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:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
38,650 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 seat belts / air bags problems

seat belts / air bags problem

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2005 Toyota Matrix Owner Comments (Page 7 of 8)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #24

Mar 242014


  • 98,000 miles


SRS airbag light comes on and off intermittently. Clock also goes in and out. Was told the clock and the SRS system are linked, and that when the light is on the airbag may not deploy. From doing research this is a very common problem in this car, and it is dangerous. Toyota couldn't diagnose problem, suggested replacing clock assembly.

- Melbourne, FL, USA

problem #23

Mar 312014


  • 79,999 miles
The airbag light is always on in the 2005 Toyota Matrix. This is due to the spiral cable malfunction and there is no recall for this issue from Toyota. With this lights on the airbag wont get deployed if there is a front end collision and its a security issue.

- Troy, MI, USA

problem #22

Feb 152014


  • 203,500 miles
Air bag spiral cable is damaged. After researching online, this seems to be a very common problem in Toyota Matrix, but no recall has been put into effect.

- Orange Beach, AL, USA

problem #21

Dec 112013


  • 80,000 miles


SRS airbag warning light is going on and off, so is the clock. This has happened many times and I find that other owners of this vehicle are having the same problem. There seems to be a connection between the clock and the airbag system being tied together.

- Albuquerque, NM, USA

problem #20

Mar 082012


  • 45,000 miles
About a year and a half ago the airbag warning light started to come on and off intermittently. I checked with the dealer and was offered to pay for a diagnostic. I decided to do research first and found a whole lot of other owners have this issue. Some have taken the car in for services including complete replacement of the airbag system and clock (which happens to have faulty circuit that can result in the warning light coming on and off intermittently.) some have paid over $1K in service fees. I contacted Toyota about it. They are not looking to own up to this quality defect. It's not a wear and tear (vehicle age) issue. The culprit appears to be a component that cracks off the pcb on the clock. Someone has reported having re-soldered this component to eliminate the intermittent airbag light issue. When will Toyota recall?

- San Diego, CA, USA

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problem #19

Nov 182013

Matrix 4-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
I already turned in an incident but did not get an E-mail or any reply back so am doing it again to make sure. My air bag light has been going on intermittently for 1.5 years. I was told by Toyota that it would cost $180 to diagnose the problem and was never told that when my air bag light was on that my air bag would not go off. I recently found this out so had it checked out. Turns out it is a faulty clock. Toyota has the clock as an integral part of their air bags. I can't believe that they put my family at risk because of a clock. It cost me $560 to fix as well. There was never any assistance on Toyota's part to assist me, lower the cost. My clock by the way works perfectly fine and it took them 1.5 hours to diagnose the problem.

- Plymouth, MN, USA

problem #18

Sep 102012


  • miles


Drivers side airbag warning light intermittently stays on since Sept. 2012, but now stays on most of the time since August 2013. This light means the air bag will not deploy in a collision. Waiting for a recall letter from Toyota. No recall yet for 2005 model and newer. This is also an issue with Toyota Matrix and corollas before 2005.

- Buffalo, NY, USA

problem #17

Sep 112013


  • 230,000 miles
Airbag light drivers side stays on.

- Cliffwood, NJ, USA

problem #16

May 012012


  • 60,000 miles
Our driver side SRS airbag warning light has been intermittently on for over a year. Sometimes it doesn't go out when the car is started and stays on while driving; other times it goes out like normal a few seconds after the car is started, but spontaneously comes on and stays on later while driving. Once it's on, I have to pull over and turn the ignition off, wait a few seconds, and then restart the car to get it to turn off. This is not always successful. The Toyota dealer was no help at all - couldn't find anything wrong, and said that I'd need to bring the car back when the light was actually on. Since the problem is inconsistent, I haven't been able to do that. I'm very afraid that someone in my family may be injured should we get in a collision, because I understand that if the light is on, the airbag is inoperable.

