really awful
Crashes / Fires:
24 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
7 / 0
Average Mileage:
52,900 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.

2010 Toyota Prius brakes problems

brakes problem

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2010 Toyota Prius Owner Comments (Page 7 of 10)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #68

Sep 282012

Prius 4-cyl

  • 27,000 miles


Vehicle activates ABS while stopping and brake disengages, causing vehicle to not stop when brakes are applied unless brakes are reapplied, potentially leading to accidents due to braking failure. Dealership is not addressing the issue in a timely manner. Delaying this recall months might lead to accidents affecting all passengers, including children. Continued delay of this matter could lead to legal action due to an inability on behalf of the Toyota company and dealerships to promptly fix a severe and dangerous problem.

- Hartford, CT, USA

problem #67

Jul 012009

Prius 4-cyl

  • 500 miles
The ABS system on my 2010 Prius seems to release the brake when applied on rough surfaces going downhill which gives a sense of acceleration and lack of vehicle control. The same effect occurs when driving on some level surfaces. I have recently read dozens of accounts about the Prius brakes acting this way as far back as 2006 models. I'm am now concerned about the brake system integrity when I drive and feel strongly that the NHTSA should initiate an in depth investigation into this situation.

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #66

Sep 162013


  • 35,000 miles
Coming to a stop light, I applied the brakes. This has been an ongoing issue with my car that when applying the brakes and a bump in the road is detected, the car supposedly switches to ABS braking. The net effect of it is that the brakes temporarily disengage causing the car to accelerate for a brief period until you reapply the brakes and eventually come to a stop. So as a result, the from the moment you apply the brakes to the time you stop, there is a "lurching forward" of about 5 feet under which you have no control over the car. That is quite scary since if per chance a person were crossing the road while your car hit a bump in the road, your vehicle could theoretically hit the person before the brakes had a chance to kick in. I've checked the blogs and have noticed that people with priuses from various years have reported the same problem. I noticed this problem early on in my ownership of the car, and actually asked the dealer to fix the problem. They reported to me that everything was working properly. I then asked them to test drive it for a while to reproduce the problem. They had my car for a week and supposedly were unable to reproduce the problem. There was an ABS recall by Prius and they supposedly applied the fix to my car, but I have since noticed the same issue.

- Parsippany, NJ, USA

problem #65

Oct 102013

Prius 4-cyl

  • 20,400 miles


Car fails to stop on bumpy surfaces. Street under construction was covered with metal plates with bumpy surface (the ridges are arranged in squares and I think are less than an inch high; they are not the plates with a smooth surface). As the car went over the plates, braking failed. The plates ended a short distance before the traffic signal and regular pavement resumed. I was barely able to stop in time. I checked online and I see that other people have the same problem. Someone suggested the anti-lock braking system. This happened on S. leimert blvd. Approaching vernon, but these plates are all over this part of los angeles.

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #64

Oct 012013

Prius 4-cyl

  • 65,000 miles
Bought this car certified used from Toyota dealer in mid-May 2013. First Prius I've owned, and not used to driving it, so the first couple times it 'lurched forward' with the brakes on, I was surprised, but figured it was just related to the 'hybrid'. it happened again last week at a stop sign with rough road - braking, hit bumps, and brakes disappear! took it into dealer this morning, and they're saying it's 'normal'. then I start researching and while car is not included in any recalls, it's the same problem investigated in ntsb 10V039000. Exactly! car is still at dealer, as I have asked to speak to service mgr. And just in news today, supreme court is allowing calif 2010 Prius owners to sue Toyota over a bogus fix for this problem. Not sure what to do, but not going to let up on this. Half dozen times in 4 months this has happened, and I like the feeling less every time. Anything I can do? (when you all get back to work).

- Columbia, MD, USA

problem #63

Sep 132013

Prius 4-cyl

  • 67,005 miles
Received safety recall notice from Toyota motor sales usa. Made appointment with libertyville Toyota (autonation Toyota libertyville in libertyville, Illinois), the dealer from whom I bought the car. On 9/13/13 libertyville Toyota inspected my vehicle and advised me that the serial number on the brake booster pump assembly was on the recall list that required replacement. I was told none were in stock but it should take 2 or 3 days for the order to come and that I would be phoned "around the middle of next week." No call came so I phoned libertyville Toyota on 9/24/13. The receptionist directed my call to the parts department. The parts person who took my call told me that the part was not in their stock and that there was no estimated time of arrival (eta) for the part. He said he had no idea whether or when the part would be available. I asked to speak to the manager so he transferred me to the service manager ([xxx]). [xxx] didn't pick up so I left a fairly detailed message and asked him to call me back. It's now 9/30/13 and I have not been called by [xxx] or anyone at libertyville Toyota. In the meantime I'm driving a vehicle that is subject to a safety recall, the severity of which I have no idea, and I'm planning a trip with the vehicle that will entail approximately 3,000 miles of driving. What am I to do? information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Buffalo Grove, IL, USA

problem #62

Aug 152013


  • 36,000 miles


The contact owns a 2010 Toyota Prius.the contact stated that while driving 25 mph over a road bump and the vehicle lunged forward abnormally. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for inspection but they could not diagnose the cause of failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 36,000.

