Notes: If you're looking for a vehicle with one of the most complained about transmission on the road, look no further than the 2001-2003 Toyota RAV4.

In 2001 Toyota completely redesigned the popular SUV. While some enjoyed the new look, they did not enjoy the harsh shifting, jumping from gear-to-gear and eventual transmission failure that cost owners well over $3,000 to fix. The problem stems from a malfunctioning Electronic Control Module (ECM).

Consumer outrage coupled with pressure from different agencies led Toyota to extend the warranty nationwide back in 2010. The previous power train warranty only covered 5 years/60,000 miles, while the extended warranty now covers the transmission and ECM for 10 years/150,000 miles. Toyota also pledged to reimburse any owners who had previously paid for repairs, if they had "proper proof". Good luck collecting on that one.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
260,000 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.

2001 Toyota RAV4 lights problems

lights problem

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2001 Toyota RAV4 Owner Comments

problem #1

Feb 022005

RAV4 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 260,000 miles


Toyota rav 4 2001, headlights fog up after one year. They are a sealed unit. I have had them replaced 3 time now because of this problem. They are not cracked or damaged in any way. The headlights just fogg up after about 1 1/2 years. The cost of the headlights are $500 and to install them it's $180. After they fogg up, the light is dimmer on the night headlights and can't see very good when the light is so dim. I was told by the Toyota repair shop that this happens to the headlights all the time. Also on the Lexus model that they also make. He told me it was a problem that Toyota has not addressed. He just know that would happen again, because he replaces them all the time. That is unexceptible, the head should not be fogging up like that. Why hasn't Toyota mfg. Done something about this problem"??" please help me find out. Pleaseeeeee. Thank you.

- Mesa, AZ, USA

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