fairly significant
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
78,000 miles
Total Complaints:
21 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (12 reports)
  2. replace skid control computer (4 reports)
  3. vehicle skid control ecu/steering angle sensor (2 reports)
  4. re-calibrate vsc system (1 reports)
  5. replace brake booster (1 reports)
  6. replaced oxygen sensor (1 reports)
2003 Toyota Sequoia electrical problems

electrical problem

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2003 Toyota Sequoia Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #21

Aug 142017

Sequoia SR5 V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,000 miles


I bought this Sequoia new from the dealer and still own it. It has never been right since I've owned it. The dealer sold it to me with after market rims and tires. When I took it back to the dealer with the VSC issues they said nothing can be done because it has after market rims and tires, a catch 22. So I've been dealing with it since day one. When I come off the freeway and turn right on the long on ramp, the buzzer goes off, VSC light, Trac Off and ABS lights all come on, and the brakes shutter and the entire Sequoia shakes until I finish the turn. If I'm on a windy mountain road the same thing happens. I have found many youtube videos with the same problem and worse. This is should be recalled on all Sequoia's. I have recently purchased stock size rims and tires, however the problem is not resolved. Toyota knows about the problem, however does not accept responsibility. Based on my research on the Web, it could be steering wheel position sensor,a skid ECU, a zero point calibration, a yaw rate sensor among many other opinions. I recently found a 2010 article which states the following "Toyota was aware that there were issues with the SUV's vehicle stability-control system midway through its 2003 model year, but considered it to be a "drivability issue, not a safety issue," says John Hanson, spokesman for the company. But NHTSA received more complaints — a total of 163 have been filed with NHTSA and Toyota — and began investigating in 2008. "In order to resolve the agency's concerns and make sure everything did get taken care of, we decided to issue a recall," Hanson says. "We still do not consider it a safety recall. ... We are doing that because NHTSA is concerned about it, so we're concerned about it."The recall affects only Sequoias built early in the 2003 model year, before Toyota updated the truck's software.

- Daniel C., Redondo Beach, CA, US

problem #20

Mar 102016

Sequoia Limited 4.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 78,500 miles

It is annoying that it comes and goes while driving.

- changbyi, Fremont, CA, US

problem #19

Jun 182004


  • Automatic transmission
  • 32,000 miles

This problem is there since a very long time (before 36000 miles) and I believe it is certainly a subject to recall but Toyota does not care.

Bought new and received many recall notices for this SUV suggesting that some of the symptoms involve VSC/TRAC LIGHTS to be ON and lately, took it to the Toyota dealership but, way after the 36000 miles warranty was over. Dealer concluded that these lights are ON due to some other reason and not related to all other recall notices (and will not tell me the root cause until I pay them for additional diagnostic.) Dealer also refused to perform all other recall services until I pay and get this problem fixed first. The estimate was up to $2,000 (if computer replacement is required !!!) So, I came back.

Took it to the another Toyota dealer for the next round of oil change service and they at least performed all other recall services without asking any question but left these lights ON.

I do not know what is the solution and where else I can file a complaint to help initiate a recall from Toyota but I am certainly not willing to spend up to $2,000 on this problem which occurred without my fault and I can read that there are many more owners having the same problem.

Would appreciate some low cost solution and recommendations in this regard.

- rs.ga, Alpharetta, GA, US

problem #18

May 212015

Sequoia SR5 V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 180,000 miles


click to see larger images

VSC/trac lights are on

This VSC TRAC LIGHT is just annoying.. Each time it comes on I go to the auto shop for a read out. Each time I'm told it's my OLD GAS CAP. So, I went A Toyota Dealership, purchased a NEW GAS CAP for $49.00. Headed to my truck and placed NEW CAP ON.. And off I went with a NEW GAS CAP.. That SH.. didn't work. 😡

THIS TRUCK HAS NO OTHER PROBLEMS.. I'm hoping this isn't a problem with next SMOG TEST.


- scalhoun, Santa Ana, CA, US

problem #17

Apr 302015

Sequoia SR5 2WD V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 89,000 miles

First, I spent $810 in 2010 for same problem, mileage 46000, replaced the ecu. Now spent $1070 for same problem. It was already a problem before 36000 miles. I ignore it. Toyota is bad when it come to this problem. Many complaints about Seqouia of any year.

