really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
5,848 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

The NHTSA is the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints can be spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem. See the Back button — blue bar at the very top of the page — to explore more.

Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2018 Toyota Highlander:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

Get free help with your lemon!
close ad
problem #18

Aug 242019


  • 13,000 miles
The rear sunroof on our car shattered for no apparent reason on 8/24/19 while we were driving on the freeway (I-15 in northern Utah, around 8pm). There was no evidence of an impact from a foreign body when we were able to pull off and investigate. Initially the glass was cracked but intact, but when we continued down the road, the pieces started falling into the cloth cover. We contacted our local Toyota dealer today (8/26/19) and the shop manager told my husband that this was the second incident he'd heard of with a 2018 Highlander this month.

- Wellsville, UT, USA

problem #17

Aug 062019


  • 9,900 miles
While driving into grand teton np our Highlander's sunroof exploded loudly in what appeared to be a spontaneous fashion. No sign of a rock or other road debris was seen or found. Fortunately, our sun shade was closed and we were not showered with glass. We were traveling about 45mph and the weather was sunny and mild at about 68 degrees.

- Kirkland, WA, USA

problem #16

May 032019


  • 16,500 miles
Musty smell in the vehicle since November of 2018, vehicle brought to dealership early April 2019 with no resolution. Vehicle returned to dealership early May 2019. Water found under passenger carpet along with mold. Advised by Toyota no defective parts and there is nothing they can do.

- Wareham, MA, USA

problem #15

Mar 212019


  • 11,500 miles
Early today, 3/21/19, was alerted that my hatchback was open. The car had been locked for several hours, but when I came outside I was told by a friend that the hatch had just opened on it's own. About an hour later, I was driving after dark and received a blindside mirror alert--the closest car was at least two car lengths immediately behind me in the same lane. Shortly after, the caution light came on, beeped, the eco light came on, it beeped again and the eco light went off. About 40 minutes later, I had the bright headlights on with the auto dim enacted. The headlights went out, the dash lights went out, the radio stayed on, and the navigation screen got very bright. I had to return the light control on the signal switch away from the setting and then back to get the headlights and dash light to come back on. All events except hatch were when vehicle in motion. Hatch opened while parked and empty. All events were within approximately 2 hours of each other. 10000 mile service had just been completed 3/15/19 with no concerns noted.

- Chillicothe, MO, USA

problem #14

Feb 092019


  • 300 miles
Car vibration at 40mph and up and brake vibration too.

- Simpsonville, SC, USA

problem #13

Feb 192019


  • miles
After car has been driven, is off and sitting in locked garage after about 2 hours a loud buzzing sound can be heard which eventually changes to a low semi buzzing (almost like a computer downloading and a fan to cool it down). I've contacted the service department and left a detailed message, but no response. I'm aware of cyber security, and since my husband works for doe (wapa), it worries me. My husband alternates weekly on driving the Highlander or the 2000 Tacoma. When he doesn't drive the Highlander there is no noise, when he does the buzzing sound happens. This is too coincidental. Is this normal" the sound appears loudest by the right rear wheel well. It normally happens after 11:00 P.M. and completes before 11:30 P.M., however, over the past 4 days the schedule has changed. Tonight it ran from 8:00 P.M. to 8:35 P.M. what is going on with our new vehicle? is it safe for my husband to drive"

- Rancho Cordova, CA, USA

problem #12

Oct 012018


  • 2,044 miles
When vehicle is in motion blind spot monitoring system intermittently detects vehicles and has caused me to cutoff vehicles that are on the passenger side due to no detection. Dealer is unable to do anything since there is no system failure but it is a safety issue and will cause drivers to cutoff or turn into vehicles that are in there blind spots. This happens on city and highway driving and can fail at anytime without notice.

- St. Louis, MO, USA

problem #11

Jan 122019


  • 15,000 miles
During the winter or when the road is wet or muddy, the radar controlled cruise control, and other safety features shut down. This results in danger to the passangers who are told on the in dash screen to stop and clean the sensors. My back up camera was clouded and did not show a car behind me and I backed into it resulting in costly repairs.

- Rexburg, ID, USA

problem #10

Nov 062018


  • 8,000 miles
Sunroof exploded while driving ~ no incident of flying debris

- Mandeville, LA, USA

problem #9

Jul 292018


  • 5,100 miles
I had just made a left hand turn. I wasn't going more than 40 mph. I didn't have any cars next to me or in front of me when I heard a loud explosion. I pulled over because I assumed something hit my car, but didn't see any body damage. I started driving again and could hear air coming in like a window was down when I realized it was coming from my sunroof. I pulled back the sun shade to look at the sunroof when I saw my sunroof was shattered. I pulled over again to look at it and didn't see any rock or object that would have broken the sunroof. The sunroof had a hole and the glass was soldered throughout. It actually exploded on own.

