Toyota Camry Hybrid Faces Investigation After Brake-Failure Complaints

Toyota Camry Hybrid owners claim brakes go out without warning.

Posted in Investigations

— The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has opened an investigation into alleged brake problems in 30,000 model year 2007-2008 Toyota Camry Hybrid electric cars.

NHTSA has received 59 complaints about loss of assisted braking, with over half the complaints filed in the last eight months.  About 24 incidents happened while traveling over 40 mph, two of those leading to the cars crashing.

Owners of the 2007-2008 Toyota Camry Hybrid have told CarComplaints.com of the same problems, along with a huge expense to fix the problems.

Mike, of Anaheim, Calif., said his 2007 Camry Hybrid was diagnosed as having a problem with the brake actuator but he was told it was nothing to worry about.  The only problem was Mike had a lot to worry about but didn't know it.  His brakes completely failed and caused a three-car accident.

"Thank God no one was injured but it upsets me that the dealer will not pay for this. My mechanic said that my car was in tip top condition and this thing should never fail. Of course the dealer will take no responsibility for it and the insurance company advises that because the brakes failed before the accident they will not take care of it either. This is such a pain. Actually its a 2500.00 Pain!"

Another California driver wrote to CarComplaints.com saying the brakes on their Camry Hybrid had a loud noise when the brake pedal was pushed.  The dealership diagnosed the problem as either the power brake booster or actuator and said the part needed to be replaced.

"They also told me that it would be $1900 for the part in approximately $430 in labor. The repair was not covered under warranty because coverage for that part expired at 36,000 miles.  I am of course furious that my $34,000 Hybrid Camry is in need of a $2330 repair for a problem which occurred before the car was two years old."

The investigation will try to determine if a safety defect exists and if the cars should be recalled.