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Toyota Corolla Electric-Assist Power Steering (EPS)

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Comments

  • spikejr1spikejr1 Posts: 13
    Update - [terceltom] I agree that somone should have contacted me about the "fix" that has been available. Glad to read that [pekelvr] has had a positive outcome with the new "fix". As for what the tech rep told me last March...I dropped the vehicle off at a local dealership so their Regional Tech Rep could investigate. I was called the next day and said I could pick up the vehicle...I had to ask what the findings were! The maint rep that I was speaking to said that all he knew was everything was "ok" and no problems were found. I asked to speak with the Tech Rep that did the work and he "wasn't available". I asked if any adjustments were made, otherwise I was confident that the problem still existed. After pressing the issue, he said that a minor alignment problem was corrected. I asked him to send me a copy of the alignment, along with the Tech Reps name. The "Vehicle Alignment Report" arrived all by itself in an envelope...no other names or info was included. After reviewing the report, I noticed that the top of the report didn't have the VIN, Tech Name, License #, Customer Name, Odometer....NOTHING that would identify this was my vehicle other than the date of service...In fact, it had 2009 Toyota on the report (I own a 2010) so I really doubt they sent me an accurate report...OR, this just tells me the level of interest they really had in investigating the problem...

    As for the NHTSA offer - I have contacted them and they have decided that they do not want to lease the vehicle since they will be opening up the electronics...Also, they do not want to return the vehicle to a private party after that type of testing. Instead, they asked if I would sell the vehicle to them for testing. I am in the process of sending all the information (I have everything from window stickers to maint records) so they can make an offer...I suspect it will be KBB / Edmunds values but we will see. I also asked if they knew about the EPS "fix" and they do...they said that customers have to ask for the fix...Toyota is not sending notifications or "recalling" the vehicles, but they are doing this as a "customer sevice".

    Also, the NHTSA said if I were to install Toyota's EPS "fix" then they would be no longer interested in buying / testing my vehicle...

    If the $ figure is acceptable, I will sell it to them and move on...if not, then I will get the Toyota "fix" and see if that works...
  • biffprestonbiffpreston Posts: 59
    edited August 2010
    I own a 2009 Corolla Le and I am not optimistic about the "fix". I do not believe it will change a single thing about the extremely poor handling characteristics. I believe the technical service bulletin that was issued was not really about a fix but more about a customer service strategy. Take your car to the dealer and they will do an alignment check and check the air in your tires. They will place your car on a high tech machine that will check your alignment. It will inevitably as with practically any other car on any road anywhere in the world register it as being out of alignment to some degree regardless of how minute. The customer service department will come back and tell you they have made some adjustment and that they believe the car is "fixed". It will fool a certain percentage of people. Keep complaining and they might offer to stick a new computer chip in. It's not going to make the car handle better. Relative to what I call a normal car it is still going to feel like your driving in mud or sand. Very sluggish handling. Don't expect to be able to make sharp turns. I do not believe for one instant that the steering wheel will center itself like in what I call a normal car either.

    Something else I would like to say. The NHTSA, you know the very same people that people are complaining to regarding the deleterious electronic assist steering in the Corollas is also very much pafrtially responsible for these electronic steering systems being placed in the cars in the first place. Surprise! The NHTSA is responsible for establishing CAFE standards. Corporate Average Fuel Economy. It's sort of a racket I believe. They set unreasonably high standards that cannot be attained with normal fossil fuel powered vehicles and then the auto manufacturers are fined for not being able to meet the intentionally unattainable standards then the fines are passed on to the consumer. Sounds like a sneaky way to transfer money from consumers to whomever in government gets it in the end. Real honest way to take peoples money. Auto manufactursrs are switching to EPS steering largely in part due to the fact that you get 1 or 2 extra miles per gallon per car with EPS, at the expense of course of having a car that drives like a motorized shopping cart. I'm not sure of the formula but I believe this saves auto manufacturers a little money by increasing the miles per gallons of their cars even by 1 or 2 miles. So people who are complaining to the NHTSA are complaining to some of the very people responsible for the problematic steering to begin with. What do you actually expect the NHTSA to do about it?
  • pekelvrpekelvr Posts: 61
    WOW Im so serious does the forum not post my messages Im wondering...the fix works I have a Corolla and i can testify it worked. Previously I would not permit my grandson to ride in my car and now that i have the new Computer box and I drove in fact all the way from Fuquay Varina NC to The beach on the east coast over a 2 hour car ride Im happy with The fix" i posted it earlier and if you look for it you will see the facts of my testimony. The fix works but you have to call Toyota 1st call the Experience hotline and get assigned a case manager, they in turn call your dealer repair service and tell them to schedule the appt for your car with you. Your assigned a manager at Toyota and they take the car for the day because this fix requires taking out the whole dash. Good luck
  • pekelvrpekelvr Posts: 61
    I think there are 2 discussions going on but under different Forums about the same issues EPS and Steering. Which may be why and I apologize that some didnt get my message about "the fix." I had posted under steering.

