really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
3 / 0
Average Mileage:
98,025 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.

2008 Toyota Sienna body / paint problems

body / paint problem

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2008 Toyota Sienna Owner Comments (Page 2 of 3)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #27

Mar 012015


  • 130,000 miles


The cable for the passenger side power sliding door broke when the door was closing.

- Ann Arbor, MI, USA

problem #26

Oct 012014

Sienna 6-cyl

  • 108,500 miles
Passenger side power slide door does not work by pressing the button on the central console, on the side of door or the key fob. The slide doors do work by pulling the handles from the outsides. I was told this was the override procedure. This is a big concern with this being a family vehicle.

- Zebulon, NC, USA

problem #25

Jan 152015

Sienna 6-cyl

  • 72,465 miles
I was getting things out of back with power lift gate up. While leaning in vehicle the power lift gate came down without warning and caught me. It did not continue to crush me but it did not reverse so I had to use a pretty good force to push it up (my wife probably would not have been able to do it). It did it a second time a week or so later. When I took it to Toyota they said the struts were bad and replaced them. When I asked why there was no warning they just shrugged their shoulders and said do not know and insinuated they would not know what to do so it would not happen again without warning. How was I to know the struts were bad since it is a power lift gate had been working just fine? it seems to me if this is not something Toyota can fix so it cannot come down without warning they at least need to install warning labels in an obvious place that the lift gate can close without warning. I really think my wife would not been able to push it up as I did. She would have needed assistance.

- Irving, TX, USA

problem #24

Jan 132015


  • 84,900 miles


Power sliding door cable got rusted and snapped. Jammed the door. Toyota covers the door latch but not the cable.

- Silv Rspring, MD, USA

problem #23

Jun 092011

Sienna 6-cyl

  • 24,578 miles
The driver side passenger sliding door would not lock open. I was on a slight decline. My daughter was getting out of the car and the sliding door was pushed open but did not lock and slid back and slammed into my daughters hand. When trying to re-open the sliding door, it would not lock open, it would continue to slide forward. Since that day, the problem has persisted sporadically. The vehicle can be on a flat surface, incline, decline etc, it does not seem to matter. Each time when the door is slid open it, the locking mechanism is not working. The door will not stay open. The vehicle was brought to the dealership in July 2011 and I was told they could not duplicate the problem, so it was not fixed. The problem continued. In 2013 I received a voluntary recall notice on the non-power sliding doors were not locking shut and could open during operation (which was also happening with my vehicle) so I brought the vehicle to another dealership in October 2013 and asked for them to fix the door since I was having both the recall problem and the other problem. That dealership stated they could not duplicate the problem and they "greased" the mechanism. That did not resolve the issue and it was increasingly happening. In September 2014 I brought the vehicle back to the original dealership and asked for the vehicle to be repaired or the mechanism replaced. I stated I was concerned for the safety of my 3 year old son who goes in and out of the door and I did not want the door to slam into his hand or head and cause serious injury. I had taken video during one of the times that the door was malfunctioning. I showed it to the service rep hoping it would help with the problem. Again, they stated they could not duplicate the problem and it went unrepaired. The problem has continued and it will only be a matter of time that it will cause serious injury.

- Pembroke, NH, USA

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problem #22

Aug 152014

Sienna 6-cyl

  • 69,556 miles
The passenger side automatic door cable snapped. The car is only 6 years old. I did some research on the internet and there are widespread reports of this being a common design flaw with Toyota Sienna automatic doors. I called the dealership and they indicated it was $1600 to repair the cable. That is outrageous! I wrote to Toyota through their customer support site inquiring about an extended warranty I read about regarding this issue, however they opted to ignore me and not respond.

- Racine, WI, USA

problem #21

Jan 012012


  • 95,000 miles


The contact owns a 2008 Toyota Sienna. The contact stated that the passenger's front and rear side doors failed to unlock internally. The passenger side front and rear side doors were only able to be unlocked from the outside. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was advised that the doors electric cable failed. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 95,000 and the current 126,600. The VIN was not available.

