Notes: The Toyota Matrix is the mechanical twin of the Pontiac Vibe.

Both models were a joint GM-Toyota venture, manufactured together at a NUMMI production facility in Fremont, CA. Only the heating & A/C systems are different.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
60,356 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.

2005 Toyota Matrix electrical problems

electrical problem

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2005 Toyota Matrix Owner Comments (Page 2 of 2)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #8

Feb 012011


  • miles


Clock is intermittent and air bag warning comes on frequently.. heater control lights are also intermittent.. have asked dealership to fix these items and they have not.. gave up after the third attempt.

- Spokane, WA, USA

problem #7

Mar 172011

Matrix 4-cyl

  • 92,406 miles
Air bag light came on repeatedly over a period of months. On 17mar2011 Toyota dealer diagnosed two possible causes... computer or clock assembly. Computer was replaced under extended warranty. Problem returned the next day. Clock was replaced on 30mar2011 under extended warranty. Problem seems to be solved as of 12jul2011.

- Cuyahoga Falls, OH, USA

problem #6

Mar 252010


  • 94,000 miles
After reaching 94,000 miles mark like what some other Toyota Matrix owners experienced, there was a harsh in the transmission when you shift to reverse and the check engine light is on.

- Burbank, CA, USA

problem #5

Jun 282010


  • 88,713 miles


2005 Toyota Matrix with automatic transmission had check engine light come and immediately start shifting hard. No prior symptoms. Called Toyota service they said it was a loose gas cap, I asked are you sure it has nothing to do with transmission because when the light is on it shifts harshly. No pretty sure it is gas cap if it comes back on you have to pay $110 to check it. After it came back on drove for a week to see if problem continued then took to transmission specialist who said it had pressure control solenoid out. Took it for second opinion to transmission repair shop and they said it is common problem with Toyota Matrix and corolla similar to rav4 problem that ECM is bad and causes transmission issues which in this case cause damage to transmission. Called Toyota and pointed out that Toyota service bulletin TC014-06 and tc-015-07 state that if the check engine light comes on and there is harsh shifting to change the ECM out with a different part number. They agreed that if my car had exhibited these symptoms at under 80,000 miles they would have replaced the ECM under warranty because it has been improved to not do this. They said the unit could be replace now at 88,000 miles at a cost to me and they would not help me with the cost of the defective unit or the transmission damage it caused.

- Ventura, CA, USA

problem #4

Apr 142010


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Letter from senator on behalf of constituent. Re difficulties with her 2005 Toyota Matrix. The consumer stated the brakes were defective due to the rotor getting caught in the brake pad. The problem continued after the second brake repair. The brakes made an audible squeaking noise when depressed. There was a loud noise every time the vehicle was started and the gears were engaged. The ABS did not work on an irregular surface. A defective rear axle caused damage to the tires. The lights would go out by themselves when it was dark.

- Seattle, WA, USA

problem #3

Oct 292009


  • 1,000 miles
I own a 2005 Toyota Matrix. On 10/29/09 they had to replace the whole computer system. Mechanic said that they had trouble with alot of the Matrixs and corollas. Cost me about $1000 to replace. My clock has been coming on every so often, but mostly stays off.the doors are not suppose to lock if key is in ignition or running. Three times it has locked me out. The dash board lights are medded up only half light up, this has been this way for well over a year. When I took it to the dealer when I had the work done they never fixed it. I think that someone should look into this matter because if they had to replace the computer on so many cars they should have a recall. Also, my pedal got stuck and caused me to run into a snow bank and mess up my front fender.

- Baltimore, MD, USA

problem #2

Mar 242008


  • 87,000 miles
I am the original owner of a 2005 Toyota Matrix with 88K miles. The ECM in the vehicle(model 89661-01132) died. The dealer says this is a common problem with this series of ECM parts and they will install a new "updated" version (model 89661-02K41) for a mere $650. From searching online it appears to be a fairly widespread problem among Toyota Matrix owners and yet Toyota has not issued a recall for these faulty ecms and the dealer is refusing to replace ECM outside of the federally mandated warranty period. All auto manufacturers are required by the epa to warranty ecms to 80K miles but this is obviously a huge problem and Toyota is failing to take responsibility for a shoddy batch of ecms.

- Chula Vista, CA, USA

problem #1

Oct 282006

Matrix 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
I have been told by several people that after I start my 2005 matrix xr up at night and begin to drive away that my tail lights do not come on for approximately 30 seconds. I have noticed a delay in some of the dash lights coming on, but was unaware of the tail light situation until it was brought to my attention. This happens each time that the car is started. I have not taken it to a dealer to have it checked out.

- Fort Dodge, IA, USA

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