hand pull. Car never previously pulled right except for a couple of times when braking.made left to go home and had only left pulling on all roads traveled.on open six lane highway I let go of the wheel, by the count of three entire car is in the lane to the left. I read on this site incidents with pulling that have resulted in unsafe situations.

- Longs, SC, USA

problem #50

Dec 252012

Camry 4-cyl

  • 107,400 miles
I was approaching a freeway in atlanta, ga. As the connector curved, I was driving about 35 mph and gently brake about 200 feet from the freeway. The car immediately and violently accelerated, throwing my head back against the headrest; I brake harder but there was no response from the car; the car seemed to pivot on the right front tire and the rear end flew to my left about 240 degrees or so and struck the guard rail with the left rear quarter panel and bumper. The car then, continuing at high speed, ricocheted off the guard rail and the rear end pivoted toward the road, making the front bumper strike the same guard rail. The second collision scraped the paint off the center of the bumper but the impact seemed stronger than the damage would indicate. The second impact did stop the car. I make this report because my car was not one of those recalled by Toyota for this problem; but, believe me, it happened.

- Talking Rock, GA, USA

problem #49

Jan 042012

Camry 4-cyl

  • miles
No incident, program keep asking for date: Its a dummy date. I am the original owner of Toyota Camry lxi 2004. Around 35,260 miles and before 3 years (under warranty) steering started causing trouble, started to feel and hear cllcking in the steering when ever the steering wheel is moved or during driving in either direction. In addition to this problem some times steering gets really hard during driving. I took the car to an authorized dealer in Chicago and it was tested by a mechanic and I was told that they could not find any problem. After 16 months and at 43,752 miles the problem got worst and I had to take the car back to the same authorized dealer in Chicago, and after checking it I was told that yes their is a problem with the steering and it will cost me $520 + labor to fix it. I refused to pay and told them that I will file a complain with Toyota Corp that when I brought the car for the same reason under warranty it was not fixed and now you want to fix the same problem charging the customer. Finally the manager got the ok from Toyota Corp and fixed the problem without charge. Now after 3 years at 63,632 miles same problems with the steering returned and a authorized dealer in California wants to charge me $715 + labor. I filed a online complain with Toyota Corp (main office in torrance, ca) and after investigation they told me that when the authorized dealer in Chicago fixed the problem, he fixed it as a goodwill ! what does it mean? when I took the car for the same problem it was under warranty and it was fixed for no charge. I don't think I like to pay any money for this kind of problem and Toyota Corp should be responsible to fix this problem with no charge to customer.

- Santa Clara, CA, USA

problem #48

Nov 122011

Camry 4-cyl

  • miles


The left front tire ( new tire, I punched 4 new Michelin tires 7/11) on my car popped. I am not sure if the car pedal got stuck first, everything happened fast. Steering became impossible and the car when side to side as I attempted to steer the car. The stewing wheel would turn, but it didn't work. The major thing is that I couldn't operate the car because of the pedal getting stuck and the steering was impossible after that. The car was taken to carriage cage auto repair by aaa, who recommended I take it there, since the car could not be driven. I then went to the er room for care. Nationwide insurance was notified, they gave an estimate of over five thousand dollars to repair the car. Toyota in lake city, wa -bruce in auto care was notified regarding the pedal becoming stuck. I will have to take the car there once it is repaired. I wonder how safe is the car and what can be done about it.

- Shoreline, WA, USA

problem #47

Oct 062006

Camry 4-cyl

  • 56,000 miles
I bought the used 2004 Toyota Camry in October and found that the car would pull to the left and found that I had to firmly hold onto the steering wheel while I was driving. I went to the NHTSA website to see if other people were experiencing the same problem. I found that this was a common complaint among Toyota Camry owners. Toyota didn't have a recall issued. In January 2011 I experienced a vibration in the steering wheel as I was entering a major highway that scared the heck out of me. I drove in the right-hand lane and dropped my speed until the vibration stopped. I had a mechanic check out the steering mechanism and he was not able to correct the problem. I have also had wheel alignments during the past five years. I am having trouble steering when I make left- or right-hand turns in addition to holding onto the steering wheel (which becomes stressful during long driving trips). My neck muscles become very cramped because I need to Focus on steering the car. I've registered my car with Toyota and I'm waiting for Toyota to issue a recall. This is the first car I've ever owned that I do not enjoy driving.

