really awful
Crashes / Fires:
23 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
7 / 0
Average Mileage:
16,481 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.

2009 Toyota RAV4 engine problems

engine problem

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2009 Toyota RAV4 Owner Comments (Page 3 of 5)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #42

Mar 052010


  • 1,000 miles


The contact owns a 2009 Toyota Rav4. The contact was pulling out of the driveway when the vehicle suddenly began to accelerate up to 20 mph. The contact depressed the brake pedal but the vehicle increased its speed before it finally stopped. The vehicle traveled about twenty feet before it was stopped. The vehicle had not been inspected at the time of the complaint. The current and failure mileages were approximately 1,000.

- Birmingham, AL, USA

problem #41

Apr 192010


  • 5,400 miles
2009 rav-4 Toyota was traveling up a gravel driveway. As it proceeded up an incline the car rapidly accelerated. The driver tried the brake to no avail. Fearing that she would be unable to stop, she veered off the driveway into the woods. The car hit several small trees and then turned over on its side. The airbag was deployed. Highway patrol report was made. Incident was reported to dealership. Dealership directed the call to California Toyota office.

- Reidsville, NC, USA

problem #40

Apr 252010

RAV4 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 9,264 miles
TL-the contact owns a 2009 Toyota Rav4. While parked, the contact attempted to shift into reverse but the vehicle suddenly revved up. The contact depressed the brake pedal firmly and shifted into neutral. The contact stated that rpms decreased and the vehicle behaved normally after five seconds. The contact planned to take the vehicle to an authorized dealership. The failure mileage was 9,264. The current mileage was 9,674. Updated 06/29/10 updated 09/21/10

- Loveland, OH, USA

problem #39

Apr 012010


  • 15,000 miles


I have a 2009 Toyota Rav4, and took it in to the dealer for accelerator shim placement as per the recent recall. Since the shim has been placed, I have been experiencing periodic episodes of "jackrabbit" starts from a stopped position. The accelerator is very touchy, it either creates a prolonged moment of hesitation, then jerks forward. There was one episode when the vehicle rapidly accelerated, thankfully there were no vehicles in front of me. I returned to the dealer, but since they could not replicate the concern, they dismissed my issue. I am annoyed that Toyota acted as though they have never heard of such a thing.

- Syracuse, NY, USA

problem #38

Apr 152010


  • 7,600 miles
Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6) this is in regards to complaint # 10325940 on a 2009 Toyota rav 4. the detail in the report is correct with the exception of the vehicle was not driven to the nearest dealer. The vehicle was taken to the nearest dealer on a flatbed tow truck. The VIN # for this vehicle is [xxx]. the dealer claimed to have done an approximate 10 mile road test and the diagnostics Toyota recommended that they do. Then after treating us not very nicely at all gave us the standard "it was caused by a floormat" excuses eventhough they claimed that they could not recreate the incident using a floor mat. They returned what is in my opinion an unsafe vehicle to us without having any concrete proof of what happened.

- Driftwood, PA, USA

problem #37

Apr 082010


  • 14,300 miles
Th- the contact owns a 2009 Toyota Rav4. The contact had the vehicle speed control accelerator pedal recall repair done on the vehicle one month ago. The repairs done for campaign number 10V017000 did not repair the vehicle. While traveling 35 mph the caller tried to come to a stop and the vehicle accelerated. The caller was able to bring the vehicle to a stop by placing the vehicle in neutral. The vehicle is currently at the dealer being inspected again. The contact did not have the VIN number at the time of the complaint.the failure mileage and current mileage was 14300.rl

- Macungie, PA, USA

problem #36

Apr 052010


  • 15,023 miles


I was driving my 2009 Toyota Rav4 on Monday April 5, 2010 and was stopped at a red light with my foot on the brake when I felt gas seemed to rev up. I felt like the car would have lurched forward had not my foot been on the brake. Also today after moving forward my car maintain a 20 miles an hour speed without my pressing on the gas pedal, April 13th, 2010.

- Spring Lake, MI, USA

problem #35

Apr 082010

RAV4 4WD 4-cyl

  • 18,000 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Toyota Rav4. While driving approximately 5 mph, the contact depressed the brake pedal and upon release, the vehicle suddenly accelerated causing a crash. None of the air bags deployed and the contact was injured. A police report was filed. The vehicle was towed but had not been inspected when the complaint was filed. The current and failure mileages were approximately 18,000. Updated 06/10/10 updated 08/06/10

