really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
54,380 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 Prius brakes problems

brakes problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2005 Toyota Prius:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2005 Toyota Prius Owner Comments

problem #17

Sep 042016


  • 50,000 miles


Motor wont shut off

- Delray Beach, FL, USA

problem #16

Feb 012015


  • 91,000 miles
The automatic braking system (ABS), vehicle stability control (vsc), brake light, and brake system warning lights (4) on the Prius all came on and vehicle became very unstable while out of town. The owner's manual indicated that the dealership should be contacted and car should be taken in immediately for service. Since no dealership was available at the immediate location, the car was driven home (60 miles) in very unstable conditions. Upon bringing it to the dealership I was told it was a miracle nothing bad had happened because the "computer skid assembly" needed to be replaced at a cost of $1570.97 for just the part!!! I found it very interesting that the part was readily available as if I were replacing an oil or air filter. After confirming the cost with other dealerships, I consented to the work to be performed. Is this just another "built in obsolescence" feature? there appears to be nothing I could have done to properly maintain this new piece of technology and the sudden failure of the part posses a significant safety concern to consumers. In addition, how can any reasonable consumer be certain that this part failure was not input by the manufacturer into the car's control system. Makes me long for the days of manual vehicles and shade tree mechanics.

- Portland, OR, USA

problem #15

Jun 302014

Prius 4-cyl

  • 80,800 miles
In 2007, we purchased a certified used Toyota Prius 2005 with 13,298 miles. We have owned this car ever since. We currently have about 81,000 miles on this vehicle. Brake failure incident on June 30, 2014, I was driving the 2005 Prius slowly (10-15 mph) along a roadway located in a tecumseh, mi city park: as the car approached a local street, I braked for a stop before making a right-hand turn. As I engaged the brake, the ABS system red light appeared, the red brake light was lit and the related buzzer was activated as well. as I braked, my right foot went all the way to the floor. I experienced complete and total brake failure. I finally stopped the car with the emergency brake. I drove the Prius very slowly over the two miles home, using the emergency brake to stop as needed. my wife and daughter were riding with me in the car and witnessed the incident. On July 1, 2014, I contacted aaa and arranged to have the car towed to a repair shop in ann arbor, mi 30 miles away. After a week, at the repair shop I arranged to have the vehicle towed to the local Toyota service facility. Over the previous five months, I experienced another curious problem that may be brake related. When braking on bumpy roads (we have horrible pot holes on many major streets and roads) or curb cuts, the car accelerates ever so briefly. The feeling of loss of control is very disturbing. It remains to be seen if this problem is related to the brake failure noted above. There were no injuries as a result of this brake failure. However, I had just returned home from business in a neighboring community 35 miles away. I often drive backcountry county roads with posted speeds of 55 mph. If I had experienced the brake failure then, I might well have been killed along with others.

- Tecumseh, MI, USA

problem #14

Jun 282012


  • 60,938 miles


I am the first owner of this 2005 Prius and have kept up with all maintenance and recall issues. This is my first complaint. On a perfectly fine weather day, I was driving my usual route home coming to a line of stopped cars in the left turn lane on a relatively flat, unbumpy surface street and was about 1 car length from the stopped car in front of me when I applied my brake. To my astonishment, with the brake fully engaged, my car kept going forward as if I had no brakes and rear ended the car ahead of me. Luckily neither of us were hurt as I had already slowed down for the stop. There was no damage to my car (my license plate holder hit her bumper and caused a couple of paint chips on hers, which will probably cost me thousands of dollars to repair) but I can tell you I was thoroughly shaken up. No emergency lights or code lights went on inside the car. From reading other complaints on this site, I see this is not a new problem. I will be reporting this to my Toyota dealer and to Toyota.

- Oakland, CA, USA

problem #13

Nov 212010


  • 50,000 miles
We have noticed repeatedly (a dozen or more times) over three years of owning this car and 100K miles, that as we brake going over a bumpy section of road, the braking system fails and the car actually accelerates for one or two seconds. This is especially alarming when we need to brake suddenly in a curve on a bumpy road as it seems we will lose control of the car. I always brake with my right foot and my right foot remains off the accelerator and on the brake throughout these episodes. Our car is equipped with the vehicle stability system and the passenger notices that the stability system warning light comes on during these episodes. It is not simply that the car coasts when the braking fails, the engine actually sounds like it is revving up and the car noticeably speeds up. Once the bumpy section has been passed, normal braking resumes. This has nothing to do with the floor mat. This situation should be reproducible thru testing.

- Cary, NC, USA

problem #12

Sep 012008


  • 135,000 miles
I first reported this to Toyota March 10, 2010. I did so after talking with a coworker who had a 2010 Prius. I have a 2005 Prius. We both experienced the same thing. Therefore, I figured I should take it more serious. The Toyota's safety incident number is [xxx]. when going over bumps and hitting the breaks I notice that instead of immediately slowing the car down, the car seems to either not slow at all and seems to accelerate. Knowing that going over bumps can cause a tire to temporarily loose contact with the road surface and that cars can electronically transfer drive from a tire that looses contact with the surface to the other wheel, there may be mixed signals happening. The brakes telling the car to stop, the traction control telling the acceleration to transfer. It seems the acceleration is taking precedence. Regardless, this seems that it could cause a problem if on a bumpy road surface or a pot hole or something and a car stops infront of me or a kid runs into the street or for some other reason I need to stop. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Leesburg, VA, USA

problem #11

Aug 042010


  • 62,794 miles


August 4, 2010 around 8:36pm I was on I4 heading eastbound about 13 miles from my house going around 66mph. The driving conditions were hot with no rain. When my emergency light, explanation mark light and the vsc light all came on at the same time and my car experience a jerking liking motion. I called my father immediately told him what's happening, he told me to turn around and get the car home. I turned around and as I was on my way home after exiting I4 on sand lake rd my brake light came on with a loud continuous beeping noise that lasted about 20 seconds every 2 minutes. When this loud beeping noise occurred the brakes would stop working for about 10 seconds than start again. I made it home at 8:52pm and parked the car in the garage.

