really awful
Crashes / Fires:
5 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
147,993 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 Highlander Hybrid brakes problems

brakes problem

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2007 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Owner Comments

problem #17

Apr 182016

Highlander Hybrid

  • 220,000 miles


Brake actuator makes very loud clicking sound for several minutes after exiting vehicle. When braking over bumpy roads, brakes "skip" as if releasing and then grabbing again. Also, brakes grab intermittently when slowing down on a hill when nearly stopped. All appears related to ABS braking system.

- Columbia, SC, USA

problem #16

Jun 152015

Highlander Hybrid

  • 163,600 miles
Told by Toyota dealer that the brake actuator accumulator pump assembly has internal pressure loss. Statement followed by "shouldn't normally do that" and "$3200 to repair". next, I was informed that the issue effects anti-lock braking system. While driving and coming to a stop the braking becomes difficult. It feels as if the power is lost in the brakes and takes much more force on the pedal to make stop. However this problem is not consistent, at times the breaking is normal, but after driving for a while the hard to brake issue arises.

- Brentwood, CA, USA

problem #15

Aug 182015

Highlander Hybrid

  • 92,000 miles
The contact owns a 2007 Toyota Highlander hybrid. While the vehicle was undergoing scheduled maintenance, the mechanic pointed out that the ABS actuator was defective and needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 92,000.

- Mclean, VA, USA

problem #14

Oct 182015

Highlander Hybrid

  • 47,000 miles


The vsc system warning appears and it smell like the brake is imgage of attached like a burning metal smell.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #13

Aug 202015

Highlander Hybrid

  • 124,180 miles
I took my car in for a flat tire repair and an alignment. After the services were performed the mechanic was unable to reset the computer as it kept showing an error. All lights on the dashboard were lighted. I drove the car to a Toyota service center. When driving I noticed that the brakes did not feel quite right. It didn't feel like they would brake quickly if need be. The ultimate diagnosis was the car had a C1345 linear valve offset undone and C1368 linear valve offset malfunction. A new brake actuator was installed at a cost of $3200. Per my research, this has been reported for the Toyota Camry hybrid as an issue. Perhaps the highlander should also be looked into.

- Sacramento, CA, USA

problem #12

Aug 032015

Highlander Hybrid

  • 100,820 miles
I was travelling 45 mph, when a car in front of me suddenly stopped. I had to brake hard and my car stalled. I felt a thud, went to accelerate and realized my car had no power. I had to put it in park and restart the car. My car had a recall in 2013 regarding possible stall due to heat possibly causing a defect in the hybrid computer board. I took it in and this was supposedly fixed. This is the one and only time my car has stalled, but it was scary because I had multiple cars behind me and I could have rear-ended. I have taken my car into Toyota to be examined.

- Fayetteville, GA, USA

problem #11

Jun 052014

Highlander Hybrid

  • 90,501 miles


First noticed on date above, but occurs at least once a week. When slowing down, and brakes are applied, if a bump, pothole, and traction is lost for a split second the brakes stop working and the car surges, coasts, disengage. Firm pressure on brakes is used to compensate for the loss of braking power. As a result stopping distance is increased. This loss of breaking power lasts for 1/2 to 1 second. Perhaps its related to the hybrid regenerating system. Never the less it is very disconcerting to lose brakes, even for a split second

- Ovid, MI, USA

problem #10

Feb 242015

Highlander Hybrid 6-cyl

  • 105,000 miles
I am reporting two issues with my highlander. The first is in regards to the brake system. While looking at another complaint that had been filed, I realized that my car did the same thing. Brakes become momentarily unresponsive when stopping. Car lurches forward and additional force is needed on pedal to regain control. I copied word for word what the other person wrote, as that describes it perfectly. My second complaint regards the windshield wipers. The wiper on the left has stopped working well, and will not wipe back and forth properly on the window. It stops or gets stuck mid-wipe, obscuring my vision. It is very dangerous, and I am having them repaired tomorrow. Thank you.

- Woodbine, MD, USA

problem #9

Jan 172015

Highlander Hybrid 6-cyl

  • 110,000 miles
Failed. Car not safe to drive per Toyota service technician, and requires replacement costing $3700. The fault was a failed ABS brake actuator ("same as in '07 hybrid Camry").

- Honolulu, HI, USA

problem #8

Dec 062014

Highlander Hybrid

  • 170,000 miles
After getting off the highway (not in my town) lights came on my dashboard for the ABS braking and vsc system. There were also additional characters like (!) in a circle. The manual said for all of these contact dealer immediately, which I did. I was told the ABS accumulator needed to be replaced and it was approximately a $3,000 job. I had the repair completed and paid $2,700. (the dealer discounted the job). I am aware that Toyota is aware of this problem and has extended the warranty on that same part in the Camry hybrid. Further the internet is replete with instances of this happening in 2006 and 2007 Highlander hybrid models. Toyota has no credit, extended warranty, or other benefit to Highlander hybrid owners. I called Toyota and have a case number with them (#1412081681). I feel there should be a recall or extension of warranty on this known defective part. Is there any investigation into this issue?

