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.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
33,000 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.

2002 Toyota RAV4 seat belts / air bags problems

seat belts / air bags problem

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2002 Toyota RAV4 Owner Comments

problem #1

Jun 262015


  • 33,000 miles


Takata recall: I was involved in a head-0N collision and my air bags did not deflate like they were supposed to. The other vehicle that hit me, their airbags deflated. I was going approximately 45 mph and the impact pushed everything back from the front end of my vehicle, which blocked the doors so that we could not get out of the vehicle. The accident was the other parties fault and she was cited for the accident. I received several injuries which resulted with me being in the hospital for several days. The police officers, the ambulance people and the fire department people all wondered why my airbags did not deploy when the accident happened. All of the professional people on the accident scene said that my airbags were probably made by takata and were defective. As the result of my airbags not deploying caused me to have extensive injuries and I am having to have physical therapy on my left arm and hand. I would like for the NHTSA to perform a check on the Toyota Rav4 2002 SUV's to see if they also should have been included in the recall. As the result of the accident, my SUV was totaled and it only had 33,000 miles on it.

- Elkview, WV, USA

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