Electrical, engine and powertrain issues among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners
The Toyota Camry has been in production since 1982. It’s become known as one of the most reliable vehicles in America’s history, but recent reports suggest the newer models don’t live up to the same standards. Still, Toyota must not have received the memo because this year’s lineup features the tagline, “daring side of dependability.” Let’s take a closer look at the issues with the powertrain, electrical system and engine on this popular sedan.
Click on other model year to view more problems: 2020 2021 2022
Problems with the Transmission
The powertrain includes all of the components that transmit the power to the wheels. This consists of the transmission and engine. The powertrain is considered one of the most critical systems on the vehicle. When it malfunctions, it’s challenging to get the car to move at all.
One person experienced these problems first hand and wrote about it on an Edmunds review. “I think the 2018/19 Camry’s are the best looking car out there. I have all the safety features and they work very well. However, the automatic transmission is horrible. Shifting when accelerating like from a red light or stop sign is bad. Usually, there is a delay and the car jerks. Also during acceleration there is a lot of engine noise. For these reasons I cannot recommend it and although it’s beautiful it’s not fun to drive and I’m already considering getting rid of it to get a different car. Wish I had of paid more attention during my test drive.”
The company has remained strangely quiet regarding these problems. There are no recalls, investigations or service bulletins that we are aware of. Instead, they’ve chosen to issue recalls on problems such as an incorrect label which might cause people to overload their vehicle. While that’s certainly a priority, how much more should a malfunctioning transmission be? After all, who wants to be the last one sitting at a light that’s turned green? It only takes a matter of seconds before someone starts blowing their horn.
Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2019 Toyota Camry Transmission Problems
REACCELARATION SHOCK, TRANSMISSION LAG, ESPECIALLY UPON RE-ACCELERATION FROM COASTING OR WHEN TRYING TO OVERTAKE SOMEONE ON THE HIGHWAY, DANGEROUS. LUGGING AND SHIFT SHOCK ON DOWNSHIFTING AND UPSHIFTING, FEELS LIKE YOU GET REAR ENDED SOMETIMES.
WHEN ON A COMPLETE STOP AND STEP ON THE GAS PEDAL THE CAR FEELS LIKE IT’S STUCK IN NEUTRAL AND THEN IT JERKS INTO GEAR.
THE TRANSMISSION ON THIS CAR DOES NOT SHIFT THE WAY IT SHOULD. WHEN ACCELERATING FROM A STOP THE TRANSMISSION SEEMS TO HAVE TROUBLE DECIDING WHAT GEAR IT SHOULD BE IN AND THE SHIFT POINTS ARE TOO HIGH ESPECIALLY WHEN SHIFTING INTO 3RD OR 4TH GEAR. THERE IS SOME SERIOUS HESITATION THAT SHOULD NOT BE PRESENT. ALSO, WHEN DOWNSHIFTING IT FEELS LIKE SOMEONE TAPPED THE BRAKE PEDAL BECAUSE IT SLOWS DOWN SIGNIFICANTLY. IF A CAR BRAKES IN FRONT OF ME AND I HAVE TO SLOW DOWN AND THEN GET BACK ON THE GAS TO SPEED BACK UP IT TAKES TOO LONG FOR THE CAR TO GET UP TO SPEED TO KEEP UP WITH TRAFFIC. THIS HAS ALL HAPPENED ON SIDE STREETS AS I HAVE NOT TAKEN THE CAR ON THE HIGHWAY YET.
2019 Toyota Camry Complaint Summary
|Complaint Category||Number of Complaints|
|Unknown Or Other|
|Fuel System, Gasoline|
|Vehicle Speed Control|
Problems with the Engine
Just as vital is the engine. It’s considered the heart of a vehicle, pumping out precious power to get drivers where they want to go. Unless it is reliable, the car is virtually worthless.
Just read this one review from the NHTSA website, “I rented a 2019 Toyota Camry for 9 days. Many times while accelerating, the engine loses power. It is especially dangerous when attempting turns in front of ongoing traffic. The car would start to go then just seem to die as I was making the turn. Then, engine lights would come on and it would just start coasting. The car never stalled, it just would not go. I learned very quickly to not think I could make a turn into the oncoming traffic safely unless I had enough room to coast across the intersection. Also it was very dangerous when trying to merge into traffic. I looked this up on the Internet and it seems to be a very common problem with Camrys but I do not understand why there is not a recall or, at least, an investigation started by NHTSA.”
Does it surprise anyone to know that the company is also quiet on this front? There’s nothing to report about the transmission or the engine. It’s as if everything is fine; nothing to see here. For those people that have children, it’s like playing hide and seek with a baby. They cover their eyes and think no one can see them, even though everyone knows they are still there. Drivers see the problems with the Camry; they can’t be hidden.
Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2019 Toyota Camry Engine Problems
TL* THE CONTACT OWNS A 2019 TOYOTA CAMRY. THE CONTACT STATED THAT THE ENGINE MADE A LOUD CLICKING NOISE. WHILE DRIVING AT AN UNKNOWN SPEED, THE VEHICLE VIBRATED AND SHOOK. THE VEHICLE WAS TAKEN TO SWOPE TOYOTA WHERE IT WAS DIAGNOSED THAT THE VEHICLE MAY NOT HAVE THE CORRECT MOTOR. THE VEHICLE WAS ALSO TAKEN TO OXMOOR TOYOTA THE DEALER TEST DROVE THE VEHICLE AND WAS UNABLE TO DUPLICATE THE ENGINE FAILURE. THE VEHICLE WAS NOT REPAIRED. THE MANUFACTURER WAS CONTACTED THE FAILURE MILEAGE WAS 1,500
I RECENTLY PURCHASED A 2019 TOYOTA CAMRY IN FEBRUARY. I’VE NOTICED THAT WHILE DRIVING THE VEHICLE, THE ENGINE SEEMS TO HESITATE AND JERK WHEN ACCELERATING. THIS IS A CAUSE FOR CONCERN BECAUSE WHEN SLOWING DOWN AND GIVING THE VEHICLE GAS, IT CAUSES THE RPMS TO SHOOT UP AND THE CAR JERKS FORWARD. THIS CAN CAUSE THE VEHICLE TO STRIKE A VEHICLE OR ANYTHING IN FRONT OF IT. IT IS NOT ANY DIFFERENT IF THE VEHICLE IS STATIONARY OR IN MOTION. IN EITHER SITUATION THE VEHICLE IS HESITATING AND JERKING WHILE ACCELERATING. IT IS ALSO DANGEROUS TO TURN INTO ONCOMING TRAFFIC. IF THE CAR STRUGGLES TO ACCELERATE IT CAN CAUSE A COLLISION.
Don’t be stuck with a lemon. You have legal rights to cash, return or buyback.
The law makes Toyota pay legal fees.
We've fixed thousands of lemon problems. Message or call 877-795-3666 today.
Problems with the Electrical System
A car’s electrical system goes beyond just the battery and alternator. It also runs just about every component on the vehicle, making it extremely complicated and necessary at the same time. When a driver experiences trouble with this vital network of connectors, trouble can present itself in many ways.
Here’s one review from the Edmunds website depicting one way the electrical system fails in a Camry. “Purchased new May, 2019, have only 900 miles to date, and twice received in-car alert that the… power steering electronics had malfunctioned and MUST hold on to steering wheel. Took car to dealer and after a review, was advised that the malfunction code was cleared and I was good to go. The next day when my wife was driving in expressway traffic the malfunction kicked in and she lost power steering and had to maneuver to the side to avoid an accident. Got the car to the dealer and was informed that electronic power steering module needs to be replaced. WOW!!! Schedule to pickup today but my wife is fearful about driving it. Dilemma!!!”
Of all ten service bulletins provided by the company regarding electrical systems, none of them deal with anything remotely important. Instead, the automaker discusses trouble connecting to Bluetooth and using the audio system. While it’s possible these malfunctions might seem catastrophic to some drivers, it’s not nearly as essential as whether the power steering works or not.
Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2019 Toyota Camry Electrical Problems
BRAND NEW CAMRY 2019 (3,105 MILES, OWNED FOR 2 MONTHS) LOST ALL POWER WHILE DRIVING ON THE HIGHWAY – DRIVER CONSOLE (SPEEDOMETER, SCREEN, ETC) WAS COMPLETELY TURNED OFF – HAD TO PULL OVER IMMEDIATELY. UPON TURNING THE VEHICLE OFF AND RESTARTING, THE FOLLOWING WAS DISPLAYED; MASTER WARNING LIGHT (YELLOW TRIANGLE WITH EXCLAMATION MARK), POWER STEERING WARNING LIGHT, DRIVER SCREEN IN CONSOLE DISPLAYED MESSAGE READING “STEERING POWER LOW. VISIT YOUR DEALER”. VEHICLE WAS TURNED BACK OFF. AFTER A FEW MINUTES, THE VEHICLE WAS RESTARTED – NONE OF THE PREVIOUS WARNINGS WERE DISPLAYED. NO SYMPTOMS OR ISSUES HAVE OCCURRED SINCE. TOOK VEHICLE TO THE DEALER THE NEXT DAY AND NOTHING WAS FOUND. SUSPICIOUS COMPONENTS / POTENTIAL ISSUES WERE CHECKED AND NOTHING WAS FOUND. WAS TOLD TO RETURN IF IT HAPPENS AGAIN.
DRIVER WINDOW DOES NOT GO DOWN ALL THE WAY HAVE TO TRY SEVERAL TIMES AND WHEN I PUT IT UP IT SEEMS TO WANT TO JUMP OFF TRACK. PUSHES WINDOW SLIGHT INWARD. RIGHT REAR PASSENGER WINDOW MAKES STUTTERING MOTION WHEN GOING UP. NOT GOOD
Your Lemon Law Legal Rights
Think you have a lemon? Sit back and let the experts work out your lemon case at no cost to you. The law makes Toyota pay legal fees. You may be able to get your lemon out of your life. Every year, auto manufacturers buy back, replace or pay cash settlements to thousands of ‘lemon’ owners like you.