really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
87,853 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.

2007 Toyota FJ Cruiser drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2007 Toyota FJ Cruiser Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #26

Jan 012010

FJ Cruiser

  • 40,000 miles


Purchased Fj cruiser in 2010 with approximately 30,000 miles on it. Shortly thereafter, upon acceleration at low speed, the entire vehicle started vibrating; however, the vibration stopped as I accelerated to a higher speed. I noticed that this only occurred when I started with the transmission in D(rive) but never occurred if I started with gear shift in D2. Complained to dealership(Toyota South in morrow, ga) while still within the 60,000 mile power train warranty. The dealership never acknowledged a problem with the transmission. They even suggested that I replace my U-bolt. In 2013, after starting my fj, I heard a loud knocking sound, so I immediately turned it off and had it towed to the dealership. I was told that I needed a new engine due to oil starvation. I parked the vehicle in my garage until this year(2016). I had it towed to the same dealership for another diagnosis. However, this year I'm finally told that my engine is fine, but I need another transmission. This is the same transmission that I complained about while still under warranty. To makes matters even worse, the shady dealership kept no record of my complaints about the transmission while under warranty. I contacted Toyota's corporate office, but of course, they provided no assistance.

- Jonesboro, GA, USA

problem #25

Jun 012016

FJ Cruiser

  • 130,000 miles
At mild acceleration and only when between 1,000-2,000 RPM the vehicle starts to shake / rumble from the rear similar to driving over rumble strips. The rumbling stops as soon as the accelerator is let go of or as soon as the vehicle's RPM falls outside of the 1,000-2,000 range. It is obvious that this is coming from the rear differential assembly. Toyota is well aware of this problem but refuses to provide a fix even though this is clearly an issue of defect in design or build. Our government should protect the taxpayer on this one and force Toyota to enact a recall.

- Newark, NJ, USA

problem #24

Feb 232016

FJ Cruiser

  • 110,000 miles
I took my fj to have the transmission fluid drained and refilled. They decided to do a complete review although I see no tool makes they told me I need to replace my rear differential, and told me as if they just knew it was an issue. The cost was $2360. I went home and did some very brief research and found that this is a known issue for 2009 and later Fj cruisers. In 2010 they changed the rear axle. A huge number of owners on the fj cruise forums have pointed out the issue. The cost at the dealer would be to replace it with the same parts that have not been updates and would fail again. Toyota clearly knows the issue and more than likely knew when producing the original fjs. My fj has never been off road and only used for normal commuting. I don't speed or drive poorly, and my driving record is completely clean. I found a good explanation on an axle web site. The 2009 & older Fj cruisers, 4runners, and prado 120 utilize the 8 which dates back to 1979, and was originally used in 3000 lb MINItrucks with 80 horsepower and 27 tires. Late model modified Toyota such as Fj cruiser run at double the weight, triple the horsepower, and much larger tires to top it off. For this reason there have been lots of failures, enough so that Toyota upgraded the rear to the 8.2 on the 2010 & newer models. It may seem like a small upgrade but there are significant improvements such as beefier casting, larger bearings, larger pinion diameter, larger ring gear diameter, more tooth contact, and a beefier 12 bolt diff case. This makes for an easy swap for your vehicle and will utilize your existing axle shafts, brakes, ABS system etc. This is a big safety issue as this could fail at highway speeds.

- Centennial, CO, USA

problem #23

Feb 032016

FJ Cruiser

  • miles


Rear diff has gone out and is making a loud noise at high speeds. This could potentially kill everyone in my fj if on the interstate and is a problem Toyota is aware of. This should warrant a recall for public safety and Toyota should be held responsible.

- Acworth, GA, USA

problem #22

Sep 212015

FJ Cruiser

  • 148,000 miles
Replaced rear differential $2,500, was advised when picking up the car the frame has rotted out. Mechanic advises life of vehicle approximately 2 years. We would have never repaired the vehicle had we known. I have been advised this is a known Toyota problem.

- Douglas, MA, USA

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problem #21

Oct 212015

FJ Cruiser

  • 76,000 miles
After 76,000 miles the rear axle started making a whining noise. Took to dealership and they said the rear axle needed to be replaced at a cost of $3700. If this rear axle would have broken at highway speeds, I would have lost control of my vehicle which could have caused a major accident. Toyota knew that the rear ring and pinion gear were defective due to over treating at the factory, but failed to notify any owners of Fj cruisers and to issue a recall for that particular problem. This vehicle had never done any off roading of any sort. Toyota has caused a situation for anyone that owns one of these vehicles to put themselves and their passengers at grave risk of causing a major accident if the rear axle gears should fail at highway speeds and or in the process of off roading, which Toyota claims this vehicle is designed to do.

