Last post on Oct 07, 2013 at 1:21 PM
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Toyota Matrix, Transmission, Wagon
#377 of 573 2003 Toyota Matrix Transmission Failure
Jan 17, 2010 (4:09 pm)
Just unfortunately had this same problem!
Thanks for the info about reporting to www.safercar.gov
Hopefully there will be some recourse for us all!
Below is my report:
While driving down the highway one evening, an odd clicking sound was heard from the front end of our 2003 Toyota Matrix (manual transmission with 88,000 miles). The sound was louder with acceleration. After getting off the highway, the sound was noted to be louder in higher gears, and absent when the clutch was pressed down. The vehicle was brought in for service at our local Toyota dealer the next morning. After paying a $95 diagnostic fee, we were told the vehicle needed a new transmission at the estimated cost of $3300, with nothing being covered by any warranty or recall.
We brought the car to a transmission specialist for a rebuild. The bearings, rings, and two transfer gears were replaced, along with the clutch, at a cost of $2100. It is noted that the mechanic had a delay in getting the parts due to a manufacturer back order, reportedly from a high demand due to many others with the same problem with this makek/model car!
This is our first Toyota, which we bought due to their good reputation. It has been regularly maintained and subjected to only normal driving conditions. We have never had a vehicle with transmission problems and are shocked that this expensive repair was needed on such a young car. Toyota should be held responsible for covering the cost of what appears to be widespread transmission failure due to defective/inferior parts used on this vehicle!
#378 of 573 Re: Question about when the car makes the noise [k00dalgo]
Jan 18, 2010 (6:00 am)
I would tow it to the dealership before driving it any further. If the bearing is starting to fail you may need to just replace that. If you drive it and the bearing blows, the whole transmission and clutch is gone. Might be just a clutch problem as it seems to me from reading these that XRS has more clutch issues than transmission issues. Not sure if the parts are different than the non-XRS? Getting the clutch or bearing replaced is MUCH less expensive than the whole transmission obviously. Don't take the chance, get it looked at.
Mine seemed fine on the highway expect for a high pitched whining noise. Prior to that it just sounded like a hole in the muffler. One the whining started, and I tried to shift down to stop, crunching noises started. After stopping and then starting again to continue driving to the nearest town, shifting was very difficult and crunchy sounding. Once I got into highway speed it went along fine, until of course I had to shift down again to stop. After that it would not shift again into any gear and I could not drive it at all. Horrible sounds when I tried to shift.
#379 of 573 Re: Question about when the car makes the noise [k00dalgo]
Jan 18, 2010 (6:08 am)
By the way, this happened (message 378) Oct 2007 on a 5.5y old 2003 Matrix 5 spd. I bought mine within 3mths of them coming onto the market so mine was one of the earlier ones to die, back at message #86 or something on this board. I replaced the trans at a cost to me of $3000, Toyota paid the other $2000, and I sold the car immediately. I had an '84 Corolla from 1990-1998 that never gave me quite that much trouble until it was old. I'll never buy another Toyota the rest of my life and I tell everyone about my crappy experience.
I can't believe that just the other day I saw a commercial from Toyota advertising their great reliability! Must be a reason why they all of sudden have to advertise that. Used to be a well known fact, but not anymore! I really want to see a news story about this issue, but no luck yet after 2.5y of cars falling apart one by one.
#380 of 573 Re: trans trouble still in 07 [johnc19]
Jan 21, 2010 (1:34 pm)
I just took my 2006 5 speed (65K miles) in to Toyota due to transmission noises. Their $100 diagnosis confirmed that the noises were from the transmission and now they want $300 to take the transmission apart. I will go ahead with the repair and see if I can recover the cost from Toyota. I'll file a complaint with safercar.gov if Toyota is not forthcoming. My 96 Tacoma is still running on the same clutch and transmission after 235K.
#381 of 573 Toyota comes through!
Jan 22, 2010 (11:50 am)
In Message 380 I noted the failure of the manual transaxle in my 2006 Matrix at 65K miles. Today I heard from Classic Toyota in Waukegan, IL where I took it for diagnosis and repair that Toyota would spring for a new transmission. Didn't even have to ask! I still will have to pay about $1000 for the installation but it seemed to me to be a fair resolution of the issue. If the new tranny makes it to the 200K miles or so I expect from a Toyota I'll be a happy camper. Otherwise I'll let you know.
