Toyota Tundra Throttle Lag Problems

Updated on Author: Brian Jones

Updated on Author: Brian Jones

Lemberg Law is investigating complaints that the 2022 Toyota Tundra has a major problem with throttle lag. Vehicle owners report that they experience a lag when starting from a stop after pressing the gas pedal. This is usually followed by a surge, with the truck lunging forward.

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Is There a Problem with Throttle or Acceleration Lag in the 2022 Toyota Tundra?

All you have to do to find out about the throttle lag problem in the 2022 Toyota Tundra is log into the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) website and read the complaints. If that doesn’t convince you, log into Tundras dot com, a forum for Toyota Tundra Enthusiasts and you’ll see just how many unhappy customers there are out there.

It’s confusing for Tundra owners though, and they identify the problem in many different ways. Surprisingly, relatively few identify it as “throttle lag.” Nevertheless, almost all the complaints lodged with the NHTSA between January 25 and November 17, 2022, relate to this potentially dangerous problem. And there were a total of 29 complaints at this point in time.

What Problems are Tundra Owners Experiencing with Acceleration Lag?

Some Tundra owners call it a throttle lag while others simply call it a lag. Because it usually happens when accelerating from a stop, many link it to an acceleration issue. Others talk about the engine or acceleration surging. Some simply say that the throttle doesn’t respond. There are also numerous complaints about the Tundra losing power.

Complaints to the NHTSA

Let’s start with some of the complaints that identify throttle lag.

An owner from New York complains that there is a “throttle lag of 2-4 seconds when pulling out into traffic or crossing an intersection. Happens intermittently on a daily basis. Seems to happen more when (the) engine is warm but not at full operating temperature. Definitely not normal and potentially dangerous.” He mentioned the problem to the dealer who said “it was probably normal.”

Another New York owner talks about a throttle lag/surge. “Several times, from a stop, I’ve pushed on the accelerator pedal and the vehicle hasn’t responded, only to surge after. Something is wrong, multiple people have reported the issue to Toyota, but they haven’t responded.”

An owner from North Carolina talks about there being “lots of lag when starting from a stop.” It starts “a good 3-4 seconds after pressing the gas pedal.” Then the truck will lunge forward. “This is concerning when pulling out into traffic.” Even more concerning is the response from the dealer who said, “Yes, we know about it, there is no fix for the delay”. Clearly, as the complaint states, this is very unsafe.

Throttle Lag Seen as an Acceleration Issue

Reporting an incident that has recurred 3 times, an owner from Arizona explains what happens when accelerating from a stop. “I start to accelerate like normal for about 5 feet and then a total loss of power. This leaves me coasting into traffic and about 2 seconds later it takes off like normal.”

An owner from Michigan says his problem is intermittent. “When pressing the gas pedal, there is often a delay of 1 to 2 seconds, followed by an acceleration surge. This has created potentially hazardous conditions during otherwise routine traffic situations. The delay has resulted (in) unpredictability, and the surge has caused loss of control when on gravel surfaces.”

An owner from Washington states that “Randomly when trying to accelerate from a stop or a slow roll (less than 5 MPH), the throttle doesn’t respond for 2-3 seconds. Then the truck will surge. When I say it doesn’t respond I mean nothing happens, no RPM increase or anything. The dealership wants me to believe that it is turbo lag, but that is just a decrease in power, not total loss of acceleration. This has been an issue since delivery.”

Discussions on the Tundra Forum

A member of this forum who owns a 2022 Tundra Limited CrewMax started a “throttle lag/surge” thread on April 18, 2022, a week after taking delivery of his truck. He said he was experiencing a low-gear throttle lag that was followed by an acceleration surge. Asking other Tundra owners for comment, he said this wasn’t “typical turbo behavior.”

Someone suggested he try Sport Mode, because “I think the throttle response and turbo spool is really really quick and responsive… with minimal to no appreciable lag.”

Another member said he found that Sport Mode “seems to maintain a minimum rpm around 1,500 rpm in a gear that offers immediate response… even when I’m not feeling that ‘sporty’, it is then immediately responsive to throttle and much more ‘connected’ to my inputs.”

There is also a suggestion to try an ECM/learning rest.

In response to this, another member said: “It’s noteworthy that the issue, for me, seems isolated to stop and go. Very pronounced coming in and out of stop signs around our neighborhood, but (I) don’t feel a severe lag with shifts when up to speed. Generally, the transmission feels smooth above a certain speed, maybe 40+ mph.”

