really awful
Crashes / Fires:
13 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
23,492 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.

2011 Toyota RAV4 engine problems

engine problem

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2011 Toyota RAV4 Owner Comments (Page 2 of 3)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #29

Feb 102014


  • 30,000 miles


The contact owns a 2011 Toyota Rav4. The contact stated that while traveling various speeds, the vehicle erroneously accelerated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where the failure could not be replicated. The manufacturer was not contacted about the failure. The failure mileage was approximately 30,000.

- Northport, NY, USA

problem #28

Dec 282013

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 13,100 miles
I lease a 2011 Toyota rav 4 and my car accelerated uncontrollably into another car. I was inching out of a parking spot very slowly in reverse, when I noticed a man to my right, two spots away from me, pulling out head first. I depressed my brake pedal in order to let him go and the moment I did that, I literally flew back into this man's car with such a force that I would have most definitely run somebody over if they were walking behind my car. Thank god there was not a huge amount of space (maybe 6 feet) between me and the car I hit because I surged back with such a force that given the time and/or space, I cannot even think about what could have happened to me or someone else if the car was able to gain more momentum. Not to mention how thankful I am my 3 year old daughter and 6 month old son were not in the car with me! I most definitely had an accelerator problem. I had no additional mats on my floor. There was no pedal misplacement. I am telling you that I was slamming on the break and it didn't work- I just propelled behind me into this man's car. I am in the process of contacting everyone and everyone to try to get out of my lease. I am not driving this car ever again and wouldn't risk my life or the life of my two children. I am very skeptical of accurate findings in an investigation after reading many reports from people swearing the car accelerated and the brakes did not work and being told everything looks fine with their car by the investigator. There must be a recall for this car. I could have killed somebody. I will never drive another Toyota!

- Williston Park, NY, USA

problem #27

Dec 272013

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 55,000 miles
While backing into a parking spot after applying the brake the vehicle jerked back several times no mater how hard I applied the brake I could not stop it. I was going about 5 miles or less per hr. The same thing happened later the same day in my driveway. Twice in one day also on another day my wife was heading down the driveway and applied the brakes and the vehicle would not stop no matter how hard she applied the brakes it finally stopped about 40 feet later in the middle of the road. She was very scared, thankfully no car was coming when this happened. We took it to Toyota and of course they found nothing they told us we hit the wrong peddle (three different times) which we did not. And so did the thousands of other people that have complained and then hurried us on our way. How many times does this have to happen to people before Toyota is forced to do something? from what I have read it seems to have started when car company's went from accelerator cables to computer sensors and electric motors. So all I can do is file a complaint and hope the everybody else that has encounters this problem will do the same so maybe if enough people do something will be done. We were going to trade it in but doing research we can't seem to find a newer vehicle that hasn't had this complaint. So I guess we are stuck with it and all my wife and I can do is say a little prayer each time I get behind the wheel.

- Alfred, ME, USA

problem #26

Oct 202013

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 10,647 miles


When approaching a red light at an intersection and almost stopped, the engine started to race, sounding like a jet engine taking off. In spite of putting my full force on the brake, the car kept jerking forward into the intersection. Finally, at my wife's screamed instruction, I slammed the car into park. This finally stopped the engine. We were frightened to death. I do not believe my wife could have stopped the car without an accident. We were lucky that there was no car in front of us or someone would have been seriously hurt. I had the car towed to the dealer and explained to them what had happened and that we were afraid to drive the car. At their question, I told them that the floor mats were Toyota's and came with the car. Three hours later, they called to tell me that the computer and a test drive found nothing wrong; pick up the car. I then called the Toyota complaint office to make an official complaint. However, their process is to merely send the dealer's data to the regional office, who, of course, found nothing wrong. In the meantime, I continued to get several calls from various dealer personnel to pick up the car. No sympathy was ever expressed. Since neither my wife nor I could ever feel safe in the car, I sold it back to the dealer for a big loss. We don't want to feel responsible for endangering other people's lives. This problem with Toyota cars is not resolved. It must be further investigated. In fact, this car had another incident previously where the motor roared at an intersection, however without lasting long enough to start moving the car.

- Tinton Falls, NJ, USA

problem #25

Jan 012013


  • miles
2011 Toyota rav 4. consumer writes in regards to vehicle sudden acceleration and disabled throttle. The consumer stated he began having problems with the vehicle in Jan 2013, which resulted in two accidents. One of the accidents resulted in $2200 worth of damage, when the vehicle accelerated and lurched forward. The vehicle would disable the throttle over 5 mph when the brake was applied. However, the sudden acceleration also occurred under 5 mph.