- Revere, MA, USA

problem #46

Jan 152005


  • 40,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Toyota Camry. The contact stated that while driving approximately 50 mph, the steering wheel shifted from left to right involuntarily. The failure occured constantly while driving at different speeds. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for diagnostics because the warranty had expired. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 40,000.

- Gray, KY, USA

problem #45

Jun 162011


  • 25,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Toyota Camry. The contact was driving approximately 40 mph when the steering wheel began moving from left to right independently. The contact decelerated to move to the shoulder as the failure persisted. The vehicle was then towed to the dealer where they advised her that there was as steering fluid leakage due to the steering pump being fractured. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was contacted and offered no assistance. The failure and current mileages were approximately 25,000. The VIN was not available.

- Palm Beach Gardens, FL, USA

problem #44

Nov 042010

Camry 6-cyl

  • 48,000 miles
At around 48,000 miles, I started to feel and hear a clicking in the steering. It occurs any time the steering wheel is moved, (parked or driving). I had a mechanic check it out and was told that the intermediate slide shaft is causing the problem. As I searched through your complaint list, I see there are a lot of complaints against this model and year. It seems Toyota does not want to take responsibility. I was told that there are other manufacturers that have the same type of problems and have made repairs to their vehicles. Also there are third party replacement parts to fix this problem (at the owners┐ expense). How many failures, crashes or possibly deaths will it take to make Toyota issue a recall to repair this? Toyota claims it is not a safety issue, yet there seems to be a lot of letters stating that their safety was at risk. It is uncomfortable to hear and feel that noise every time my wife or I are driving this vehicle.

- Coplay, PA, USA

problem #43

Nov 202009


  • 80,000 miles
I own a 2004 Toyota Camry. It has a defective throttle body which has left my wife stranded and cost $1000 to fix from the dealer. This is a common problem and a few of my friends have had to pay twice to get this fixed. The other issue is there a defective part in the steering linkage that pops when you turn. This eventually leads to slop in the steering and it cause my to go in the ditch. This accident has given me a chronic back condition and prevented me from commissioning in the military. This issue is also known to be a problem with the Camry but Toyota refuses to do anything about it.

- Hermantown, MN, USA

problem #42

Jul 012006


  • 40,000 miles
2004 Toyota Camry has a clicking sound in the steering column.

- Xxx, VA, USA

problem #41

Jun 222010

Camry 4-cyl

  • 26,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Toyota Camry. The contact stated that the steering wheel shaft failed because of the bearings and caused the steering wheel to feel extremely tight. The dealer stated that the steering wheel could lock while driving. The steering column, steering assembly and the bearings were replaced at the owners expense. The failure and current mileages were approximately 26,000. Updated 8/25/10 updated 08/27/10 updated 08/30/10

- Edison , NJ, USA

problem #40

Apr 212010


  • 73,000 miles
Noise in steering column and too much play in steering. Replaced intermediate steering column shaft. Major issue averted since my mechanic picked up on the issue. Significant automobile part, should not have failed. Toyota has a service bulletin but not a recall on this issue.

- Sudbury, MA, USA

problem #39

Oct 032005


  • miles
Fax on behalf of re her defective 2004 Toyota Camry: Defective steering shaft was replace but noise has returned; reply attn: Cape coral district office. The consumer stated the vehicle made a distinctive noise when the steering wheel was turned. The problem returned six months later.

- Naples, FL, USA

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