- Punta Gorda, FL, USA

problem #7

Nov 082014

Highlander Hybrid 6-cyl

  • 86,074 miles


While entering into a driveway at a very slow speed, I stepped on the brake to slow down further. But instead of braking, the car lunged forward. I felt I was not in control of the vehicle. I continued to hit the brakes, but the vehicle continued to go forward. It slammed into the car that was parked in the driveway and caused major damage. It also shoved the car into their garage, split the frame in half and ripped off brick from their home. The surface was slippery with wet leaves and there was a slight incline going up the driveway, but I just had brand new top of the line winter tires put on and I was probably only going 5 mph. It did not make any sense. From reading the forums on line, I believe this is a major defect with the hybrid and Toyota is not doing anything about it. They need to do a recall. Lives are at stake. Thank god no one was hurt, but it could have been fatal.

- Kimberly, WI, USA

problem #6

Jul 292014

Highlander Hybrid 6-cyl

  • 129,000 miles
My car had been making a chirping noise when I brake so I took it to a brake place and they put on new brake pads and rotors, about a week late all the lights on my dash came on saying everything was wrong, I called the brake place they said it was just a loose connection. About 2 months later I was slowing down to make a stop at a light approximately a half a football field away and my brakes just stopped working and I slid into the car in front of me.. I took it back to the brake place they said it was the hybrid system, from which there was a recall for my car. I took it to the Toyota dealer and they fixed the recall but then said my problem is the brake hydraulic actuator, a $2500 part! from what I understand it is the sensor that tells your brakes to operate when you press the brake pedal!!! then I started researching and it looks like others are having the same problem in the hybrid highlander in 2006 and 2007 makes!!! I put my car in my garage for the last 2 months because I simply do not have the money to fix this and now the battery is completely dead! when I drove it home from the dealership after they fixed the recall and told me the news about the actuator, it felt like I was driving on ice and really had no control of the brakes at all... I would think with the complaints I have seen about this, that this would be a recall issue, I mean when you press on the brake pedal and your brakes actually work, your car should stop!! this could really end up hurting someone!

- Naples, FL, USA

problem #5

May 012014

Highlander Hybrid 6-cyl

  • 96,000 miles
Brakes become momentarily unresponsive when stopping. Car lurches forward and additional force is needed on pedal to regain control. Appears to happen when braking system switches over from regenerative to friction. Happens at various speeds when trying to stop.

- Maplewood, MN, USA

problem #4

Oct 152008

Highlander Hybrid

  • 29,000 miles
I bought new a 2007 Highlander hybrid. The brakes have continually performed spongy and the accelerator would stick. I have had to drive with exaggerarted braking space to compensate. My wife has had three small accidents ( rear end due sudden stops in urban traffic setting. Over the years we have pressed darcars Toyota dealership in rockville md for assistance but they claimed no problem. Calls to Toyota usa were greeted with no help. Our insurance has been drastically increased we have tried to get the insurer, geico. To assist us in the defective braking problem and sticky accelerator. We are nearing the 5 year write off of those accidents. We have sideline the SUV and had to perchase a another Toyota ( prius )for my wife, a nurse. We have not had problems with accidents and braking ever before. We see the legal wrangling with the attorney general and Toyota but see no relief. We are two combat veterans of the gulf war and iraq war. We feels abandoned. A friend said to file the claim with your Agency. We are not hopeful. Sincerely lieutenant colonel [xxx], us army retired. And major[xxx], us army reserves. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6)

- Rockville , MD, USA

problem #3

Sep 052013

Highlander Hybrid 6-cyl

  • 24,700 miles
On Sept 5, 2013, I put my Toyota Highlander hybrid in reverse to straighten it up in a parking space, before I could even breathe, it took off in reverse going over 60 mi. An hour and I had no control over the car. It finally hit a garage from behind and took down the whole side of the garage and the front of the garage. Air bags never deployed. I was not injured except for a sore neck and right shoulder. They are just now pulling the black box from my car. No response from Toyota yet.[xxx] information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Folsom, CA, USA

problem #2

Aug 212013

Highlander Hybrid

  • 920,000 miles
At slow speed, entering my driveway, brakes failed, resulting in slight acceleration, causing an accident with our other vehicle in driveway.

- Oreland, PA, USA

problem #1

Dec 032012

Highlander Hybrid

  • 8,000 miles
After parking on an incline, in cold weather, with the emergency brake on, then starting up the car and driving slowly, the rear tires make a grinding noise. I have taken the car in to the dealer twice to address the issue, and they have completely replaced all the brake equipment and still the issue continues. They have suggested that I don't need to use my emergency brake when parking the car.

- Renton, WA, USA

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