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Transmission Woes Prompt Warranty Extension On Toyota RAV4 Models

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2001 Toyota RAV4

2001 Toyota RAV4

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Toyota has announced that it will provide an extended warranty on 2001-2003 model-year Toyota RAV4 models, according to the New York Times Wheels Blog, for an issue with the automatic transmission and electronic control module.

The issue, which affects around 235,500 vehicles, can lead to a damaged, rough-shifting transmission.

So far, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration had logged more than 300 owner complaints, reporting sluggish acceleration, although no accidents have been directly attributed.

While the RAV4 for those model years was originally covered for five years or 60,000 miles on powertrain components, Toyota is extending coverage to ten years or 150,000 miles.

The automaker is also offering to reimburse current or former owners for repairs already made.

The extended coverage came after pressure from the California Air Resources Board; under state law that agency can force an automaker to repair vehicles or provide a warranty extension if such an issue could lead to greater air pollution.

Although Toyota is making good by not only offering the extension in California, where it’s required, but throughout the U.S., the NY Times outlines that the automaker has been slow to react to this issue, as it’s known about it for four years and yet had previously rejected many owners’ claims when transmissions had to be replaced.

[NY Times Wheels Blog]

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Comments (5)
  1. Good luck collecting on this one. You have to have one of the 235,000 cars Toyota considers affected. Even if you own a 2002 Rav4 that has or had a faulty ECU, they could care less. We spent $4235 to have both the ECU replaced and reprogrammed, and the transmission ruined by that unit also replaced. My faith in Toyota is waning, and I have owned 5.
     
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  2. The important thing about this situation, is that if your RAV4 is not covered, you should repair the ecm computer, which is the part that starts all this problem when it fails. It suddenly looses control over the automatic transmission shifting solenoids and if you keep driving it like that, the transmission will add to the problem.
    If it starts in second or third gear, you should stop using your RAV4 and have the ecm repaired. Otherwise, you will burn the clutches of the transmission in no time.
    The cost of a new ecm is around $1250, so it is a wise decision to have it repaired instead. Transmission repair bills are even higher, up to a few $1000's.
    Symptoms to identify that your RAV4 is having this problem are:
    -Your RAV4 model year is 2001, 2002 or 2003
    -Loss of power
    -Erratic shifting
    -Harsh Shifting
    -Hard engagement when put in reverse
    -Starting in second or third gear
    -Check engine light, P0750, P0753, P0755, P0758, P1760 codes
    You will know if it is starting in 2nd or 3rd gear if you feel your RAV4 very heavy when launching, that is, moving from 0 MPH.
    There is a good article about this issue, with more details at:
    www.qcwo.com/technicaldomain/harsh-shifting-problems-on-toyota-rav-automatic-transmission-and-problem-repair
    Hope this helps,
    Richard
     
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  3. There is a class action suit in the US District Court of the Northern District of California C. Milligan vs Toyota MotorSales USA, Inc. (#C09-05418-RS),regarding ECU's and automatic transmissions on 2001 to 2003 RAV4's. Copy of lawsuit accessable through google.com. Case's last entry is a continuance issued 9-14-10, pending court-approval of settlement.
     
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  4. My Rav 4 has had the ecm replaced 3 times. The transmission has been replaced once. It has been in the shop for 4 months trying to get the 4th repair to the ecm and transmission successfully completed. Four months with no success in unreasonable. My question is - what recourse do consumers have if the repairs cannot be succesfully completed? I have no confidence that Toyota can repair the vehicle. I will not buy another Toyota vehicle.
     
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  5. I work for a company here in MI ECU TECHNOLOGIES and we offer a service to fix the rav4 shifting problem. The problem is not the transmission. Most shops will think the hard shift between 2nd gear and 3rd gear is a transmission shifting problem but the rav4 ecm is where the real problem lies. The ecm tells the solenoids when to shift. Here is the website where to get this problem fixed for good. Log on to the site at http://www.ecmoutlet.com/rav4-ecm.html We can replace your ecm with part number 89661-42812 or a different part number and do all the programming on site.
     
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