- Wellsboro , PA, USA

problem #20

Mar 282014

Sienna 6-cyl

  • 42,000 miles
My wife was parking our 2008 Toyota Sienna with our 3 young boys in the automobile. She slowly brought the vehicle to a complete stop; never using gas, just covering and tapping lightly on the brake. Once the automobile came to a stop my wife pressed the brake a little more in order to put the vehicle in park. At that moment the vehicle accelerated incredible fast, jumped over an 8 inch concrete parking lot divider and crashed into a tree about 10 - 15 feet from the concrete divider. We are certain that this was a "sudden unintended acceleration" incident caused by some mechanical, electrical, programming or other defect in the '08 Sienna. This was not "driver error"! my wife did not confuse the gas pedal and the brake. This was not caused by a floor mat obstructing the gas pedal. This was caused by some type of a design or component defect. How can w be so certain? my wife and I have parked in this parking spot (located in our apartment complex) hundreds of times. To park in this parking spot you first have to make a left hand turn at a stop sign. This stop sign is about 30 - 40 feet from the parking spot, which requires that you make a sharp right turn. Once you press the accelerator slightly to make the left at the stop sign, you do not use the gas again. You simply tap and cover your brake until you make the right into the parking spot. Our vehicle came to a stop. In fact, upon "stopping" one of our 3 boys removed his seat belt immediately before the vehicle accelerated out of control. I'm asking for assistance from someone within Toyota or the NHTSA with knowledge of this flaw. My wife and kids were "fortunate". but this is a "fatal flaw" and something must be done.

- Heathrow, FL, USA

problem #19

Mar 052014

Sienna 6-cyl

  • 69,000 miles
My 2008 Toyota Sienna has power rear sliding doors. While the driver side rear door was opening, the cable for the door mechanism snapped and would not close completely. After investigating the situation, the broken cable was jammed in the door mechanism, preventing the door from closing. As a result, the door now does not fully open, and will not hold in the open position. If parked on a hill, the door will close if not held open. Looking at the cable, the plastic sheathing around the cable had many cracks causing the cable itself to rust and fail. The passenger side door cable has similar cracks but has not failed yet. I brought the vehicle to our local Toyota dealer. They mentioned this cable failure was a known problem and previous model years were covered under an extended warranty program. However, the 2008 model year was not covered.

- Groveland, MA, USA

problem #18

Jan 012014


  • 80,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Toyota Sienna. The contact was attempting to open the rear driver's side door the but the door only opened six inches wide while using the fob, then shut independently and without warning. The contact stated that she had to manually pry the door open. The vehicle was taken to a dealer for inspection where the contact was informed that the door cable had snapped and wrapped around the motor. The motor and the cables would need to be replaced, the vehicle was repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the incident. The approximate failure mileage was 80,000.

- Victor, NY, USA

problem #17

Nov 272013


  • 85,000 miles


The contact owns a 2008 Toyota Sienna. The contact stated that upon inspection, the trunk door unexpectedly closed without any warnings. The contact also mentioned that the trunk door landed on her back and caused a bruise, which was a recurring injury. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was notified. The failure mileage was 85,000.

- Roundrock, TX, USA

problem #16

Nov 042013


  • 56,000 miles
When operating the rear lift gate (trunk) on this 2008 Toyota Sienna minivan, we have noticed the lift gate does not open all the way up, causing an average height adults to bump their heads on the lift gate. But worse, this happens on several occasions, the lift gate comes falling down, hitting an adult on the head, causing a head injury. Worse yet, if a child happens to be standing under the lift gate, the heavy trunk can cause a major injury or death! this is happening on a number of occasions, and should be covered by Toyota as this is not acceptable for a family minivan with less than 5 years old. I would like to see a safety recall issued on this type of malfunction and have this repaired or replaced free of charge by Toyota dealers.