- Ricardo D., California, US

problem #16

May 152013

Sequoia SR5 4.7L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

After reading all the other complaints, on this and other websites, the problem doesn't appear to be simply Toyata being mad at me. Except for this problem, the Toyota Sequoia has been one of the most reliable vehicles I've ever owned (and that includes a number of Cadillacs, three Benz-types, and some other cool stuff).

It just seems counter-productive for the Toyota folks to ignore a problem that could develop into a real hazard.

- neilw1, Wynona, OK, US

problem #15

Feb 012011


  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles


ABS?VSC Tract light keep staying on after repairing and now the rear winshield motor is acting up. they stop in randomly locations not at set position when turn off the switch. I do not want to buy this car in the future.

- oanhchinh, Sugar Land, TX, US

problem #14

Oct 242009

Sequoia SR5

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,000 miles

I complained to Toyota and they opened a case for me. They told me to take the Sequoia to the dealership to be checked out and they would be in touch. The car stayed there 1 week. We got our called today that Toyota would not pay anything toward a fix because the car was too old and not under warranty. This issue has nothing to do with misuse, or age it has to do with a manufacturer defect that is affecting many other 2003 Sequoias. I told them they needed to recall this. I am hearing a horrible grinding noise when the car is in reverse now and according to a very reputable mechanic there is nothing wrong with the car! He told me that it was a computer issue that controlled the ABS/ VSC TRAC. Bottom line Toyota isn't taking this seriously and I pray nothing happens to me or my children while driving this car. Good luck people !

- Tina L., Marietta, GA, US

problem #13

Jun 012009

Sequoia 4.7L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 102,000 miles

I bought the Sequoia new in 2002. During the life of the vehicle, I have had the dealership check out the problem at least 6 times. While under warranty, it wasn't a concern. Nor did the light stay on for long. Now that I am out of warranty, they want over $1,000 to replace the VSC TRAC computer and also warn me that this may not be all that requires repair. Since VSC TRAC is not essential, I have simply ignored the problem.

- Steve B., Raleigh, NC, US

problem #12

May 052004

Sequoia Limited

  • Automatic transmission
  • 10,000 miles

My VSC/Trac lights have come on randomly beginning at 10,000 miles. Even though I bought extended warranty, the problem was NEVER taken care of by Toyota. They always wanted thousands to fix brake booster (which when I got a second opinion it was fine) or some other $1500+ fix, of course not covered by my bumper to bumper. I have brought the problem up to Toyota customer service twice. They don't care! I know sooooo many people online have the same problem with this year/model. Hopefully we will be the next recall!

- Michele M., Poway, CA, US

problem #11

Aug 142009

Sequoia SR5 4.7L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 94,000 miles


Same as all the others with Sequoia VSC lights and engine light came on at the same time around 94,000 miles. The dealer said it would cost $2,900 to replace both computers. I don't know if I believe them or not. I would rather disable the Vehicle Skid Control system and just use common sense with skidding, My other 2 vehicles don't have skid control. Nothing I ever had did until this Sequoia. It should be a mandatory recall. I won't pay that to fix it.

- Patricia S., Washington, MS, US

problem #10

Nov 052007

Sequoia SR5 V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles

How ironic that the VSC Track and engine lights came on at the same time at exactly 111,000 miles. This is the 2nd time in 1.5 years the VSC Track light has came on. This part had better be under some sort of part warranty. This has been a very reliable vehicle except when it seems the computer parts are programmed to fail.

I use to commute in heavy slow traffic in Seattle when my brake light would come on when using the brakes in traffic. The dealer could not find a problem, since leaving Seattle this problem has not repeated itself unless in slow heavy traffic. The brake light will go off after the key is turned off and back on again.

- robertprather, Oroville, CA, US

problem #9

May 042009

Sequoia Limited V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 124,500 miles

I have read other complaints about this and now I am a victim as well. I have loved my toyota and I hope this doesn't change me forever. THis is a real pain the in pocket book.

Update from Jun 3, 2009: I took my vehicle to a mechanic I trust. He said he had to "re-calibrate" the skid control system several times, but he finally got the VSC lights to stay off. This cost me $200 instead of $2500 to replace the computer. He made no guarantees about how long this fix would last, but if you are strapped for cash like I am, try to find a mechanic to do this for you instead of replacing the computer.