- Leominster, MA, USA

problem #20

Sep 202015

FJ Cruiser

  • 120,000 miles


My 2007 Fj cruiser has about 125,000 miles on it. Last week I noticed that when I drive 45-50 mph the truck makes a noise and shaking in the rear end and bounces slightly. The truck is automatic but when this happens it feels as if I'm driving an automatic vehicle and am in the wrong gear. (loose feeling power train) they checked the universals and they were fine and changed the fluid in the rear pumpkin but still no fix. Now they are telling me try replacing the fluids and filters in the transmission. (another $180 repair bill) this sound only happens when I'm coasting with accelerator at 45-50 mph and not going up any hills or heavy acceleration. I have an appointment to do the transmission service and I hope it fixes the problem.

- Congers, NY, USA

problem #19

Aug 042015

FJ Cruiser

  • 113,000 miles
Rear differential failure. Gear whine/ grind noise getting louder on rear differential. Gear backlash increase. Apparently Toyota is aware of substandard ring and pinion gears in early Fj cruisers and changed the design in later models. Vehicle has never been subjected to off road conditions. Fear gear is going to break and leave me stranded somewhere, so need to replace assembly. Toyota should recall these early differentials as the problem is well documented on all the fj forum sites.

- Sherwood Forest, CA, USA

problem #18

Apr 062015

FJ Cruiser 4WD 6-cyl

  • 108,200 miles
2007 Fj cruiser, at 34066 miles on October 22 2009 vehicle was taken Toyota dealership in alvin, tx for diagnostic test on the complaint of the manual transmission making a high pitched squeak. At that time the dealership replaced the entire transmission under warranty, but at that time there wasn't a fix for the problem. They replaced a broken transmission with one that was prone to fail again. As of today april06 2015 the vehicle is squeaking once again from transmission. Toyota knows of the condition. Tsb 036510 is a fix for the issue but is only covered under 60K mi.

- Cleveland, TN, USA

problem #17

Feb 162015

FJ Cruiser

  • 115,000 miles
Noise from rear of vehicle progressively worsened over 3-4 weeks. Extreme whine/hum with wheel rotation with corresponding decreased gas mileage. Took to dealership and was told that the rear bearings were "shot" and the rear differentials needed to be replaced. I have completed all regularly scheduled maintenance the entire almost 9 years that I've owned the vehicle and have never had any issues. Estimated cost for dealership to repair is ~$2000. Car has 115,000 miles. Wouldn't expect an expense of this magnitude when all maintenance has been completed by dealership.

- Sarasota, FL, USA

problem #16

Feb 022015

FJ Cruiser 4WD 6-cyl

  • 121,364 miles


Vehicle has loud humming or whining noise coming from the rear end of the vehicle. Noise starts around 25 mph and continues to get louder the faster the vehicle goes. Problem didn't begin until around 120500. Notified dealership and they stated that there wasn't anything that could be done other than replace the rear differential and bearings.

- San Marcos, TX, USA

problem #15

Dec 102014

FJ Cruiser 4WD 6-cyl

  • 145,200 miles
This is a complaint upon Toyota and as they have been aware of manufactured defect in the rear differential gears and bearings of most if not all 2007 Fj cruisers. All that are made in 2006 for sale in 2007 have or will have a differential go out as it is a "2000 dollar time bomb waiting to happen as the Toyota service manager stated" I asked the manager if any assistance has been given to any of these repairs as it is a common problem with all 07's and he said Toyota just assisted one they did a few months back and it was out of warranty. With this information it seemed it could be a possibility since Toyota is very aware of the manufactured defect of the rear differential. So I left the Toyota dealership and made my call right away as to just be frustrated as they stated they could not assist in anyway other than file a claim. Still the case even after mentioning that Toyota assisted in paying for some of the cost of this defective part replacement of another same year not that long ago and still got a big no way can we help in anyway with costs as it is not a safety hazard, but to me it could be a safety hazard as I have heard that the rear differential can go out and no powertrain at all at any given moment and could in the middle of an intersection turning, up a hill, passing another vehicle, pulling a trailer, etc. My differential cover is also starting to get hot and smell from I imagine friction. Anyhow so many incidents of the same case with the same year and same problem, its hard to say how many really complaints and claims they have gotten. I have been told more than a thousand cases. Please take this serious and Toyota needs to own up to it for allowing a time bomb waiting to happen and some of those customers had it happen as soon as 65,000 miles just out of warranty. Many others experience the same problem even at earlier mileage just out of warranty.

