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.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
95,500 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 Matrix engine problems

engine problem

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2008 Toyota Matrix Owner Comments

problem #4

Dec 292016


  • 102,000 miles


The contact owns a 2008 Toyota Corolla matrix. While driving various speeds, the air bag warning indicator remained illuminated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer, but was not diagnosed or repaired. The VIN was included in NHTSA campaign number: 15V285000 (air bags). While driving approximately 50 mph, the engine warning indicator illuminated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the engine had a system leak, incorrect power fluid, and a cross leak that needed to be repaired. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 102,000.

- Dover, NJ, USA

problem #3

Apr 012015


  • 114,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Toyota Matrix. The contact stated that while driving approximately 30 mph and attempting to accelerate, the accelerator pedal failed to respond. The contact attempted to pull over and discovered that the steering wheel was difficult to turn after the engine and power steering fluid warning indicators illuminated. The vehicle was powered off and back on, the warning indicators were no longer illuminated and the vehicle was able to be driven. The failure recurred on several occasions. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic. The technician diagnosed that the engine control module was faulty and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was then taken to a dealer and was repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure and stated that the VIN was not included in NHTSA campaign number: 10V384000 (engine and engine cooling). The approximate failure mileage was 114,000.

- Boyds, MD, USA

problem #2

Oct 102014

Matrix 4-cyl

  • miles
We bought the car used in ga August 2012, 3 months later the engine would come on but electrics wouldn't, move out of park. The dealer couldn't re create the problem to find out what was wrong so we delt with it for months until the power shut off on the hwy. It scared us. It quickly shut back on thank god but we been in touch with corporate and the dealership without any luck or help on fixing it. Finally July they said it was the ECM and tried to charge us to fix it. 3 weeks later the stalling continued. We were sent here by a friend and just now 2 years later find out about the recall. We also found out the same dealership where we took to fix it that couldn't identify the problem was the same one that fixed it initially for the recall. Now corporate and the dealership is denying that they fixed the ECM in July though I have an invoice stating so. Also, denying there was ever a recall. Its dangerous and terrifying to drive not knowing when and where the engine will stall. It was fixed 2012 a few months before we bought it, fixed again this passed July supposedly but is still stalling so its a recurring problem. Hopefully the proper procedure is followed to ensure the safety of my family and who ever the next owner will be.

- Lithonia, GA, USA

problem #1

Sep 152014


  • 166,000 miles
Engine over-heated to the point where the head gasket blew. Dealership said it was due to chronic overheating but temperature gauges never indicated any issue and the check engine light did not come on until 2 minutes before the car broke down. Potential problem with the monitoring system. Routine maintenance (oil change, fluids checked, etc.) was done less than 2 weeks prior to incident.

- Lake Jackson, TX, USA

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