Notes: 2008 is the first year of the 2nd generation Highlander, & it may be a model year to avoid as Toyota most likely worked out some production quality issues with the new model.

The 2009 Highlander is the has far fewer complaints.


definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
23,835 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.

2008 Toyota Highlander accessories - interior problems

accessories - interior problem

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2008 Toyota Highlander Owner Comments

problem #3

Sep 092013

Highlander 6-cyl

  • 50,000 miles


I own a 2008 Highlander sport that has a major issue with the door locks. The remote key fob no longer works, and now even the button inside the car stopped working. I have done a lot of research and it appears that many people who have owned Highlanders have had this issue. My car was recalled recently for the power windows, and now the door locks no longer work. I would like to file this complaint with the hope that enough people complain to force Toyota to fix this issue.

- Carrollton, TX, USA

problem #2

Apr 092010


  • miles
Toyota safety recall notice. I received a safety recall notice from Toyota about floor mat interference with the accelerator pedal. While the pedal may get stuck on the floor mat, it is highly unlikely that this will cause a sudden increase in acceleration. Common sense tells you that if the pedal gets stuck, the vehicle will remain at the speed in which the problem occurred. This also is true for the alleged sticky accelerator problem. It is disappointing that the ntmvsa has not recognized this problem and is allowing Toyota to continue down this road.

- Thorofare, NJ, USA

problem #1

Aug 142009


  • 21,506 miles
While I was driving our 2008 Toyota Highlander (with 21506 miles) to the Toyota dealer for a tire inspection, the vehicle surged to approx 80 mph without accelerator pedal engagement. When I applied both feet to the brake pedal, it slowed the vehicle to approx 60 mph, but the engine continued to race out of control. I put the vehicle in neutral, but the engine continued to race. I put the vehicle back into drive and turned off the ignition. I eventually glided to a slow, difficult stop. No other vehicles were in the immediate area. After a 5 minute rest in park, I started the car and the engine raced. I immediately turned off the ignition. After another 5 minute delay, I started the vehicle again and it appeared normal. I drove the vehicle to the dealer and explained what had occurred. The dealer could not recreate the event and did not see any readouts indicating what had occurred. They explained it as a ect transmission that is common when the air conditioning is on. Given recent events, my fear it that the explanation given to me is not accurate. I called the dealer several times over the past 2 months to determine what my options are for recall and repair. They continue to tell me to wait for a floor mat recall notice from Toyota, and prior to receiving that notice, they cannot assist. I called the national Toyota service center 1-800-331-4331 to file an incident report. I explained the situation above, they gave me a case number. They indicated that our vehicle was made in Japan and should not be part of the pedal recall. They also indicated that we should be part of the floor mat recall which will include a computer chip adjustment that will install a brake override to ensure that the brake pedal will override the accelerator. Give the recent events over the past 2 days, it appears that may not be working properly on other vehicles. Since August 2009, this situation has not occurred again. My fear is that it will.

- Strongsville, OH, USA

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