    Maybe some would find more info there perhaps and could see different stories also. The fix works and i would testify to it because i had already sought legal representation after my 2008Corolla fiasco and i still have a lawyer because I lost $7,000 when I traded it in for the 2010 that supposedly didnt have the EPS issue. I lost the money and will probably be paying it and the interest for it for the next year or so. Toyota devalued there own vehicles which they KNOW has an EPS defect. they also haven't announced that they have a fix and you have to go to them as their field reps don't contact you. You have to use language like I did which was "my car is going to kill me" and what is Toyota going to do about it?
  • pekelvrpekelvr Posts: 61
    i went to a dealer just to see what my 2010 Corolla Sport model would go for and i have 9,000 mile on it...i was told $13,000 and its a gift...LOL Dont sell it call Toyotas experience hotline and tell them if they dont do something that your lawyer will contact them after the car kills you!!!
  • terceltomterceltom Posts: 1,017
    I think your very mistaken about the real problem in the first place. The Corolla owners that are having this problem are complaining about the inability to keep the steering on line and that the steering is too touchy. I haven't heard one complaint about the steering wheel not centering itself after a turn or not being able to make sharp turns or not even about the sluggish handling, as you describe. In fact, one poster has already stated that after his computer "fix", his car is just fine. Why all the negativity and over statement of the underlining problem?
  • terceltomterceltom Posts: 1,017
    edited August 2010
    I must say I'm somewhat skeptical myself about your story as you keep addressing your problem as an EPS problem when in fact the 2008 Corollas, like yours, were never even built with EPS. You have avoided addressing this question every time it has come up on this thread. Why?
  • terceltomterceltom Posts: 1,017
    edited August 2010
    It does sound like your he**bent on suing Toyota. You sued them for your 2008 now you want to sue them for your 2010.
  • biffprestonbiffpreston Posts: 59
    edited August 2010
    EPS is dreadful period. Regardless of the fact that most of the complaints regarding the EPS relate to difficulty keeping the car mocing in a stright line my car does not crisply or accurately maneuver. Sharp turns are out, a thing of the past. I really wanted a car that handled well. There are a lot of people who absolutely do not care about handling. I do not understand them. I always want a car that handles well on the road. It's rather ridiculous to me not to care.Your life may or may not depends on being in a vehicle with good handling and that is setting aside the comfort and fun of driving a car with good handling I made a mistake in buying my Corolla and I am paying for it with the daily dislike I have for driving it. I can't speak for other Corollas but not for one instant do I believe that any other 2009 or 2010 Corollas with EPS drive any better. At low speeds the steering feels loose and wobbly and at high speeds you really get what I like to call "the shopping cart effect". You struggle to keep the car moving in a straight line. At all speeds whether you are changing lanes or making a turn it feels akin to a car with regular steering with flat tires or a car with regular steering with tires partially submerged in muddy ground. Sluggish. You simply cannot maneuver the car well, it is impossible. I mean something that used to be as simple as making a quick left turn into a drug store parking lot at 20 mph then a sharp right then a quick sharp left into a parking space is no longer possible. You must go very slow with the EPS. It's a lot like senior citizen driving. Painfully frustratingly slow driving wth both hands clutched on the wheel wiggling or wobbling it back and forth and hanging on for dear life.
  • terceltomterceltom Posts: 1,017
    Okay, now your addressing the real problem some are having. It does sound like you have one of the infected Corollas. I on the other hand, have had no problem with my 2009 Corolla XLE from day one. In fact, I not only love the steering of this car, but the handling as well. Sharp, one finger turns are no problem ! Set the cruise, tune the XM radio with 400 watts of JBL power and I'm set. Oh, and by the way, I don't work for Toyota either.
  • Im not saying that when your puling in or out of a parking space that it is not easy to turn the steering wheel with one finger or otherwise. I do not believe cars with EPS are going to handle well in general. There is going to be a tradeoff for getting that extra gas mileage and that cheap manufacturing cost. There is no such thing as something for nothing. I have read many things about EPS and enthusiasts who prefer good handling universally hate EPS for its deleterious effect on handling and maneuverability. If i could afford to sell the thing which is what I am going to try to do and then buy a car that I find handles appropriately then I am going to do just that. I spoke to Toyota Executive about the car and I am about to speak to them again tomorrow or the next day. I have attempted to get them to buy it back for an adjusted amount. I do not believe that they will but I am about to try again. I will then attempt to sell it if they do not. Very unhappy with the car and do not believe for one instant that other Corollas handle any better or that there is a fix for the poor handling.
  • terceltomterceltom Posts: 1,017
    "do not believe for one instant that other Corollas handle any better or that there is a fix for the poor handling"

