hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
106,136 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 Highlander exhaust system problems

exhaust system problem

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2003 Toyota Highlander Owner Comments

problem #2

Mar 302010


  • 163,323 miles


My 2003 Highlander heat gage indicated the engine was starting to get hot. I pull into service station to check coolant level and noticed coolant leaking on the ground. I waited for about 15 minutes to assure myself it was safe to take off the radiator cap. I could not see any coolant so, I purchased a gallon of pre-mixed coolant and poured in about 1/2 to 3/4 gallon to bring it up to full. I made the trip home without the car getting hot, but noticed the leak was still there. I had the vehicle looked at by a local Toyota dealer and was told the car needed major repairs. There is a technical support bullitin on the engine in question. A 2.4 litre (4 cylinder) engine common on camarys and Highlanders. I feel Toyota should have to repair this vehicle in light of the fact Toyota has known of the design defect on other models (camary and Highlanders). When I took the car in for repairs the service scheduler knew exactly what problem I was describing to him about my car. This indicated to me, Toyota has informed their dealers of the problem or, they wouldn't have sent a service bullitin on the very fix to my cars problem. The service bullitin described (3) head bolts around the intake manifold would stretch and fail to seal the head thus, leak coolant. The bullitin even describes installing heli-coils in the (3) affected bolts to solve the problem. This appears to be another failure of Toyota taking responsibility for known defects in their automobiles. I bought and paid for this vehicle in good faith on the reliability record of the Toyota company's past record. I now feel I have been treated unfairly by this company. I would understand if this was an isolated occurance, but it is not and Toyota knows this full well. Service bullitins don't get sent to all dealers for a single occurance. Please help !

- Georgetown, OH, USA

problem #1

Jul 232008


  • 48,948 miles
Replacement of a charcoal canister on a 2003 Toyota Highlander. No accidents occurred as a result of the replacement of this part; however, I am concerned about the number of reports of having to replace this very expensive part. Also if the part is a safety hazard (may cause an engine fire) it should not be at the expense of the owner. The part is an emission control device that is surely required by the government. This action is taken because I noticed, while researching charcoal canisters that Toyota come up frequently as having to have this type repair. At this writing I am unable to confirm the part is defective as it is the original part that came with the vehicle when I purchased it brand new. This is not a pre-owned vehicle.

- Longwood, FL, USA

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