- Hollidaysburg, PA, USA

problem #24

Jun 152013


  • 2,200 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Toyota Rav4. The contact stated while driving approximately 3 mph the brake pedal was depressed and there was a rapid increase in acceleration. The vehicle failed to slow down. The contact applied force to the brake pedal while shifting from drive into the park position. The vehicle came to a stop and resumed in operation. The failure recurred two times. The manufacturer was made aware of the problem. The approximate failure mileage was 2,200.

- Edison, NJ, USA

problem #23

Oct 102012


  • 11,000 miles


The contact owns a 2011 Toyota Rav4. The contact stated that he shifted into drive and the vehicle immediately accelerated to 25 mph independently. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for inspection and they stated that the vehicle was performing as designed. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified and stated that they would send a technician to further assess the failure. The failure mileage was 11,000.

- Pittson, PA, USA

problem #22

Apr 042013

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 14,800 miles
While driving North in stop and go traffic on dan ryan expressway I was accelerating from about 20 mph to about 35 mph, when the car started to vibrate very bad, as if all four wheels had hit the rumble strip on the edge of the road. The car has been riding a lot rougher since about Jan 30th.

- Chicago , IL, USA

problem #21

May 152012

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 15,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Toyota Rav4. The contact stated that while stopped with the brake pedal depressed, the vehicle lurched forward. The contact applied excessive pressure to the brake pedal and placed the vehicle in neutral in order to come to a stop. The failure recurred a second time. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 15,000.

- Albrightsville, PA, USA

problem #20

Dec 232012

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 25,000 miles
There were three individuals in vehicle, driver and three passengers - all adults. Driving in residential section of western cincinnati area (delhi area) with a speed limit of 35 mph. Approaching a traffic light on a slight downhill grade. Traffic light was red so began applying the brake. As I continued to approach intersection the vehicle shuddered and I noticed engine RPM's were well in excess of normal (noted by sound and had not verified by tachometer). I had to fight the vehicle to come to complete stop as I heard the tires screech and felt the vehicle lurching as I pushed hard on brake pedal. After coming to a complete stop, put vehicle in neutral and RPM's went out of control. Shut off vehicle and waited a few seconds. Restarted vehicle and RPM's again went out of control. Shut off vehicle a second time, nudged the back side of accelerator pedal to see if stuck in position. I could not notice that it was stuck down. Restarted vehicle when traffic light turned green and RPM's and subsequent operation normal for remainder of day (included at least four restarts of vehicle and ~100 miles of driving). Have not driven vehicle again since the day of incident.

- Milford, OH, USA

problem #19

Nov 132012

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 10,500 miles


I was approaching a traffic light in low speed and lightening my pressure on the gas pedal when the car accelerated and lurched forward. I pressed my foot on the brake pedal and the car continued accelerating. I had to veer to the adjacent lane since I was getting too close to the car in front of me. Then, the car came to a halt.

- Beacon, NY, USA

problem #18

May 152012


  • 5,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Toyota Rav4. The contact stated that while driving approximately 10 mph the contact applied the brake pedal and noticed the vehicle suddenly lunged forward independently. The contact was able to stop the vehicle by continually pumping the brake pedal. The failure occurred two different times. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for diagnostic testing. The technician was unable to diagnose the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 5,000.

- Rockville, MD, USA

problem #17

Oct 182012

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 6,000 miles
I was driving my 2011 Toyota Rav4 on October 18,2012, and upon pulling into my driveway, I put my foot on the brake pedal and the car began "roaring" and accelerated rapidly toward my house. I practically stood on the brake pedal and eventually the car stopped just short of crashing. It traveled a distance of 60 feet before stopping. We purchased the car new and it has 6000 miles on it. My husband immediately checked the Toyota floor mat and it was in place secured by the "fix" Toyota has installed(two clips). No other mat is in our car. We had the car towed to lakewood Toyota.

- Bradenton, FL, USA

problem #16

Oct 032012

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 8,100 miles
I was at a stop sign in a parking lot attempting to turn left to position my car behind a pick-up truck (towing a trailer) waiting to turn right. My car shot ahead and crashed into the trailer. Applying the brake did nothing. I finally was able to put the car in reverse and it shot backwards at the same high speed. I don't know what the tach read--it wasn't a priority at the time. Had the truck and trailer not been ahead of me, I would have shot across a heavily traveled highway. This is the second time this has happened. Last March I was pulling into my garage when the car accelerated forward into my freezer and the back wall of the garage. I like the car but, frankly, I'm afraid to drive it now.