- East Peoria, IL, USA

problem #14

Nov 232013

FJ Cruiser 6-cyl

  • 89,000 miles
The transmission on my Fj cruiser is shuddering. It first started at low speeds of 25 mph, it now does it at higher rates of speed (50 mph). I was led to believe that it was my tires since they are 21 inch tires. I brought it to a dealership a few weeks ago (August 2014) and was told it is the transmission. I then did my research and have learned that numerous drivers of the 2007 Fj cruiser are experiencing the same issue, and now that the car has over 100,000 miles on it, it is no longer covered under warranty. One just needs to google "2007 Toyota Fj cruiser shuttering transmission" and you will find close to 60 pages of complaints about this very same issue. Please help us. Toyota knows this is an issue and needs to step up. This fix is costly... close to $5000 to rebuild a transmission.

- Swansea, MA, USA

problem #13

Jul 262014

FJ Cruiser

  • 41,000 miles
I was driving on a surface street and felt a strange but and then a distinct thump, thump, thump, sound began emitting from the rear of the vehicle, I contacted my local Toyota deal but they failed to provide me with any helpful information regarding any recalls regarding the rear differential. Since I had the vehicle at a shop already and it was out of warranty, I allowed an outside shop to do the work. 1ea ring and pinion gear set, 1ea bearings kit, 1ea seals kit, synthetic oil, and labor for a total of $2002.20 I find it hard to believe a vehicle with 41.000 miles on would have it rear differential fail in the manner that this unit failed.

- Westlake Village, CA, USA

problem #12

Mar 262014

FJ Cruiser

  • 84,000 miles
This problem started with my 2007 Toyota Fj cruiser (6 speed manual) with only 84K miles. There is this squeaky noise coming under the vehicle and every time I pressed the clutch about 1-2 inches that noise goes away. After taking this to the mechanic we have found that the noise was coming from the throw out bearing, after much investigation I also found that this a very common issue with this model transmission. And more than 65% driver have this issue in the past. I have contacted the Toyota of North America hq and they bluntly refuses to take care of it, and also informed me that this is not a big issue. Toyota forum or even a simple search from the website will explain that how much of a issue is this with consumer who owns this type transmission. I urge NHTSA to address Toyota to take care of this major problem and recall all of this for consumer needs. Thank you.

- Ontario, CA, USA

problem #11

Apr 092014

FJ Cruiser 6-cyl

  • 95,784 miles
I recently purchased a 2007 Toyota Fj cruiser with 95K miles on it. All was fine for about a month until I started experiencing unexplained accelerating and RPM surging when driving below 30 mph and regularly while stopped in traffic with my foot on the brake. It's not a huge rev, but rather the engine will suddenly rise from normal idle RPM to about 1300 RPM, then back down again. I can feel the transmission grabbing and I have to keep the brake depressed to keep from taking off. The surge generally lasts for less than 10 seconds and then goes away for a short time. I can get it to duplicate the problem (at a stop, in gear) almost anytime. If you are not paying close attention and happen to lift your foot off the brake, the vehicle will lurch forward start to accelerate until the transmission downshifts. I fear that this will cause a serious accident someday, and someone could get hurt or killed. I have taken it to my local mechanic who says that he can't quite figure it out.

- Fountain City, WI, USA

problem #10

Sep 112013

FJ Cruiser 6-cyl

  • 166,405 miles
When trying to put my car in reverse I could not move the gear shift lever. It was frozen. The ABS, all the trac annunciator lights stayed on. I had to bypass the gear shift to be able to move the car. I went on line to look up possible causes and was told to contact some of the auto parts companies like auto zone etc. And have them hook up their computer tester to troubleshoot this problem. I haven't had a chance to take it by yet.

- Robbinsville, NC, USA

problem #9

Aug 192013

FJ Cruiser

  • 55,566 miles
Head a slight grinding sound sound coming from the rear of the car(2007 Fj cruiser with 56K miles) took it in to have it inspected and was told it was the rear differential. Bearings in the rear diff needed to be replaced and the job would cost estimated 1700 dollars to fix. Really bummed to hear that as I dont drive aggressive with this car or drive it off road at all. Keep reading other people have the same issue with this car year and Toyota has not done a recall? I always tell people to buy Toyota because they are reliable, not a happy camper at all. The company need to do the right thing and recall something known to be bad!

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #8

Feb 122013

FJ Cruiser

  • 69,000 miles
I bought this car when the mileage was 36000. I still own this truck, the problem I have with this vehicle is too much noise coming from the rear side. I took it to Toyota dealer and was told the bearing is bad on one side of the wheel. I got both rear bearing replaced but the noise remain the same.I talk to Toyota but no fix at all. Still driving it with ear plug.

- Woodbridge , VA, USA

problem #7

May 272013

FJ Cruiser 6-cyl

  • 78,800 miles
Loud grinding sound coming from the back of the car.

- Fort Smith, AR, USA

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