- Brookline, MA, USA

problem #34

Apr 042010

RAV4 6-cyl

  • 8,100 miles
April 4, 2010 topic: Communication of engine acceleration from: Omitted vehicle: -Toyota Rav4 -purchased 9/26/09 - -year/model: 2009/4443A -engine: 3.5 liter DOHC V6 engine with dual vvt-I -purchased from: Germain Toyota of columbus problem: Today, April 4, 2010, my wife was backing the Rav4 into our car garage. Upon getting the car completely on the floor of the garage (a level surface), she was idling in reverse so that the SUV would finish backing up to insure the garage door would go down without hitting the front of the vehicle. Suddenly, the engine revved up a few hundred rpms. With her foot already on the brake pedal she immediately pushed down very hard on the brake pedal and pushed the console gear shift into neutral. Thus, my wife was able to prevent the SUV from immediately speeding up in reverse which prevented the vehicle from ramming into the garage wall which was approximately 4 to 5 foot from the back of the vehicle. The above action by my wife may have taken 2-3 seconds. However, after getting the Rav4 into neutral, the engine immediately revved up to a few thousand rpms. Within a very few seconds my wife turned the motor off. Fortunately, the vehicle was in neutral when this engine revving occurred. I was in the house in a room directly above the garage and heard both times of the engine revving. My wife also had a similar revving up of the engine that occurred approximately 5 days previous to March 4, 2010 while sitting at a red light. She held the brake pedal down. She only needed to hold the brake pedal down for 1 -2 seconds before she could take her foot off the brake to allow the car to go through the light that just changed to green. Upon letting up on the brake pedal to go forward the rpms immediately reduced. Also, the revving of the engine this time was comparable to the initial engine revving stated above for a few hundred rpms.

- Westerville, OH, USA

problem #33

Mar 202010


  • 8,850 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Toyota Rav4. While the contact was driving approximately 10 mph in a parking lot, the brake pedal was engaged and the vehicle suddenly accelerated. The engine rpms increased up to 100. The gears also shifted into neutral position. The engine was turned off and within a few minutes it restarted. The vehicle began to function normally. The following day, the vehicle was taken to the dealer who was unable to duplicate the failure after driving the vehicle. The technician was also unable to locate a failure code. A complaint was filed with the manufacturer who advised the contact to submit an arbitration form and possibly the manufacturer would buy back the vehicle. The failure mileage was 8,850. The current mileage was 8,758.

- Oceanside, NY, USA

problem #32

Mar 232010

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 5,000 miles


Drove up to use the atm at bank. Placed car in park and used atm. When I finished, I put my foot on the brake and shifted into drive. Car engine accelerated and car lurched forward. A large cloud of smoke came out of the exhaust pipe. I was able to put the car in neutral and turn off the engine. Putting the car in neutral did not stop the engine from racing. I pushed the car away from the atm and called the Toyota dealer, who came and drove the car to their garage. The dealer found no record of the event on the cars computer and has twice tried to return the vehicle to me. Only after I threatened to go on a local radio talk show, did the agree to continue to investigate. I was able to obtain video of the incident from the bank's security cameras and have shared them with the Toyota dealer and would be happy to share them with the NHTSA. Updated 07/26/10 updated IVOQ 08/04/10

- Moorhead, MN, USA

problem #31

Mar 112009


  • 13,285 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Toyota rav 4. the contact was driving approximately 5 mph turning a corner and the vehicle began a jerking motion. A sudden loss of power steering occurred without warning. The vehicle surged forward and continued acceleration. The vehicle slowed down after pressure was applied to the brake pedal. The failure occurred periodically. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for diagnostic testing. The technician was unable to duplicate the problem. The acceleration failure was updated in the database. The vehicle had prior recall repair performed and the remedy repair failed to correct the problem. The contact states there are two people in the family that drive the vehicle and two people have experienced acceleration failure of the vehicle. The failure mileage was 13,285. The current mileage was 14,000.

- Mission Viejo, CA, USA

problem #30

Mar 152010


  • 18,500 miles
My wife told me that her Toyota rav 4 seemed to surge forward when she was trying to stop. A few days later I was driving her car and was approaching a stop light that had just turned red. I started to slow down and apply the brake and the Toyota suddenly accelerated and lurched forward. Fortunately, there was no car in front of me or I would have rear-ended it. I immediately put it in neutral and put both feet on the brake and the engine accelerated to approximately 5000 RPM. I turned the ignition off and pulled over. After the engine shut off completely, I restarted the car and managed to get home safely. I called the dealer, leith Toyota, and they said to bring the car in right away. They kept the car several days and ran some tests, drove the car but because they were unable to replicate the same mechanical or electronic problem, they could not or would not do anything to fix the problem. So I feel that I am left with a vehicle that is not safe to drive. After learning that so many people have had the same problem, it is now obvious that Toyota and leith Toyota sold us this vehicle knowing the problem existed. The government needs to hold Toyota and the dealerships responsible and liable for any accidents that occur from this problem and reimburse consumers that purchased and own vehicles that are unsafe due to this mechanical/electronic problem.