Some participants in the forum state that there isn’t any lag unless they use the ECO mode.

One suggestion, based on experience, is that it is “a delay in the shift programming when slow rolling. Like the transmission is between 1st and 2nd and the computer kills throttle input until the tranny decides on a gear. I’ve still never had it happen after coming to a complete stop. I’m assuming that the complete stop forces the tranny to select 1st gear so there is no delay in throttle response.”

Safety Concerns

Some members think it’s a safety issue. “This throttle lag from a dead stop happened to me the other day and almost got me killed. I haven’t replicated it and think it may have been fixed when the dealer updated my truck for one of the recalls. I don’t trust this truck.”

“Had this happen after dropping my kid off this morning… On a decent slope, going across a lane turning left, trees blocking (the) view of me and other drivers. It was so slow to get me out into the other lane it was fairly terrifying. Anyone speeding through and I would certainly get smoked from either direction.”

Known Issue with No Solution

This is the scary part. On April 28, 2022, a member who owns a 2022 Tundra Platinum said that a mechanic told him it is “a known issue.”

About 7 months later, another member reported that he had taken his truck to the dealer several times. The “dealer just had no solutions.”

What Should You Do if Your Tundra Exhibits Throttle Lag?

If you think your Toyota Tundra is a lemon you don’t have to live with it. Lemberg Law will assess your problems free of charge because the law makes Toyota pay the legal fees for lemon law cases.

Every year, auto manufacturers buy back, replace or pay cash settlements to thousands of ‘lemon’ owners like you. So, call us on our Helpline or fill out a contact form and we will see how we can’t help you.

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
  • Brent

    I do occasionally have a lag issue, I have not been put in harms way but its definitely noticeable and I definitely do not love it. What I do have though is much scarier. My brakes! They have locked up two times now with out nothing in front of me. Once on the highway at highway speeds! Almost got creamed! Once in the city at about 30.. the car behind me had to swerve around. Absolutely terrifying. Toyota has now reviewed the “black box” in my truck and have only found braking assist incidents. These incidents are not braking assist! They are full on locked up, and my gas pedal is dead for a couple of seconds. Absolutely horrible. Waiting for a Toyota rep to call me now.

  • Ben

    2023 Toyota Tundra SR5 and I have the same lunging issue as many others and last weekend it almost cost me my life. It accelerated when I was in a turn pulling out into traffic and the rear wheels broke traction making me lose complete control. I went from loving this truck to being downright scared to drive it. I called the dealer and all they are willing to do is give me an appraisal and tell me how much they’ll give me for it.

  • Alphonse

    I have the same lag issue and I drive a 2013 limited. Truck drives great but there are times getting on the highway the truck develops a delay then bam it’s off like a bat out of hell.

  • Austin

    I have a 2022 tundra SR5 TRD crew cab. It developed an acceleration lag shortly after purchasing the vehicle. It’s obviously subjective, but the problem seems to have gotten worse, and feels unsafe.

  • Omar

    I’m experiencing the same issue with my 2022 Limited TRD. I took it to the dealer and they tell me it’s normal. It feels like almost if you have a bad spark plug it lags and in sports mode it’s fine. Also I’m hearing a wind noise coming from under the hood like a jet sound when I accelerate.

  • Shiro

    Owner of a 23 hybrid limited here. Had the truck for 6 months, nothing but perfection. Then yesterday after a rain storm it started doing this. A good 1.5 second delay before the truck realized that I pushed the pedal. It survived through a Utah winter with no issues and then randomly it starts to do the input lag. I loved this truck. To know others experience it is both comforting and obnoxious simultaneously

  • Jameson K

    Literally just happened to me as I was turning left across traffic and my wife found this article. This is the third time I’ve experienced this but I never knew it had a name. Between this issue, the squealing brakes on a brand new truck, and the rear axle nuts shaking loose from driving, it seems Toyota has finally made a bad truck. Looking for a low mileage 2021 now.

  • William A

    I also have the 2022 SR5 TRD Tundra. I’m experiencing MAJOR lag from stop to acceleration. There is 3 options in drive mode, sport, standard, Eco. The only mode this don’t happen in is in sport. There is about a 2 second delay when taking off from a stop sign or traffic light. There IS times when I’ve had close calls with oncoming traffic. The dealership told me that it’s normal because all the other trucks do it….REALLY????

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