- Fairport, NY, USA

problem #15

Aug 222012


  • 10,500 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Toyota Rav4. The contact stated that while decelerating for a traffic stop, the engine rpms begin to race, causing the vehicle to accelerate independently. The contact shifted the vehicle into neutral and began to smell smoke. The vehicle was turned off and towed to a dealer. The dealer stated that they could not replicate the failure nor find a problem. The manufacturer was notified and advised the contact that there was no history of sudden acceleration with the model vehicle and offered no assistance. The vehicle had not been repaired. The failure and current mileages were 10,500.

- Boscawen, NH, USA

problem #14

Apr 062012

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 31,212 miles
This is an incident involving sudden vehicle acceleration. I was stopped with my foot on the brake in the where great mall parkway turns onto eastbound montague expwy in milpitas, ca. Despite having my foot on the brake, the vehicle began to creep forward. I responded by pressing the brake pedal harder. This caused the vehicle stability control system to engage and the brake pedal pushed through the resistance point as is typical when the vehicle stability control engages. The vehicle began to accelerate so I quickly moved the transmission selector from drive into park in order to stop the vehicle. I reported the failure to Toyota motor sales usa and the complaint was assigned case number [xxx]. I followed the recommended procedure of having the vehicle inspected by the local Toyota dealer, piercey Toyota, on April 13, 2012. The service manager completed an inspection and submitted a report to Toyota technical services. Today, May 2, 2012, I followed up with both the piercey Toyota service manager and with Toyota motor sales. Anthony of Toyota told me, essentially, that Toyota refuses to acknowledge the failure and refuses to give me a formal written response. Anthony continued by saying that if this response was not satisfactory to me, then I should get an outside counsel. I submit that the sudden unintentional acceleration problem still exists with Toyota--at least with my vehicle--and that it needs to be fixed. It is my opinion that Toyota is 'giving the finger' to the problem and to the United States and that Toyota's failure to properly address the problem will likely kill innocent people if Toyota does not find a real solution. I am prepared to submit more documents and details regarding this incident and the problem. I would like to be put directly in touch with an officer at your office so that I can enter a full and formal complaint. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6)

- San Jose, CA, USA

problem #13

Apr 092012


  • 6,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Toyota Rav4. The contact stated that there was an increase in the engine rpms while the vehicle was stopped. The contact shifted into neutral and applied heavy pressure to the brake pedal to keep the vehicle stopped. The engine rpms remained high for a few minutes before ceasing. The vehicle was taken to the dealer, who inspected the failure and could not diagnose a problem. The manufacturer was notified and sent a specialist to examine the vehicle. The specialist could not diagnose a failure. The failure mileage was 6,000.

- Pipersville, PA, USA

problem #12

Oct 132011

RAV4 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 5,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Toyota rav 4. the contact stated that when stopping, his foot would haphazardly depress the accelerator pedal. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where the contact was informed that the nothing could be done to repair the flaw in the vehicle design. The current and the failure mileages were 5,000. Updated 05/11/12 the consumer stated while driving 65 mph, he had to immediately apply the emergency brake to prevent a collision, as the brake pedal went all the way to the floor. Updated 05/15/12

- Jacksonville, FL, USA

problem #11

Jan 252012


  • 500 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Toyota Rav4. The contact stated that the accelerator pedal and brake pedal were positioned too close to one another. The contact stated that while driving 2 mph in a garage, he attempted to brake, but depressed the accelerator pedal instead. The vehicle then accelerated forward and crashed into the garage door. A police a report was not filed and no injuries were reported. The vehicle was taken to the dealer, who did not offer any assistance since they could not alter the design of the vehicle. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileages were 500.

- North Tonawanda, NY, USA

problem #10

Jan 122011


  • 150 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Toyota rav-4. the contact stated that while driving approximately 50 mph and depressing the brakes to make a right turn, the vehicle continued to accelerate. After abruptly applying the brakes and shifting into neutral, the vehicle began to decelerate with the engine exhibiting an extremely loud noise. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where they advised him that they were unable to diagnose the failure and to have an investigator further inspect the vehicle. The vehicle was taken for a test drive by the investigator who ended up involved in a crash and destroyed the vehicle, preventing a thorough investigation of the failure. The manufacturer was contacted and they replaced the contact's vehicle with a new one. The failure mileage was approximately 150. The VIN was unavailable.

- Cragsmoor, NY, USA

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