- Newark, DE, USA

problem #8

Jul 182018


  • 500 miles
The blind side monitor, bsm, on the passenger side does not work! it does not consistently detect large semi-trucks, large pickup trucks, some SUV vehicles and random cars. The bsm on the driver's side of the vehicle works very well. I have been told by the Toyota dealership that this is happening to 2018 corolla's and also the Highlander. This is very dangerous since the system does not show a large vehicle in your blindspot as advertised and could lead to a serious accident. I presented the service department of Toyota video files substantiating by concerns and the immediately called for a Toyota corporation fts who requested my vehicle for their review. The service manager stated that they did indeed replicate the failure mode with the Toyota corporation representative but the Toyota representative said the system is working as designed! so Toyota has a bsm that will not sense a semi-truck in your blind spot on the passenger side but will on the drive side. I perceive that to be a protect Toyota liability response not a safety issue Focus. I have several video files documenting the bsm not working which I would be willing to share. The files are mov format and not a format listed as upload able in your system. The bsm monitor has not worked appropriately since I purchased the vehicle March 8, 2018. The denial by the Toyota fts was Wednesday, July, 18, 2018.

- Kawkawlin, MI, USA

problem #7

May 122018


  • 3,000 miles
I was recently in a vehicle accident in my 2018 Toyota Highlander with the pre-collision system. The pre-collision system was working well through out our trip but unfortunately did not work when it was most needed. We were involved in a pile up on interstate I-5 going at least 45mph and noticed that the pre-collision system that is so much being advertised did not work at all. There was no warning what so ever and definitely did not break on it's own as advertised. At the time of the hit the airbags deployed a little to late at least the passenger one where I was sitting. I am aware that we should not rely on those items but I sure wish it would have worked the way it was intended to do so.

- Puyallup, WA, USA

problem #6

Jun 112018


  • 11,500 miles
On June 11, 2018 I was driving my 2018 Toyota Highlander (that was purchased on January 31, 2018) on I-40 near burlington, nc when the moonroof on my car suddenly shattered. I had the visor closed on the moonroof so no glass entered the cabin. The entire moonroof shattered and there was a hole towards the rear of the moonroof. It was a clear day and the pavement was level. I did not see any objects from the road approach my car prior to the moonroof shattering. Later that day I took the vehicle to my car dealer and was told that it looked like an impact had caused the moonroof to shatter. I had the moonroof repaired by the dealer at a cost of $968. I learned from research on the internet that there have been numerous incidents of shattering sunroofs/moonroofs involving multiple manufacturers. I reported the situation to Toyota's national customer service center. I expressed my concern about how the moonroof can shatter on the sunroof when I did not see anything that could have caused that type of damage and that I was aware that Toyota and other manufacturers had experienced problems with sunroofs/moonroofs. I provided photographs of the moonroof. After initial being told that my situation would be handled at no charge to me, I was directed to a customer service representative who I was told was specifically assigned to address these types of claims. That representative advised me that the moonroof shattering was caused by an "outside influence" and that Toyota was not responsible for fixing the moonroof. He further advised that there was no "program" in existence that would allow my verhicle to repaired at no charge to me. I asked the representative if Toyota's position was that the moonroof was functioning properly when it shattered based on some unknown and undefined "outside influence" and I was that it was not the case.

- Greensboro, NC, USA

problem #5

Jun 152018


  • 1,600 miles
I was driving on a road with two lanes southbound. No one was in front of me in either lane. A car was in the process of making a right turn from the shoulder. It was not on the highway nor was it headed back toward the highway. The pre-collision system attempted to bring me to a screeching halt without warning and for no apparent reason. I suddenly went from 65 mph to about 20 mph. Fortunately, there was no one behind me. They would have been as shocked as I was by the action of my vehicle and probably would have rear-ended me.

- Abilene, TX, USA

problem #4

May 092018


  • 1,500 miles
I bought a 2018 Toyota Highlander from a dealership brand new approximately one month ago. The car has less than 1500 miles on it. I was driving on the freeway and my rear passenger tire blew out. There is a hole in the tire. There is no object in the tire and I didn't see anything that I ran over. There is no damage to the body or the tire well.

- Merced, CA, USA

problem #3

May 012018


  • 5,076 miles
Took my 2018 Highlander to have the 5000 mile service done. Upon entering the service department I spoke with one of the certified technicians. I told him my vehicles is pulling to the left. They then did a alignment and tire rotation. After leaving mike wood Toyota of uniontown I noticed that my vehicle was now pulling to the right. When I got home I examined the tires closely only to notice the tires were cupped and starting to feather out on the inner and outter edges. I then scheduled another appointment two days later showing the dealership service department my findings. The service tech got in and took a ride with me. He also drove my 18 Highlander. He observed my vehicle pulling and the cupling and feathering of my tires. He stated that the tires should not have done that in 5000 miles. I am waiting now to see if Toyota is going to replace my tires. Or if the tires are defective

- Daisytown, PA, USA

problem #2

Feb 232018


  • 600 miles
Pcs (pre collision system) and pedestrian detection system do not function as advertised by the manufacture and assured by the dealer. There is no indication or any evidence that such a system exists in the car. Therefore, it gives you a false sense of security.

- Victoria, MN, USA

problem #1

Jan 262017


  • 140 miles
I was traveling on highway 78 by stone mountain and heard a loud bang. The car behind me signaled to me to stop. He said something flew off my car and hit his windshield. I could not immediately figure out what had happened. I decided to look at the sunroof and discovered that it had shattered. This happened about 11:30 pm the same day I bought the car.

- Jonesboro, GA, USA