hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
92,766 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.

2006 Toyota Highlander engine problems

engine problem

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2006 Toyota Highlander Owner Comments

problem #12

Jan 012016


  • miles


The vehicle only has 103,000 miles and has functioned flawlessly till recently when it started using oil excessively. That is one quart in 500 miles at freeway speeds.

- Reno, NV, USA

problem #11

Nov 012015


  • 90,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Toyota Highlander. When the vehicle was started, the brake light, antilock brake light, and the check engine light illuminated. The vehicle did not accelerate and the antilock brakes did not work. The vehicle was taken to a local dealer where it was diagnosed that the computer core needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was approximately 90,000...updated 05/02/16

- West Long Branch, NJ, USA

problem #10

Mar 072016


  • 125,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Toyota Highlander. The contact stated that while driving at approximately 45 mph, the vehicle stalled as all the dashboard warning lights illuminated. The vehicle was able to restart. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 125,000.

- Yadkinville, NC, USA

problem #9

Oct 012015


  • 115,000 miles


Driving car and it stalled then mesage came on which stated check hybrid engine. Took it to shop and was told would cost $9,000 as it was the inverter. They said my VIN was not on the recall list for the recall of 2006 Highlander hybrids. Had the power module replaced as recall in 2012 but why wasnt my car on recall list for the inverter?

- Burlingame, CA, USA

problem #8

Sep 292012


  • 240,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Toyota Highlander. As soon as the vehicle was started, the vsc light and check engine warning indicator illuminated simultaneously and remained illuminated. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic, but could not be diagnosed. The vehicle was repaired; however, the failure recurred. The manufacturer was made aware of the issue. The VIN was invalid. The approximate failure mileage was 240,000.

- Bethpage, NY, USA

problem #7

Oct 312014


  • 90,195 miles
Driving down the road at normal speed, I noticed the car overheating. This had never happened. Pulling into a 70 year old service center in cranston, Rhode Island, I left the car with reliable service people and they checked it out. It seems that the bolts had come loose from the engine and fluid was going into the pistons, they reported to me that the threads in the engine were faulty, I think they said aluminum, and they should have been metal. I am not mechanically inclined so I don't understand the whole problem. They said that the engine head was not secure and this has happened to other Toyota engines. Anyway, at 70 yrs old, it took all the money I had to repair it and they insisted that I look for a recall, because that should have never happened. $1842 later, the car is running like it should now. If Toyota doesn't take care of me, I will spend the rest of my life spreading the word. I will start at the Rhode Island dealers, go on line and contact all the proper areas. This should not have happened to my Toyota.this is the car that they advertise will last 265000 miles if maintained properly. I bought the car at earl stewart Toyota in lake park, Florida. [xxx] told me he was sorry that this happened, to report it to Toyota. My wife passed away and it moved back to my home state in Rhode Island. The car was maintained by Toyota always thru my warranty. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Cranston, RI, USA

problem #6

Apr 012013

Highlander 4-cyl

  • 102,000 miles


When I was driving on the interstate about 75mph the temperature gauge rose above the read line (hot). Before I was able to get to a parking area it continuously rose and fell, however, it never dropped as low as the middle line on the gauge. After checking the fluids I had to add water. I took my Highlander to a mechanic and they told me that the intake manifold was cracked and was leaking coolant($700 to repair this). I had this fixed and had not taken it out of town until Apr 27, 2013 and the same thing happened again. Took it to Toyota and they told me that the threads were stripped and the bolts were coming out "the head is pulling away from the block and coolant is leaking. I take very good care of my vehicle and have every receipt for oil changes and maintenance. I was told that I may need a new engine ($6000 to fix this) and am concerned that this is happening to a lot of people with this type of car. Coolant is dangerous to humans, animals, and the environment so this can be a safety concern. Toyota needs to take responsibility for this error I am very frustrated and Toyota is not going to do anything about it. I know I am not the only one with this issue with this Toyota and they have lost a loyal customer over this. This issue is obviously happening more and more everyday and it is frustrating. Any advise is welcome!!!

- Ft Pierre, SD, USA

problem #5

May 022013

Highlander 4-cyl

  • 103,000 miles
While driving the temperature gauge rose above the read line (hot). Before I was able to get to a parking area it continuously rose and fell, however, it never dropped as low as the middle line on the gauge. After checking the fluids we had to add water. We took the Highlander and were told that it had a coolant leak. From there we took it to a Toyota dealership and were told that the entire engine would need replacing. I claimed that this had to be some sort of factory defect because he explained that the threads were stripped and the bolts were coming out "the head is pulling away from the block". we have always taken great care of our vehicle and this is not something that should happen to any well made vehicle. After doing research online I found that many others have suffered with the exact same issue and nothing was done to help with their situation. Please see the web page below. www.aboutautomobile.com/complaint/2006/Toyota/Highlander/engine+and+engine+cooling+system this is only one of several that I have found. While I am not sure if there are any safety issues here but many people have suffered when obviously Toyota is neglecting this issue. I'm not sure what else we can do but any advice would be helpful. Thank you.

- Baton Rouge, LA, USA

problem #4

Mar 162013

Highlander 4-cyl

  • 53,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Toyota Highlander. The contact stated that while driving approximately 75 mph, there was a complete loss of engine power. Additionally, the trac off and vsc warning indicators illuminated prior to the failure. The vehicle was coasted into the center median where the contact exited the vehicle. A massive amount of smoke emitted inside of the vehicle and the grassy area underneath the vehicle was on fire. There was no personal injury. The fire department extinguished the flames. The vehicle was completely destroyed and towed to a salvage facility. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 53,000. Updated 05/28/13 updated 06/11/2013

- Springfield, OH, USA

problem #3

Mar 292013

Highlander 4-cyl

  • 81,000 miles
I was advised that my head gasket blew at 80,000 miles and when they went to fix it they found the threads were stripped and I need a new engine? at 80,000 miles, this is insane. I googled this problem and found many people are having the same problem. There is obviously a manufacturers defect with these bolts. No way the threads should be strippled and a head gasket blown at 81,000.

- Levittown, NY, USA

problem #2

Mar 182013

Highlander 6-cyl

  • 48,000 miles
High engine RPM at idle, the current mileage is 48,000.

- Irving, NY, USA

problem #1

Oct 172011

Highlander 4-cyl

  • 66,000 miles
Three months and 6000 miles past the warranty (66,000 miles) our Highlander failed (overheated). I googled the problem and there were many similar occurrences with this engine. Oolant leaked from engine onto floor in large amounts. Our mechanic said threads were stripped and three head gasket bolts had pulled out. Only solution, new engine or possible rebuild by Toyota dealership. Toyota refused to help us. They denied that this problem even existed. But why would Toyota put out a bulletin on how best to repair this problem, if the problem didn't even exist? Toyota dealership did not offer to help. We had our local dependable Toyota mechanic rebuild threads for $2,700.a lot of money to spend on a Toyota with under 70,000 miles. Very disappointed in Toyota's response. They not only lost my future business but also my daughter's. car works fine now. But I no longer have confidence in the vehicle. That loss of feeling of dependability is the worst part.

- Allston , MA, USA

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