- Raleigh, NC, USA

problem #29

Mar 062010


  • 16,000 miles
Sudden acceleration in 2009 Toyota rav 4 after recall repair. Happened for the 1st time since ownership of car 4 days after repair. Had car for approximately 1 year. Never had any problems. 4 days after repair, we were West bound on fm 1709 in southlake, tx approaching light just to the East of high school. We were approaching at approx 30 mph with speed decreasing due to red light and other cars already stopped at light. Car RPM's increased to the 3,000 range. Had to apply steady to hard pressure to brakes. Car was fighting to accelerate, but was able to continue speed descent. Got car to around 15 mph. Car lurched into 1st gear, RPM's decreased to around 1,000 range and we all were thrown forward in our seats when the car lurched.

- Flower Mound, TX, USA

problem #28

Feb 102010


  • 12,300 miles
I have a 2009 Toyota Rav4 that has unexpectedly accelerated 3 times. When I tried to brake the pedal was hard and the car accelerated. I threw it in neutral and took my foot off the brake. The car didn't rev like the pedal was stuck, instead it calmed down and came under control. Dealer says they can't find anything wrong.

- Ilwaco, WA, USA

problem #27

Mar 082010


  • 50 miles
Although my car was fixed in the Toyota recall, I believe the problem still exists. It is better, but not best. When I press on the accelerator sometimes the car jerks forward much faster than you would expect. It used to do this more often and to a greater degree, but still does do it on occasion. I noticed this when I first bought the car, but put it off to pressing down on the accelerator too hard. Then I began to think that if that was the case it would happen all the time. I purposely try to go forward gently, but am not able to sometimes.

- Carmel, IN, USA

problem #26

Mar 012010


  • 4,500 miles
To begin, my car has already had the Toyota recall "fix" and should have been fine. I was driving my Toyota Rav4 (2009) and approaching a four way stop. When I went to hit the brakes, there was a slight grinding noise. The car slowed a bit but did not stop and kept on moving through the stop sign. I ended up going through the intersection (luckily no one was coming) and coming to a stop almost 50 feet past. My husband drove the car home and we later took it to the dealer (no other incidents then). The dealer inspected the brakes and acceleration but could not find a cause. They kept the car for several days but ended up returning it to us and saying it is fine, as they could not find a specific cause to this incident. I am 8 months pregnant, and currently will not drive the car until I can be reassured this will not happen again.

- Fanwood, NJ, USA

problem #25

Mar 042010


  • 9,800 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Toyota Rav4. The driver states she was driving 25mph was driving in traffic and the vehicle accelerated on its own and crashed into the vehicle in front of her. The contact states they took the vehicle to the dealer and they said that there was nothing wrong with the vehicle. The failure mileage was 9,800. The current mileage is 9,820.

- Brunsville, TX, USA

problem #24

Feb 062010


  • 2,700 miles
While coming to an intersection, I was braking. During the braking, the vehicle suddenly bolted (accelerated) ahead for a period of 5 seconds. (vehicle accelerated during braking process ) I continued to keep foot on brake, pressing with a lot more force. During the "incident", I was able to turn wheel sharply to the right, to avoid hitting a vehicle directly in front of me. Needless to say, I was very shaken, as was my 100% disabled husband, also in the front seat. We took vehicle to Toyota dealer, on ebruary 10, 2010, (2, 766 total mileage) and 30 minutes of their time was given to my Toyota. They checked it over, trying to find the problem. They said "they could not find a problem"., and sent me on my way. They gave me an "800" number to call, and our 2 phone calls to them, was a waste of time. They said they would send me arbitration papers, which I have not received. I don't see why I have to go to arbitration for them to fix my vehicle, when it is still under warranty. * they reset ECM/PCM test drove op code 895994 3/99. Checked ECU for dtc scan tool check dtc and operation. Hours 0.50 dealer refuses to do more testing because Toyota will not authorize it. I feel that my vehicle is "a death trap" and I will not drive it. In the meantime, I am still making monthly payments on it, and consider it a "dead horse payment".

- Oxford, ME, USA

problem #23

Feb 272010


  • 10,000 miles
Our Rav4 was apparently not included in the last recalls but I now believe this is incorrect. On 2/27 I rear-ended a truck going about 30-35 mph. I originally thought I had missed the brake pedal and by the time I realized the car was not stopping I had to slam my brakes and tried to turn to miss the car in front of me. After checking further I'm not sure how I would have even been able to entirely miss the pedal. I was very shaken up and thought I had imagined that the car was accelerating after I had originally braked until I overheard my 8 yr old daughter talking to someone else and saying she 'felt like we were going faster instead of stopping". if not for the urging of friends and family and after researching, I'm not sure I would have even thought it was a Toyota problem. Luckily I was the only person to be injured with a sprained foot, but if this can help to save someone else from a potentially fatal crash I would feel that I have done my part. Please push Toyota to find out the real problem and get it fixed. I'm not sure how I am even going to be able to drive that truck again without feeling confident that my family and I are safe.

- Mattituck, NY, USA

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