Toyota GR86 Engine & Oil Leak Problems

Updated on Author: Brian Jones

Updated on Author: Brian Jones

Lemberg Law is investigating complaints that the 2022 Toyota GR86 has an engine problem caused by its RTV silicone gasket. Vehicle owners report that the RTV sealant gets into the oil, clogs the filter, and causes engine failure. 

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Does the Toyota GR86 Have Engine Problems?

There are major problems with the 2022 Toyota GR86 that have resulted in engines failing. There are also reports of vehicles exploding into flames after the engine has blown up. The culprit isn’t the engine itself. It’s the RTV silicone gasket that leaks sealant into the oil of the vehicle.

Complaints filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) describe some of these catastrophic events. There are also numerous online reports and social media comments that highlight the issue.

One of the many social media comments rocketed the 2022 GR86 into the headlines in July. Blake Alvarado shared his experience on social media when Toyota refused to honor his warranty. Toyota based its refusal on the fact that Alvarado had taken his car to an autocross event. They claimed the car had been abused, producing pictures posted on social media as evidence.

At first, the powers at Toyota dug their heels in. But within weeks, they changed their minds. According to an article in The Drive, Toyota has now undertaken to “rebuild” the engine and ensure that the sealant will be applied “precisely to spec.”

The GR86 is marketed as a sports car, with Toyota boasting it has a “renewed commitment to sports car engineering.” In their U.S. press release dated June 2, 2021, the company boasts that the all-new GR86 has been “track-tested” and “pro-driver approved.” This earns it a Gazoo Racing badge.

Alvarado’s comment to The Drive is that he was glad he won’t be punished for using his car as it is marketed.

What’s Wrong with the Engine in the Toyota GR86?

Many owners of the 2022 Toyota GR86 are experiencing major issues. These all involve excess RTV sealant that is used on the oil pan and timing cover getting into the oil. This can clog the oil pickup tube and filter, which restricts oil flow causing oil starvation in the engine. This can cause premature motor failure and catastrophic events.

Owners of the 2022 Subaru BRZ are experiencing the same engine problems. It is no secret that Toyota owns close to 20% of Subaru and that it is Subaru’s largest single shareholder. Additionally, the GR86 and BRZ have the same engine and are regarded as “near-twins.”

There are a growing number of NHTSA complaints about the RTV sealant/engine issue affecting the BRZ.

NHTSA Complaints About the Toyota GR86

The first complaint is dramatic, stating that the driver of the GR86 “was at a complete stop when the vehicle exploded into flames.”

Fortunately, the driver “was able to exit the vehicle safely before the vehicle was completely destroyed. The fire department arrived on the scene and extinguished the fire. The police arrived on the scene and filed a report. The vehicle was towed to the dealer, then towed to a body shop for investigation. There was no medical treatment on the scene.”

The driver of the vehicle “experienced smoke inhalation and reported to the emergency the following day.” Blood tests were carried out on the driver at the scene. The approximate failure mileage was 6,700.

A more recent complaint is from someone who is part of a national GR86 owners’ group on Facebook who are experiencing problems.

He says that they are all “ experiencing problems with the RTV silicone gasket that sits between the oil pan and the engine. It is breaking off and clogging the oil mesh net and the pump, causing the engine to starve for oil resulting in complete engine failure. And in the case of one 86 in California, the engine blew up and caught fire.”

He cites the case of Blake Alvarado “that has gotten a lot of attention on social media, where the owner was using it on the track which was an authorized Toyota track day.”

“The engine oil pump was blocked by RTV break off. Blocked the pump, starved the engine and it blew up and failed.

“Many owners have been recently encountering these issues. but with various end results. But the cause remains the same. I am asking you guys at NHTSA to issue a recall notice to Toyota for this issue.”

What Should You Do if Your Toyota GR86 Has Issues?

Lemberg Law is currently investigating complaints about the 2022 Toyota GR86 and the engine issues that owners are experiencing. If your RTV silicone gasket is causing the sealant to leak into the oil of your vehicle, you may have a lemon. Give us a call at 844-928-4443 or complete our case evaluation form. Our services are free. The law states that Toyota must pay all legal bills for lemon law cases.

