really awful
Crashes / Fires:
10 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
28,553 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.

2006 Toyota RAV4 engine problems

engine problem

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2006 Toyota RAV4 Owner Comments (Page 1 of 4)

problem #66

Jan 132014

RAV4 4WD 6-cyl

  • 100,000 miles


1/30/14 recall part - rear lower suspension arm repaired by handy. Shortly after (1-3 months) I noticed swerve/sway during hard right turns. I suspected bad or underinflated tire on drivers side rear. Checked all tire inflation and lug nut tightness but the swerve/sway continued. On 10/16/14 I had (4) new snow tires installed at sumner tire in newport/derby, vt. I thought it would eliminate the problem but the swerve/sway continued. On 10/21/14 I had local mechanic perform a four wheel alignment. The mechanic could not make the adjust but confirmed drivers side rear was out of alignment. On 1/16/15 I made an appointment at handy to resolve this and other issues. Handy offered free labor if I paid $309.43 for parts to replace the failed recall. Within a few days I contacted national Toyota customer service and spoke to [xxx]. ref #can't be entered as it flags as a ss number. [xxx] called back to state that handy should be contacting me by end of the week concerning this issue. Received a on-line survey only in which I made clear that I should not have to pay for a failed recall item that was not fixed properly. I called national C.S. again two weeks later to report that I have not received any contact from handy. After that call, still no contact was received. I called handy (3) times asking to speak to the service manager, [xxx], who was always busy. I finally received a call back from a service technician, [xxx], with a lower offer for the cost of the parts to fix the recall of $226.03. I called handy back stating that I felt their offer was not acceptable and that I would be filing a complaint with the BBB for assistance. My point in all of this is that Toyota issued a recall for this part and the recall failed and should not be repaired at the consumer's cost. This is a safety concern of mine as well and limits the use of my vehicle for long trips. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Troy, VT, USA

problem #65

Sep 032014


  • 98,000 miles
Driving down road at 20-25 mph. Suddenly the right front wheel locked up (brake pedal was* being pressed) and began the ABS shudder as if vehicle was braking on ice. Vehicle pulled hard to the right; this occurred several times over the next few minutes. After car warmed up it didn't happen again, but recurred the next morning after starting out. Searched internet and found other Toyota drivers had experienced the same problem and 'resolved' it by removing fuses for ABS braking system, rendering it inoperative. Car brakes normally now with no issues, but ABS, brakes, vsc and other dash lights are on because ABS system is disabled.

- American Fork, UT, USA

problem #64

Apr 102014

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 122,300 miles
This has happened to me three times and to my wife once. As we begin to accelerate, either from a stop or as we are accelerating, we have a pause in acceleration. If feels like we are not pushing on the gas but that is not it. Once the gas pedal is released and we re-accelerate, the car moves forward normally. It has been very scary when someone is approaching and the gas does not move us forward. This has not happened in reverse.

- Hillsboro, OR, USA

problem #63

May 022014


  • 16,000 miles


The contact owns a 2006 Toyota rav-4. the contact stated that while driving 5 mph, the brakes were applied and the vehicle abnormally accelerated and crashed into objects in a residential garage. There were no injuries and the police were not called. The contact stated that the failure recurred three additional times. The vehicle was taken to the dealer but was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 16,000. The VIN was not available.

- Killsborough, NJ, USA

problem #62

Sep 182012

RAV4 6-cyl

  • 38,000 miles
When backing the car out and turning the steering, there is a clunking noise that occurs. It mostly occurs from a cold start. There is a service bulletin out for this, but the dealer won't cover it. The car started making a popping sound. It was coming from underneath that car and made the exhaust sound really loud. Dealership said it was the centerpipe that was connected to the catalytic converter. The material of the centerpipe and catalytic was rusted and the dealership blamed it on me and that I drove the car off roading. I told them that the car has never gone off roading, garaged, and well maintained. Other 2006 Rav4 owners have cited the same issue stating that the material and craftsmanship of the centerpipe and catalytic converter were of poor quality. The seams of the centerpipe just completely came undone. When speaking with the dealership, they refused to cover it under the emissions warranty. When talking to the environment protection Agency for emissions, they said that Toyota should cover it. This centerpipe issue became a larger issue when the vehicle misfired and the vsc, check engine, and 4WD lights on. Took it to the dealership to discuss what the issue may be. Other owners stated that the ignition coils were of poor quality and Toyota has issued replacements. Talked to the dealership and they refused to replace it under warranty. Shortly after, the car seems to be driving very clunky and does not drive as well as usual. The car vibrates and drives very slowly. It sounded like it dropped a cylinder. The engine sounds very clunky. This has happened many times. Ignition coils were replaced several times. Check engine light, vsc, and 4WD lights turn on solid each of these instances. Since then the tire pressure has turned on and gone bad. Had to get that replaced. Now all 3 lights are back on and will need to find out why.