- Norwalk, CT, USA

problem #61

May 012011

Prius 4-cyl

  • 5,000 miles
This vehicle should be part of the larger Toyota recall on brakes that was announced earlier this year. After a few thousand miles, I noticed that the brakes gave way if the Prius hits a bump or pothole. Toyota's statement that "customers are perceiving inconsistent brake feel during slow and steady application of the brakes on rough or slick road surfaces" is an understatement. The brakes don't actually work when you are decelerating and hit a bump, which is problematic when you live in a city notorious for potholes. I reported this issue early on to my dealer, and have since followed up, each time being met with the same response: There are no reports on this issue. For whatever reason, Toyota feels that only certain VIN lot numbers merit the recall, but I can assure them the problem is more widespread. Most owners I've talked to have tried to accommodate the problem by being aware of bumps when coming to a stop, but at some point someone will injure or kill someone else as a result of this braking issue.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #60

Apr 012011


  • 5,000 miles
This incident has occurred numerous times since purchasing the car, but it wasn't until last week (9/6/2013) that I became terrified as I almost hit another vehicle in front of me. Whenever my Prius runs over a pothole, bump, uneven surface, or deep manhole cover as I am braking towards an intersection to come to a stop (for me, all these incidents occurred when I approached an intersection) the brakes stop working for a brief moment and suddenly my car jerks forward, lurches forward, or accelerates. I have to press down my brakes really hard to the floor to stop the vehicle when this happens. When this fails, I immediately release the brake and re-apply very hard to the floor to stop the car. In these moments it becomes scary as I am never sure if the car will come to a stop before the intersection. Last week, I was approaching a busy intersection while braking and I ran over a uneven pothole cover/filler at about 5 to 15 mph which caused my car to accelerate to like 20 or 25 mph! I had to brake very hard in order to stop my car and swerve to the right to avoid hitting the car in front of me. This problem only occurs when my right side tires hit the uneven surface, manhole cover, potholes, bumps, etc. I have not had an incident where it happened with the left tires. Toyota service has said there is no problem with my car's brakes and therefore said they can't fix anything. There is a problem with Toyota's Prius braking system.

- Springfield, VA, USA

problem #59

Aug 062013

Prius 4-cyl

  • 20,000 miles
This incident has occurred twice under identical conditions, in the same location. The car did not engage the brakes until approximately one second after I depressed the pedal. Maybe the computer's electronic stability control is involved in the problem, even though the car did not indicate that electronic stability control was engaged. Both times I was driving on a slight downhill at ~20 mph. Immediately after I passed over some bumps, I depressed the brakes, and there was a significant delay in the brakes being engaged (1S). I think the bumps in the road are involved in this issue. Of note, this car underwent an update to its software program following a recall involving braking problems, and these incidents occurred after the update.

- Atlanta, GA, USA

problem #58

Jan 012009


  • 2,000 miles


The contact owns a 2010 Toyota Prius. The contact stated that the brake delayed to engage while decelerating. The contact was able to steer the steering wheel away and avoid crashing into another vehicle. The vehicle was taken to the dealer several times for the failure and a diagnostic was performed, which indicated that the computer system needed to be reset. The computer system was reset but the failure was not corrected. The vehicle was also test driven, but the failure did not duplicate. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was not available. The failure mileage was 2,000 and the current mileage was 35,000.

- White Plains , NY, USA

problem #57

Aug 192013


  • 5,000 miles
While braking over an uneven surface coming up to a stop light, the car lurched forward, causing it to seemingly accelerate into the crosswalk. I was coasting up to the stoplight and applied the brakes closer to the light, as the car was traveling over the uneven surface. The uneven surface was caused by raised metal plates covering road construction. The vehicle was traveling about 5-10 mph and decelerating at the time of the incident. This has happened with regular consistency even though the car got the software fix within a few months of purchase in 2010. It mostly happens decelerating over potholes in the road, when going from coasting (regenerative breaking) to applying the brakes by foot.