- Burlington, VT, USA

problem #15

Mar 072013


  • 98,000 miles
I was headed to work like I usually would M-F then out of no where the steering wheel had locked. This caused the car to loose control. The car all of a sudden was spinning around and eventually it flipped landing on its side. To top it off none of the air bags deployed! I was pulled out of the car my whole body aching, especially my arms. This was because I was holding on for dear life praying that I will come out of it alive. Luckily, no one was in the car but myself, but I know I do not need this to happen to me twice so I will no longer will purchase a Toyota.

- Moreno Valley , CA, USA

problem #14

Mar 212009


  • 99,000 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Toyota Matrix. The contact stated that the air bag warning light illuminated constantly. The vehicle was taken to the dealer, who stated that the electrical wiring for the air bags failed. The air bag control module for the supplement restraint also needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 99,000.

- Terril, IA, USA

problem #13

Jan 032012


  • 80,000 miles
Airbag warning light sometimes comes on and stays on. If I stop the car and remove the cap from the gasoline tank for a minute, the replace the cap and restart the car, the airbag light goes off. Airbag light may remain off for many days. Airbag light has been intermittent in this fashion for past 10,000 miles. No one seems to know why gas tank pressure should affect airbag warning light sensor system, but it appears to do precisely that. Airbag has never been deployed no vehicle accident has occurred. However the numerous internet complaints about the airbag light coming on in the 2005 Toyota Matrix at about 80,000 miles suggests a design defect on the part of Toyota. Local marin Toyota dealership (in san rafael, calif.) advises that if there is a collision when the airbag light is on, the airbag will not deploy.

- San Anselmo, CA, USA

problem #12

Dec 022012

Matrix 4-cyl

  • 174,000 miles
Recently my air bag light started coming on intermittently. After searching Toyota/matrix forums, I have found the 2003-2008 Toyota matrix has had numerous complaints regarding the air bag system. It is common for the clock to stop working, which cases the air bags to stop functioning properly. This also seems to be a common problem with the 2003-2008 corolla. I don't mind that my clock doesn't work; however, it is a safety issue if it is the cause of the air bag malfunction and Toyota should rectify the problem.

- Garner, NC, USA

problem #11

Jun 202012

Matrix 4-cyl

  • 77,000 miles
Air bag warning light comes on intermittently. Took car to dealer and was told that the air bag system will not operate while the warning light is on. I was also told that the problem could not be diagnosed or fixed.

- Plover, WI, USA

problem #10

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 #9

Sep 212011


  • 80,500 miles
This is going to be the third time I have brought my vehicle back to boch Toyota norwood MA. The airbag light is on they reset few days later came back on brought vehicle back October 5, 2011 reset again. I brought the vehicle back on October 13,2011 that told me that it could be the computer, wiring or the airbag assembly. I feel that there should be a recall correcting this situation.

- Pembroke, MA, USA

problem #8

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 #7

Jul 022011


  • 92,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Toyota Matrix. The contact stated that the air bag light was illuminated on the instrument panel on a consistent basis. The vehicle was inspected by an authorized dealer where they recoded the vehicle. The failure recurred a few days later. The vehicle was taken back to the authorized dealer where they were unable to diagnose the failure. The manufacturer was notified and advised the contact to take the vehicle back to the dealer. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was approximately 92,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Owington, CT, USA

problem #6

Oct 022008


  • miles
I own a 2005 Toyota Matrix and my airbag sensor is on. I have talked to and read about this brand car and that year car all have the same complaint. Why has this never been recalled? I have taken it to a mechanic but he said this is a complaint that everyone with the Matrix and the year 2005 have. You can find more about this by reading the internet under Toyota Matrix 2005. Thank you. Updated 05/12/11

- Steep Fall, Maine, ME, USA

problem #5

Aug 202010

Matrix 4-cyl

  • miles
2005 Toyota Matrix. Consumer states that the airbag system failed. Consumer sent in duplicate letter on 12/27/2010. The consumer stated the air bag light would illuminate intermittently. The consumer stated he paid $ $114.19 to diagnose and fix the problem by recalibrating the air bag system. The problem returned a few days later. The consumer then paid $ $559.42 to replace the air bag sensor assembly. The problem returned weeks later. The last repair was in the amount in $ $352.36 for the clock spring assembly.

- Slidell, LA, USA

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