- Raleigh, NC, USA

problem #15

Oct 072013


  • 82,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Toyota Sienna. The contact stated that while driving approximately 55 mph, the spare tire became detached from the vehicle causing the contact to drive over the tire and experience a failure with the brakes. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic for diagnosis. The mechanic stated that the spare tire cable was corroded and consequently caused damage to the braking system. The contact referenced NHTSA campaign number: 10V160000 (structure) but was advised by the manufacturer that the recall had expired and they would not honor the repair. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 82,000.

- Little Egg Harbor, NJ, USA

problem #14

Apr 062013


  • 55,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Toyota Sienna. The contact stated that the dashboard had began to deteriorate and she was concerned that the air bags could possibly deploy independently. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for inspection or repairs. The failure and current mileage was 55,000.

- Sarasota, FL, USA

problem #13

Sep 262011

Sienna 6-cyl

  • 37,231 miles
Could not stop after my ABS brakes locked up then were soft/absent, drove up on the center median, got back on the road attempting to go around the car infront on the right side couldn't due to other traffic then went back to the left got back up on the median. My passenger side front bumper corner went under the other driver's driver's side rear bumper corner lifting her car up into the air causing it to fall on top of the passenger side of my hood and front right fender crushing them, resulting in over 10000 dollars damage. No one was seriously hurt and neither car's airbags deployed.

- Alta Loma, CA, USA

problem #12

Mar 212013

Sienna 6-cyl

  • 30,142 miles
While backing the car in my driveway it suddenly accelerated and could not be stopped by braking before it struck stone wall, blowing the right rear tire, damaging the underbody and damaging the stone wall. Very scary!

- Chester, NY, USA

problem #11

Jul 052012


  • 60,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Toyota Sienna. The contact stated that the rear liftgate latch was found to be melted. The contact was unsure of how the latch became melted. The vehicle was not inspected by a dealer or an independent mechanic. The manufacturer was contacted and advised her that the entire door handle assembly needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was approximately 60,000. The current mileages were approximately 65,000.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #10

Oct 012012

Sienna 6-cyl

  • 52,000 miles
Power lift function of rear door malfunction. Upon engaging the power door, it immediately started going down once it reached the top. The struts or brackets are not able to keep the door open making the mechanism automatically shut the door. Extremely dangerous.

- Tustin, CA, USA

problem #9

Jun 012012

Sienna 6-cyl

  • 25,000 miles
Last June 2012 I was backing my vehicle in my home driveway when the rear hatch window suddenly exploded, showering large and small shards of glass outwards with enough force that glass particles were found approx. 15 ft. Behind the vehicle! the inside rear of the vehicle was filled with large and small shards, and broken and hanging glass was left in the window frame. When this was reported to the Toyota dealer, their rep replied that he had never heard of such an event occurring with a Toyota, and implied that I had broken the window by accident. Since my warranty doesn't cover glass, I turned in a claim to allstate insurance($100 deductible) and the window was repaired. On 11/08/2012 I was driving approx. 25 mph on a city street when the same window exploded with enough energy to produce a loud "bang!" I again turned in a claim to allstate($100 deductible, again!) and the window was repaired. While waiting at the repair shop, I asked the glass technician if he was aware of any similar incidents with Toyota windows. He replied, "oh yes, " and told me that he had just repaired a similar window on a Toyota owned by a kirtland, Ohio police officer, among others! I feel that this is a serious safety defect that should be investigated immediately, before someone gets severely injured!

- Richmond Heights, OH, USA

problem #8

Aug 132012

Sienna 6-cyl

  • 46,000 miles
Both sliding doors on our van started to slow when opening and closing and began to make a clicking or crackling noise. We took it to the dealer for inspection and were told that the frames were bent on both sides and we were responsible for the repair. The vehicle has never been in an accident and has low miles on it. There is no reason for the door frames to bend other than a manufacturer defect. I have read several complaints about the same problem on the 2008 Sienna. Toyota needs to be held accountable for this problem. There have been internet reports of doors coming open while driving. Our car is still under warranty and we are being told it is not covered.

- Castro Valley, CA, USA

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