- Orlando, FL, USA

problem #10

May 032010


  • 70,522 miles
I have this problem ever since I bought the car in 2004. The skid light comes on everytime I hit an uneven road surface feeling like IM driving in the snow and icy road. On the way home while making a turn, the car hesitated when I stepped on the gas and the warning lights for brake, vsc, trac, and ABS came on. I brought it to the dealership and the service representative told me it was the wheel sensor, that my rear right tire is not being sensed, but the rest were. It did not correct the problem of the warning lights in the dashboard; and with further diagnosis, they found out it was the skid control computer assembly. I felt robbed by spending money on the wheel sensor that was replaced when all the while it was the skid control ECM was the problem.

- Cypress, TX, USA

problem #9

Apr 172010


  • 90,000 miles
48 mph traveling North on or 217; without cause and simultaneously brake warning light on ABS warning light on vsc warning light on audible alarm steady tone then try to stop: Brake pedal up high, brake pedal unresponsive and hard to press, immediately pulled of on allen exit; brakes still unresponsive, pressed maximum force on brake pedal brakes locked up the wheels skidding and burning rubber.

- Portland, OR, USA

problem #8

Mar 032010


  • 81,000 miles
Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6) 2005 Toyota Prius [xxx] when braking on uneven/bumpy road (even freeway lane divider bumps), skid light come on and braking force is reduced. Has happened at both low and high speeds. No issue on smooth roads. Has occured several times, over several years, have never had the brakes serviced. Last occured 3/3/2010.

- Thousand Oaks, CA, USA

problem #7

Feb 282010


  • miles


1 - my right headlight keeps going on and off while I am driving. I received a ticket that I now have to pay for. The los angeles times mentioned that other cars have this problem. It should be easy for the manufacturer to fix at their expense. 2 - since I purchased my 2005 Prius in 2004, when I go over bumps, sometimes the light for the stability comes on and the brakes do not work for a second or two. I had asked when the car was serviced and was told there was nothing wrong. I guess we know better now. 3 - sometimes the two front tires lose traction and make a noise while spinning, before the car moves. 4 - if my car was under the "carpet" recall, why is it that it is not listed under the recall for the gas pedal? 5 - two of my locks are not working. One is the front passenger an one in the back.

- San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #6

Dec 122009


  • 67,000 miles
I have a 2005 Toyota Prius and my brakes slip whenever a front tire drops onto an uneven surface. It seems to be the exact problem described as happening to the 2010 models. I have had it happen several times as I live on a gravel road and when I turn onto my road it is an uneven surface. It has happened numerous times, to the point that I anticipate the occurrence when on an uneven surface. I think that I could recreate the occurrence if needed. (the date listed below is just one of several) also, the light showing that vehicle stabilization is on lights up whenever this happens.

- Woodstock, GA, USA

problem #5

Jan 242005


  • 100 miles
Braking on 2005 Toyota Prius. When slowing to a stop and you hit a bumpy surface or manhole cover the antilock brakes go off and the brakes release for approximately 1-2 seconds and you feel as if you are skidding on ice.

- Havertown, PA, USA

problem #4

Feb 052010


  • 100 miles
This is an ongoing problem with a 2005 Prius. If you hit a bump or pothole while braking from a normal speed, the car will briefly accelerate on its own. This causes additional braking pressure to be needed and precise steering. Many Prius owners since 2004 have indicated this problem.

- Ewing, NJ, USA

problem #3

Feb 022010


  • 85,200 miles
I bought a new Toyota Prius in 2005. When the vehicle rides over uneven pavement the stability control makes the car quickly lurch forward. This has happened dozens of times over the past five years. Recently, I have had a problem with my brakes in icy conditions. I was cruising at about 15 mph to a stop sign, not on snow, it was just below freezing that day, when I applied the foot brake I felt no resistance in the pedal. I could feel the ABS system disengage for about 3 seconds. I could not stop the car using the brakes so I rolled to a stop. This happened again a few minutes later.

- Brooklyn, NY, USA

problem #2

Apr 062008


  • miles
ABS & stability control lights stay on. Dealer says that systems are faulty. Not a warranty repair!!??!!! N.B.: it would help consumers if your complaint-search function would allow simultaneous searches for model of multiple years; and, for keywords so that results would appear regardless of whether complainant has chosen a different--or, even, an incorrect--category of equipment.

- Lt., NY, USA

problem #1

Jan 012008


  • miles
'05 Toyota Prius. Chronic failure of antilock brakes and of vehicle stability control. Toyota dealers repair shop claims that this is to be fixed at my expense. Seems to me that important safety defects should be repaired for free. How many like-complaints have you rec'd.?

- Nr, NY, USA

Not what you are looking for?