Thanks to those of you who have brought the problems with this transmission to Toyota's attention. I hope that you reach acceptable resolutions of your problems with Toyota as well.
#382 of 573 Re: Transmission Noise [mkharmon]
Jan 27, 2010 (6:17 am)
I have had the same occurrence with my '07 Matrix. The popping noise happens during drive and reverse. ALSO when I step into the car the idle revs up a tad bit and even when I am at a stop light. I dont know if this is typical car behaviour but removed my floor mats for 2 weeks and nothing changed. It has me concerned.
#383 of 573 Re: Transmission Noise [ms_matrix]
Jan 27, 2010 (1:55 pm)
I would take it to the dealer or call them at least. I think they've recalled a lot of cars for a problem unrelated to most of the ones posted here. Cars have been accelerating suddenly and uncontrollably or something like that. They've put a stop to ALL sales of many models and recalled them also. I hope Toyota goes down hard on this latest fiasco!!!
#384 of 573 problems on toyota matrix
Feb 21, 2010 (11:20 am)
yups i got a 2003 toyota matrix xrs 6speed and when i first bought the car i had to change my clutch at 23xxx miles then after that my clutch started slipping again so had it redone again that was at 40xxx miles.then i had my car sit for a while so i dont have to keep spending money to change my clutch then i finally drove it after like 1 year or so driving it then it started slipping again as of now its gona get a new tranny and clutch and axles so when thats done ill just give up on this car and trade it in already.toyota did not do a good job on there transmission.tried calling toyota but they wont do nothing because my car lost its warranty just because i dropped the car and put on a intake thats stupid if you ask me just because i dropped it and put a intake thats doesnt mean i lose my warranty but fxcx it already time for get another car shoots.by the way this is in hawaii,honolulu,
#385 of 573 BEST time to push for a recall???
Feb 22, 2010 (5:53 pm)
The thought of contacting the New York Times journalist covering the Toyota recalls has been in my mind lately....
I know that we "stick-shifters" are a minority in this country....however, shouldn't we be giving it a shot?
If enough of you support this idea, it would be probably necessary to gather phone numbers/emails of "victims" to raise awareness....?
#386 of 573 Re: BEST time to push for a recall??? [quiuri3803]
Feb 22, 2010 (6:19 pm)
I actually sent an e-mail to the NYTimes & National Public Radio a few weeks back when the Prius' problems started to come to light.
I agree, we should all voice this concern and maybe we'll get some response. My '04 Matrix died at 62,000 K.
the e-mail addresses I used are:
Here it what I wrote:
I have been reading and listening with great interest about Toyota and the latest design flaws with their newer models.
As a owner of a 2004 Toyota Matrix, with a failed manual transmission at 62,000 miles, I was disgusted and disappointed with the response I received from Toyota when I reported my problem. Manual transmissions last forever, and being a driver of "manuals" since the tender age of 16, I have never had a single one malfunction.
When I called to report the problem, representatives at Toyota Motor Company stated to me (and it seems others) that they had no record of a widespread problem.
When my particular issue cropped up, I turned to the internet forums to see if I was alone. I was shocked to find that I was not, and that Toyota dished the same story to my fellow 2003 and 2004 Matrix owners with their manual transmission problems.
My transmission died on the side of the road as I went to have Toyota take a look at the noise it was making. Had I been on a busy road at rush-hour I am sure I would have had a serious accident. Foot pedals that stick and brakes that don't work are major safety issues, to be sure, but I also believe that the transmission issues can pose serious risks to drivers as well and hat Toyota has not adequately acknowledged the problem.
For further reading about others with me in this bad transmission boat, please see: http://townhall-talk.edmunds.com/direct/view/.f0d9b0e/80
There are many posts on this site, some of which are related to clutches, but many of them are posts from owners with defunct manual transmissions.
I hope you will help to shed light on what seems to be a long-term and serious problem for Toyota.