    Now there you go again reverting back to your handling problems. Okay you don't have to believe me that my 09 Corolla drives as straight as an arrow on the highway and you can continue to judge everybody elses Corolla by your own problamatic one. But no one ever said there was a fix for any "handling problems" that you keep referring to. No one even said there WAS any handling problems whatsoever, but that's another matter. The fix was for the EPS straight line drifting effect.
  • You can drive the car straight on the highway. It just requires constant corrections. Both hands on the wheel wiggling it back and forth a little continously. I would have to drive the car after getting the "fix" to believe that that "fix" corrects this problem. I don't belive the complaints refer to people not being able to keep the car moving perfectly straight it just requires a level of effort and attention that I would call ridiculous on any road trip beyond 30 minutes on a straight road or highway. After about 30 minutes it turns into a ridiculously tiring and nervewracking experience. Why buy a car like that when there are alternatives?
  • spikejr1spikejr1 Posts: 13
    edited August 2010
    I understand your skepticism - it is hard to believe that stability can be fixed by a computer. However, this forum has already had 1 poster who has had the fix completed, and now reports that the vehicle is stable. I haven't read any posts that say the fix was done and the problem continued. With that in mind, I'd recommend that you speak with Toyota again, and you "demand" the new fix. Worse case is no change...best case is you have a solid driving vehicle. Also, you could then let the rest of us know if the fix is 2 for 2...or it didn't work so the fix is hit or miss...

    Update on my NHTSA - Apparently there are 2 of us who are trying to sell our car...and they are only going to purchase 1 for testing. I have to submit a blind bid as to what I would accept as a sales price. The only good news is that both of the cars are "S" models with nearly identical features / miles. I will most likely bid near the dealer retail since there is a fix available if they don't buy the vehicle. My hope is the NHTSA is going to find the issue that Toyota has the fix for, and tell them to recall the vehicles instead of just fixing "customer complaint" vehicles.
  • terceltomterceltom Posts: 1,017
    Could there be a pattern that most of these cars with the EPS steering problem are "S" models?
  • spikejr1spikejr1 Posts: 13
    Possibly - I'd be interested in seeing how many of the posts listed the trim level of their Corolla. But I'm too lazy to re-read almost 300 posts :)

    Wonder if the additional body effects on the S model affect the wind flow sufficiently that a unique computer fix is required for steering stability? There was a slight styling change in the 2009 to 2010 air dams...
  • almichalmich Posts: 11
    I feel your pain and I am in the same situation. I bought my 2010 Corolla S because I wanted a reliable car that was inexpensive to own, and driving by brother-in-law's 2000 Corolla CE was not that bad (steering). I have recently became aware of EPS and the issue on the Corollas, and I am trying to sell it and get a car that won't wander on the road. I wish I had known about this issue sooner.
  • I'm with you almich. I would look at the Mazda 3's or Honda Civics. The 3;s I think use an electro hydraulic. I've read they handle extremely well. Test drive it like you normally drive. I'm going to test drive one soon as well as a new Civic. I would definately take a prospective car out on the highway and make dam sure it tracks straight and make sure it turns and steers well. I miss being able to make crisp turns and I miss being able to turn the radio on and just relax when I drive down the street. With column mounted EPS there is no consistent relationship between the turning of the steering wheel and the wheels on the car. It is all variable. So that second nature feeling of just hopping in the car and turning the key and driving with no more effort or thought than simply walking down the sidewalk is history. There is something fundamentally wrong with having a steering wheel and the wheels on a car out of synch and variably so.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Toyota has been selling millions of poor-handling vehicles long-before they offered EPS, but the fix isn't for anything but the wandering problem, I thought, as tom said.
  • pekelvrpekelvr Posts: 61
    Sorry Biff but youre wrong even if you bring your car to the dealer they will not install the new computer box aka module. in fact an alignment does not fix it because the alignment is off whack due to the EPS not working properly. I have the fix, it worked because the computer sends the signal to the EPS to correct the steering so what you feel in the steering is a symptom of an even bigger problem. When I got my car repaired with new accelerator pedal, mats and the EPS computer module they did the alignment and the specs showed every tire was doing practically it own thing. When you go to the dealer and tell them to check the alignment they will do it sure, but Spikegrl is right, they wont do anything more, when my 1st alignment was done I asked them to note my issue with my car and they wrote in the comment "Toyota is aware of an issue concerning the alignment of the vehicle and will either post a recall or notify the dealerships when they have "a fix" No where did they say they would call me, no where did it say NHTSA will tell me. I have to say it loud sorry YOU ARE WRONG!!! MISALIGNMENT IS A SYMPTOM OF THE CAR'S EPS MODULE AND THE BOXES NEED REPLACING!! DONT BELIEVE ME CALL A DEALERSHIP! AND YESTERDAY i POSTED MY INFORMATION BUT THE FORUM MODERATORS WOULDNT LET IT STAY THERE OR OTHERWISE YOU WOULD HAVE BEEN ABLE TO CALL ME DIRECTLY....THEY SAID I COULDNT POST NAMES OR PHONE NUMBERS BUT SHE DIDNT SAY I COULDNT POST A URL. ITS WWW.WAKETECH.EDU AND YOU CAN CHECK THE INFO WITH BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION GRADUATING PERSONELL
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