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.


fairly significant
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
72,000 miles
Total Complaints:
1 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace flex plate and torque converter (1 reports)
2001 Toyota RAV4 transmission problems

transmission problem

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2001 Toyota RAV4 Owner Comments

problem #1

Jan 062008

RAV4 L 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,000 miles


Rav 4wd 2001 model had engine replaced at 47000 miles under warranty at Lynch Toyota, Manchester, CT. Diagnosed with cracked flex plate by Meineke in January 2008 with 72000 miles on clock. Rav was repaired at Aamco (I have very high praise for their service and support to date) and they provided a written report that when engine was replaced by Lynch an alignment dowel was cut off which caused the engine to be misaligned and caused the flex plate to crack and damage the torque converter. Lynch accept no responsibility for the cracked flex plate and state that if they had not done their job properly replacing the engine it would have happened much sooner. Their service manager Vern Fortin also stated that in his opinion it cracked due to poor material composition. I have yet to find one other instance of a cracked flex plate on a Toyota Rav 4 2001 model.

- , Glastonbury, CT, USA

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