- daz, Phoenix, AZ, US

problem #8

Apr 162009

Sequoia SR5 V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 68,500 miles

As others here have complained, I, too, have the VSC trac light and Trac off lights on. I start the car and pull out and a beeping alarm sounds, power is lost and there is a horrible grinding noise. Once the car comes to a stop, the lights come on and then the car drives normally. I am now aware of this problem and accelerate very gently until the lights come on so as to avoid the beeping and grinding. I took this to the dealer and they said I needed to replace the skid control computer which would be $1250 for the part and $200 for the labor.

Why should a computer failure have anything to do with the wear and tear of the car? This should last for the LIFE of the vehicle, not just 68,000 miles (or less) as others have attested. Of course, even my extended warranty expired at 60,000 miles. I will not fix this unless I get a serious discount or it causes another problem. I just don't have the money for it right now. I have had two other Toyotas and neither had any serious problems. I will NOT buy another Sequoia EVER!

- Sandra W., Clovis, CA, US

problem #7

Jan 282009

Sequoia Limited V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 103,500 miles

there are multiple problems such as mine with this model year.Toyota should recall it . i took car to shop and they say i may need to replace the transmission however nothing is wrong with my tran. the vsc light stays on and also the vsc trac light. i have seen other complaints and none list a tran replacement.my abs light comes on now and also my check engine as a result of the above lights. more owners need to report these issues that they are having with this model year to hold Toyota accountable.

- onebriggs, Woodbridge, VA, US

problem #6

Oct 132006

(reported on)

Sequoia Limited

  • 44,000 miles

My Sequoia is only 3 years old and Toyota says I now need to replace the Vehicle Skid Control Computer and the Trans Late ECU (whatever that is) for a total of $2100! Of course, my warranty was up 8,000 miles ago. I haven't fixed it yet because I'm hoping to get a second opinion that costs a lot less. I've seen many others with this problem on different blog sites but Toyota doesn't want to give me the time of day when I try to complain about this needing to be paid for by Toyota. This problem all started when my husband & I almost got in an accident when the "VSC TRAC" and "TRAC OFF" lights came on and a short beep sounded. The brakes fluttered and there was a grinding noise. We took it to Thousand Oaks Toyota in California and they gave us the $2100 quote. I don't think Toyota will ever get my business again. This is the second major problem I've had with this 3 year old car.

- Tracy S., Ventura, CA, US

problem #5

Aug 152007

Sequoia SR5 5.2L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 61,000 miles

The internet is full of Sequoia owners complaining about this VSC/Trac problem.

Toyota are obviously aware of problem - the Customer Experience group offered to go 50/50 with me on the repair, since I am out of warranty. I would not expect such a major piece of electronic equipment to fail after only 60,000 miles. I would be very wary of buying another Sequoia based on the feedback I see from other owners and my own experience. (see my other related complaint - total $3k in repairs in 3 months!!!!) I never post to forums but felt compelled to do so to try to protect other potential owners from making costly mistake

- Matthew W., Sugar Land, TX, US

problem #4

Dec 062007

Sequoia SR5 5.2L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles

OK so I got my VSC/Trac computer replaced 3 months ago and now the lights are on again - this time accompanied by brake light. Dealers says we now need to replace the Brake Booster - $1300 - we are now close to $3000 in 3 months. The Customer Experience dept offered no help this time since they have already offered help! Again, I am amazed that so many people have this problem and it is not being taken care of by Toyota, especially as this is a safety issue - this assists the brakes.

Again - be very cautious about purchasing a Sequoia until you have researched the reliability of these vehicles.

- Matthew W., Sugar Land, TX, US

problem #3

Sep 282007

(reported on)

Sequoia SR5 4.7L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,654 miles

This "fix" apparently lasted 13 months until it happened again this week as reported.

- jwb, Jacksonville, FL, US

problem #2

Sep 262007

(reported on)

Sequoia SR5 4.7L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles

VSC/trac lights are on. Here we go again with this recurring problem which I will again have to have "fixed" at my expense, again, by the dealer. Why isn't there a recall on this item which I have read many Tundra and Sequoia owners have had?

- jwb, Jacksonville, FL, US

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