- Gaithersburg, MD, USA

problem #61

Jan 022014

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 90,000 miles
I had ABS, vsc all the traction light came on my car around 6 months ago. I took it into the dealer and got the car fixed the culprit was the bad ABS sensor. Now on new years night while driving home all the lights came on and I lost my traction ABS suddenly. After parking the car for few hrs or so seems to cure it, but it kicked in while driving again and lost ABS, traction etc. It is very unsafe and I am taking my car to the dealer for second time, first thing in the morning. Now do I have to do that for all 4 sensors" wait till they die out one by one and go all year around ? what happens if my ABS and traction stops working while I am on highway while its heavy snowing? I after quick research online there seems like the ABS sensor problem is quite common among all the Rav4 in similar body style. If Toyota knows about it why are they not doing something ? if I loose ABS and my traction while driving I am jeopardizing my life. I am certain that Toyota have said oh its bad ABS sensor and made the customer fix it but how about the rest of the sensors which is about to go bad" I would kindly seek if someone could get back to me. I would also volunteer my time and allow the car to be tested at your facility if needed to do so.

- Skokie, IL, USA

problem #60

Oct 222012

RAV4 4-cyl

  • miles


While driving from Maryland to Maine for a vacation, I noticed my transmission was slipping and grinding gears frequently in the range of 20-35 mph. I noticed it happening more frequently during slowdown for making a turn and then acceleration to resume driving. I did not have any accidents, but this has been happening more frequently. I had previously reported the problem, when it happened less frequently, to my dealership (darcars of frederick) and they told me that 1)they could not duplicate the sound during their test run and 2) if such a thing had happened, my ECU would have made a note of it and recorded it. Since there was no record of it happening, it was nothing. However, upon reading several complaints about the Rav4 02-03 models, regarding transmission problems, I find that their issues of hanging before slipping into gear, grinding gear and not finding the gear at all are the same ones I have been experiencing in my '06 Rav4. Could it be that my ECU is bad? yes, but my dealer won't acknowledge that possibility. They check my floor mats, but not the ECU for faulty issues. This is my primary vehicle and I Transport my daughter in it all of the time. I am worried one day I am going to be driving and get into a serious accident because of this issue. I have all of my maintenance records and recently had the transmission flushed and filled completely. I used oem fluid and am on schedule with all of my maintenance.

- Monrovia, MD, USA

problem #59

Aug 312013

RAV4 4-cyl

  • miles
For the second time this year (I also documented the same problem 2/24/13), we experienced unexpected acceleration and the car bucking. We were backing out of a driveway. My husband backed up and realized he needed to straighten out on the curved driveway so put it in drive for a few feet and then when he put it in reverse, the engine started revving up to a maximum RPM's. he is 200 pounds and had to hold his foot on the break to keep it from moving. He put it in neutral and turned the car off. My 20 year old son was in the car with us and got out and could smell the engine from revving up so high. My brother and sister in law came running out of the house because they could hear the engine revving up and knew something was very wrong. Last time this happened, we brought it to the dealership twice and they couldn't replicate the issue. I am not safe in my own car. Toyota has got to take responsibility for this and fix the issue! it is a huge problem. Had I been driving, no telling what would have happened as I would have been caught totally off guard and I'm not sure I would have had responded appropriately under pressure. This is unacceptable!!!!! I am afraid to drive my car!!!

- Destrehan, LA, USA

problem #58

Feb 262013

RAV4 6-cyl

  • 37,658 miles
Car at about 37,000 miles. Only drive to store and drop kids off to school. Car parked for 10 minutes while at store shopping. Came back, started the engine. The engine light, vsc and 4WD lights all lighted up. When to local Toyota dealer, dealer said can't service it at this time need to make appointment. Dealer stated based on the lights, this might be the ignition coil.. it's known to have problem. Estimated cost to fix about $1500. But we need to computerized the codes..

- Springfield, PA, USA

problem #57

Jan 252012


  • 70,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Toyota Rav4. The contact was driving 30 mph when the vehicle suddenly accelerated without warning. The contact lost control of the vehicle and drove onto a dirt road. The vehicle continued to accelerate with the brake pedal depressed as the vehicle turned around several times. The contact was able to turn the vehicle off and the vehicle was towed to local body shop. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and the current mileage was 70,000.

- Wabash, IN, USA

problem #56

May 242011

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 64,443 miles


I took my 2006 Rav4 into the leith Toyota dealership in raleigh, nc for the accelerator pedal recall. Service manager calls me and said that there is a banging vibration and noise coming from the steering column when the steering wheel is turned. (this did not exist before.) the manager said there is a technical service bulletin on the manufacturers defective design and that failure to correct the problem could result in an accident. This repair is nearly $400 and is not covered under any recall nor my now expired warranty. When I next drove the Rav4 the banging was so strong that the front seat passenger could feel it. I call Toyota customer care program, who confirmed the technical service bulletin but said that the problem is not a safety issue and that I should contact the dealership to inquire about them paying for the repair. The dealership said that the repair is not covered and that Toyota customer care would contact me as to what further would be done. After waiting more than 60 days for Toyota to call me, I called customer care again only to be told that nothing more would be done. I asked to speak to a supervisor, but none was available. I was told that a supervisor would call me back within 24 hours. 30 hours later Toyota customer care left a phone message for me to call them back. I have also had electrical problems that have caused this Rav4 to loose power and stop while traveling down the road and the battery goes dead about every two months.