Brian Jones

About the Author:

Brian Jones spent more than 30 years working as an ASE Certified Master Tech and Parts Specialist at multiple dealerships. Brian has become an authority in the industry, traveling across the country to consult for car dealerships and contributing his expertise as a writer for several major automotive publications. In his spare time, Brian enjoys working on pickup trucks, muscle cars, Jeeps and anything related to motorsports.

See more posts from Brian Jones
  • Joe

    Antoine, was anything done as of now? I’m going through the same thing

  • Frank C

    I was giving serious consideration to purchasing this vehicle in the future, and I have owned at least 7 Toyotas and never had a problem.
    However, the way corporate is dealing with these manufacturing defects and the righteous claims by owners is enough for me never
    to buy a Toyota again.

  • Antoine

    2023 GR86 MT
    TOYOTA TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Toyota USA Subaru of America, Inc.
    Toyota is denying my warranty due to low oil which caused rod knock. Just purchased this 6 months ago and Car has only 10,000 miles on it!!
    I’ll try to keep it short for you guys,
    Driving my kids home when my engine started making noise when I press on the gas. Went to get over on the lane to pull off the road then the vehicle lost all power. Luckily I was able to coast the car right at the exit off the freeway, once I got out to check the car I didn’t notice anything out of the ordinary and checked the fluid levels and everything seemed okay besides the noise that I heard. Car also was not wanting to start after a few tries, I then Decided to just get the car towed to the dealer because I have warranty (I assumed no issue with that since I just bought the car 6 months ago and now there is a manufacturer fail) apparently I was wrong….
    Towed to the closest dealer to look over my engine and see what’s wrong. From that point it all went downhill, before the service advisor even seen the car she began telling me the car is not going to be covered under warranty because I did not have my oil changed by Toyota. After the car sat for 3 days at the dealer, the same service advisor then called me to go over that the car is going to cost $20k to be repaired and warranty will not accept due to low oil level and said that they pulled out 3 qts of oil. She advised that she has been working for Subaru and Toyota for over 15 years and knows what she is talking about and that it is not the manufacture fault for the engine failing even though she admitted to not knowing anything about the car prior to that. From that point I felt that this advisor is completely wrong and disrespectful and I didn’t want to work with them anymore and needed a second opinion.
    She then asked for proof of oil changes which I then provided to the advisor and did not get a response back.
    From that point I called another local Toyota dealer to have my vehicle towed AGAIN.
    I advised the dealer where I purchased the car from and the dealer where it was being towed to of the situation. Once Modesto Toyota techs looked at vehicle again at a separate dealer they called and advised that warranty will not accept due to low oil because these engines are “sensitive” and that they wanted proof of oil changes. Once again I provided the information even though when I dropped off the car I left them with my oil change receipts. I also advised that the last dealership that was looking at my car drained out all of the oil and did not replace so that is why the car has no oil in it and that it is also in their notes for record.
    I advised them that I didn’t get any warning lights, low oil pressure, engine lights or any issues with my car for the last 3,000 miles since my oil change so how would it be the last oil shops fault. After the oil change in January me and the tech went over the entire car and nothing was out of the ordinary.
    After the second dealer service manager denied my warranty they advised me to have my insurance look into this and that they will take care of it.
    My insurance company was then contacted and they were on the case to investigate and arrived at the dealer next day.
    Insurance company then called me back stating that they do not understand why Toyota is denying this warranty and since the vehicle is so new it has to go through Toyota warranty and they need to provide a denial letter explaining why they are not doing my base warranty or powertrain warranty.
    It has now been 2 weeks since the car has been in the shop and we are still getting nowhere.
    Scheduled to get a call back from Toyota warranty department tomorrow and currently being denied to talk to anyone above the case manager.

  • Antoine H

    Engine failed at 10,000 miles Toyota refusing to honor manufacturer warranty due to the defect. My vehicle burned up so much oil but they’re denying because the previous last 2 oil changes were not done by a Toyota specialist. Toyota is deciding to deflect the blame and now quoting me $20,000 to replace engine. Tracy Toyota also denied a courtesy rental from day 1, first lying to me saying there are no cars available. Then when I request to deal with a different advisor Tracy Toyota refused and said I can pay for a rental through them out of pocket because these engines are fine and don’t experience any problems. There needs to be a recall on these engines.

  • Jamie

    Can a 2019 be included in this? We have a Toyota 86 with a blown engine at 50,000 miles.

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