- Cincinnati, OH, USA

problem #56

Jan 192011

Prius 4-cyl

  • 10,000 miles
When braking, such as when approaching a stop sign or stop light, in the presence of bumps, potholes, or rough/uneven road surfaces, the car noticeably and forcefully "lurches forward", and there is momentary loss of control of the vehicle's stopping mechanism....updated 02-03-15

- Merrillville, IN, USA

problem #55

Dec 132010

Prius 4-cyl

  • miles
While braking at low speeds -- such as while approaching a traffic light or an intersection -- passing over a pothole or uneven road surface often causes the brakes to disengage. The sensation is one in which my foot is in the same place as it was when I began braking, but suddenly there is no give to the pedal, the braking has stopped -- braking does not return until I push further down on the pedal. My foot is not dislodged by the bump, and the braking mechanism will not re-engage unless I push the pedal to a new, deeper location. It is obviously disconcerting at intersections, and since moving to a new location and having to re-learn where on my routes this problem will occur, I decided it was time to file a complaint. The frustration is that this issue was supposedly solved a couple years ago with a software fix from Toyota, but that fix seems to not have worked. I filed a complaint about the Prius problem with some Agency (possibly NHTSA or ftc) a few years ago when the other, more notable, brake-sticking problem in other Toyota was in the news. This particular issue is quite different. Note: The date of first incidence is approximate, but the problem persists.

- Prairie Grove, AR, USA

problem #54

Aug 132013


  • 27,000 miles
I was driving car about 25 miles P H and sandalee the ABS lights came up and its was ready hard to stop the car somehow break wasn't working properly.

- Catonsville , MD, USA

problem #53

Mar 042013

Prius 4-cyl

  • 34,000 miles
When I try to brake, occasionally, the car jumps forward, instead of stopping. It moves like 6 inches to 12 inches. It happens more often when I try to brake at a stop sign, when the road is rough, or there is a pothole. It gives a feeling of that car actually accelerated instead of slowing, and feels unsafe.

- Belle Mead, NJ, USA

problem #52

Oct 152012

Prius 4-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
This has happened atleast 4 times in the last year, where the car has lost complete braking power and at the time this happens, all the lights on the dashboard light up for a few seconds and on subsequent pumping of the brake pedal, the brake power returns to normal. On one occasion I almost ended up in the middle of an intersection, thankfully there was no oncoming traffic and was able to recover without getting crashed into. I see a lot of similar complaints here and on Toyota's own community portal describing the exact same behavior. In all cases, the dealership has ended up replacing the brake booster assembly. In my case though, the dealer confirmed that my car was on the recall list for the brake booster assembly, but when they ran some diagnostics tests advised by Toyota which did not report any issues and therefore refused to change the brake booster assembly. I also contacted Toyota (case# [xxx]) only to be told a wishy washy answer. I was told that Toyota cannot do anything about it since it has given guidelines to the dealership and if the dealership says "no" then so does "Toyota". not to mention having spent hours on the phone with Toyota only to be tossed several times between different supports reps and the dealership. Additionally, I was told by the dealership to keep driving the car and see if it was to happen more often. Once it gets to a point where I can find a pattern and reproduce the error with the Toyota rep that's then they will look into the issue. For some reason they fail to understand that I am not complaining about my wiper blades not working but the brakes, which could put the diver in a life threatening situation. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Santa Clara, CA, USA

problem #51

Jan 152013


  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,000 miles
The contact owns a 2010 Toyota Prius. The contact stated that the ABS and anti-skid warning lamps illuminated while the contact was driving 40 mph. The brake pedal was depressed however, the brakes failed. The emergency brake was used to stop the vehicle. The vehicle was taken to the dealer and diagnosed as brake failure. The master cylinder and the brake booster assembly were replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 50,000. Updated 8/26/13 the consumer stated Toyota admitted to installing a faulty brake pump. The consumer is seeking reimbursement. The consumer referenced recall # 13V235000. Updated 09/10/13

- Louisville, KY, USA

problem #50

Jun 182013

Prius 4-cyl

  • 75,000 miles
On 6-18-13 at 9:45 am, at NJ turn-pike South, milestone 108.3, newark, NJ. I, owner of the Toyota Prius 201, driving at 45 mph pushed the brake pedal to the floor to stop but could not. I hit the back of the vehicle front of me suddenly stopped. My 2010 Prius was total lost in this accident. According to the Toyota 6-4-13 recall announcement, my 2010 Prius in the recall list is equipped with a brake pressure accumulator that may develop a fatigue crack on an internal part due to vibration that caused my failure to stop completely in this car rear-end collision accident on 6-18-13.

- Fort Lee, NJ, USA

problem #49

Jun 282013

Prius 4-cyl

  • 46,000 miles
The contact owns a 2010 Toyota Prius. The contact stated that while driving approximately 35 mph, the brakes would not respond. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for diagnosis. The technician stated that nitrogen gas was leaking into the brake fluid. There was a recall under NHTSA campaign number: 13V235000 (service brakes) that could have been related to the failure. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure and stated that the VIN was not included in the recall. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 46,000.

- Hunington Beach, CA, USA

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