- Raleigh, NC, USA

problem #55

Mar 182011


  • 49,000 miles
While driving on the highway at approximately 65 mph the car suddenly would not and behaved as if in neutral. The engine reved upon applying the gas. We pulled over to the shoulder and put on hazard lights and put the car in park. Then put the car back in drive and the car behaved normally.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #54

Feb 092011


  • 65,132 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Toyota Rav4. The contact was waiting to enter a highway with the brakes depressed when the entire instrument panel illuminated. The vehicle then abnormally accelerated and swerved into traffic as another vehicle crashed into the driver side of her vehicle. The contact sustained injuries to the hands and arms. The vehicle was towed to the dealer but not repaired. The failure and current mileage was 65,132.

- Red Oak , TX, USA

problem #53

Feb 162011

RAV4 4WD 4-cyl

  • 116,000 miles
2006 Rav4 : speed control: Sudden acceleration and sudden decrease in acceleration on highway. Starting in November 2010 our Toyota Rav4 would suddenly acceleration on highway, lunge forward while parking for no reason. In December 2010 all senor lights on the dashboard panel came on and the car actually decelerated while I while trying to change lanes on the highway. I quickly turned on my four ways and moved to the far left of highway for safety. All the dash board lights went off and car resumed normal driving functions. On February 16, 2011 I was on the highway again attempting to change lanes and the car decelerated and appeared to be stalling-out also all the dashboard lights when on:check engine, ABS, vsh, and 4WD. I again put my four ways on and moved to shoulder of highway, my vehicle resumed normal driving functions and all dashboard lights went off. About 5 minutes later the same thing happened again. I took my car to my mechanic the next day and he states it appears to be a malfuction in the senory panel. He contacted the Toyota dealer and is awaiting a response. My car in undrivable at the present time due to the fact it could stop running at any time for no apparent reason.

- Red Bank, NJ, USA

problem #52

Jun 012010

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 55,000 miles
2 unintended acceleration instances --- I have had two unintended acceleration instances in a 2006 Toyota Rav4. In both cases I was wearing boots and the boot hitting the brake overlapped and hit the accelerator at the same time. Neither case resulted in a collision. One of the problems here is that the brake pedal fully depressed position is well below the accelerator pedal position so overlap can apply the brake and accelerator at the same time.

- St. Louis, MO, USA

problem #51

Jan 272011


  • 40,000 miles
The driver owns a 2006 Toyota Rav4. After driving approximately 45 mph the driver came to a stop. Once the vehicle was stopped the engine began to rev very loudly and the driver had to apply heavy pressure to the brake pedal to keep the vehicle stopped. Numerous lights began illuminating on the dashboard. The contact was not the driver, so the specific light names were unavailable. Once the engine stopped revving the vehicle hesitated when the driver attempted to accelerate. The vehicle was not taken to have the failure diagnosed. The failure and current mileage was 40,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Newton, NJ, USA

problem #50

Jan 192011

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 70,000 miles
2006 Toyota Rav4 'full throttle stick', without recall - (second occurrence). Toyota will not repair/replace throttle unless they can replicate condition, due to the fact that this vehicle is not on recall list.

- San Antonio, TX, USA

problem #49

Mar 202010

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 50,785 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Toyota Rav4. The contact stated that the vehicle suddenly accelerated intermittently. The dealer stated that nothing was wrong with the vehicle and bolted down the floor mats. The engine continued to rev and the contact had to shift into park while in the idle position to get the rpms to decrease. The contact stated that the problem did not occur when the vehicle was being driven. The failure mileage was 50,785 and the current mileage was approximately 56,000. Updated 1/19/2010 updated 03/31/11

- Baltimore, MD, USA

problem #48

Sep 292010


  • 51,500 miles
When trying accelerate my Toyota 2006 rav 4, at any speed car will hesitate for second and suddenly accelerate to much faster speed that is intended. I have checked, ignition system, found nothing, my personal experience. In heavy rain fall have water inside the car at front passenger side coming from air blower area. Dealer says they don't know anything about both issues. These issues are not a onetime issue and happens all time.

- Hockessin, DE, USA

problem #47

Nov 262007


  • 16,482 miles
2006 Toyota Rav4. Unexpected acceleration. The consumer stated on three separate occasions, he experienced unwanted acceleration. The first incident occurred while he was traveling out of town and he discovered he had difficulty stopping the vehicle twice. First at a traffic light, and another time at a toll booth. On both occasions, the engine revved very loudly. The second incident happened one year later and the consumer had to quickly place the gear in neutral and press hard on the brakes in order to stop the vehicle. The vehicle was examined, and the consumer was informed the problem was with the mat and it was subsequently removed. The last episode was on feburary 13, 2010. Upon arriving at an establishment driving 20- 30 mph, he attempted to stop, but the vehicle did not respond to the brakes being applied. The consumer was finally able to stop after putting the gear in neutral.

- Rochester, NY, USA

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