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Camry 2011 transmission problem

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  • I wish you lots of luck and don't get discouraged..After I cancelled my deal on the basis of this forum, and told the sales person to go to this website, instead their Service Mgr said I was not correct and they had never heard of such a problem..

    Okay, been down this road before and GM repurchased my 1998 Olds Intrigue w/26k miles, a check for the full purchase price less $600..This was done w/o a lawyer, no yelling or screaming..Guess what I handed the check to the dealership's
    Gm Mgr and walked out with a new 1999 Olds Intrigue and later traded it on a 2002 Intrigue.. Owned 53 cars in my long life, so I have a little knowledge of dealerships and the auto industry..Spent 33 yrs selling parts to the auto guys and their major suppliers, however never ask for any supplier discounts in purchasing cars..Had a hobby of buying and selling boats, got burned once on a new twin engined 26 ft hi-performance, took 3 yrs to resolve, profitable outcome, the factory picked the boat up 4 times for repairs and the last time they removed the engines which had only 33 hrs of running time total and installed them in a new hull..Outcome was great, I sold the boat without ever running it again for a nice profit..

    So, keep after the people where you bought the car for factories love to stonewall, hoping one loses interest or trades the problem away..

    Myself I am out of the car-buying mood, I really didn't want to write out a check again, and I really can't think of a good reason to buy any foreign name..or GM and not Chrysler..I will take the 2002 Camry XLE in for an oil change next week, same dealer, and the service dept will try to replace filters, belts or whatever comes to their mind...and of course my answer is No..
  • I realize this thread/discussion is for the 2011 Camry, but since we're talking about transmissions and the coastdown fuel cut technique, I have a question about the 2011 Corolla transmission. This is supposedly new for the 2011 Corolla as it is recently refreshed. This description is cut and pasted right from Toyota's official site:

    "The 1.8-liter engine is paired with a five-speed manual transmission or a four-speed automatic Electronically Controlled Transmission (ECT) on the base Corolla, while the LE model features the four-speed automatic standard. The four-speed automatic uses a torque converter with flex lockup for increased fuel efficiency, as well as uphill/downhill shift control".

    Even though Toyota is still using a four-speed, will this "torque converter with flex lockup" produce the hesitation-like feel similar to the current Toyota 6-speed auto. transmissions? Also, I don't understand how this is going to improve fuel ecomomy as the EPA ratings are the same for 2011 as they were for the 2010 Corollas with automatic transmission. Thank you for your help, you seem to know a lot about this technology!
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    The re-acceleration hesitation design "flaw" has now spread throughout the asian and US automotive industry. The fuel cut technique, nor "dithering", continuous up/down shifting to get the most optimal gear ratio for a give road condition, will not be as noticeable on a 4(6) speed automatic.
  • Do the current 6-speed automatic transmissions have a design flaw, or are they made to perform as is, with the hesitation? I haven't driven any other automobile brand besides Toyota with the 6-speed auto. I have the 2010 Avalon and drove the 2011 Camry as a rental. I've had my Avalon for one year now and still am trying to get accustomed to its transmission while city driving. I wish I was aware prior to making this large purchase!
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    The only one of the three symptoms/problems that I would consider a design flaw would be the (mostly unpredictable) 1-2 second re-acceleration downshift delay.

    The coastdown fuel cut technique is discomforting at first but easily and quickly adjusted to.

    I haven't driven a new car with the "shiftiness" long enough to know if I would adapt and it would become virtually un-noticeable like happened with the fuel cut technique. The little bit I have driven one seemed bothersome and I kept trying to find a way to alleviate it, using cruise control abated the effect somewhat but it was still too noticeable IMMHO.
  • I have the same problem with my 2011 SE the noise is so hard to pinpoint but I feel for the price I paid for the car I should't have to hear it. I notice it when I hit uneven road or if I' pulling into or backing out my driveway Im going so slow I'm not even on the gas.
  • I have the same problem on my 2011 SE Its just enough to be anoying Im in NJ and the colder weather seems to be making it more noticeable.
    Doug
    vikinggone@gmail.com
  • sjm10sjm10 Posts: 1
    I kow a bit of time has passed by, but was wondering how you made out with the 2011 Camry and the dealer ?
  • delbardelbar Posts: 32
    the dealership had the car for two days and according to them they cannot recreate my issues. therefore they state there is nothing wrong with the car and what i am experiencing is normal !! the problem has gotten somewhat better but is still noticeable, in particular the WHINY noise the car makes when accelerating. at this point I dont know what to do
    I think Toyota is hoping we all believe their b.s. that it is "normal" or it needs to be "broken in" or "it is how you drive the car" etc etc. -
    I have never owned a car with this transmission issue nor have i had a car with this WHINY noise - additionally I have never had a car that has to be WARMED up for five minutes before the idle is normal. Again, I think Toyota is hoping we either trade them or live with it. I now have a little over 2000 miles on mine and feel STUCK after paying for this car. I have gone to other dealerships for trade in value on it and of course I will lose a lot of cash if I trade it in, and then again have no idea what I would trade for since most cars (after muc researching) have their own set of issues.
    In other words I am in a quandry over this. Anyone out there have any ideas what we can do about it ?? Toyota headquarters gives the same responses as well. Also, in doing research I have read that this issue has plagued many since the 2006 came out. My old one was a 2005 and I had never had even one minute of issues with that car !! Sure do miss my 2005
    Sorry to ramble on but I am sick of spending most of my free time researching this issue - I had even taken pages of internet material to the service dept. all of which was ignored or excuses made for it
  • My experience is the same as yours. Toyota's stock response is that it is normal. The 2005's and 2006's were the best Camry. I owned one and am sorry I no longer have it. This model has had a host of troubles ever since it came out for MY 2007.

    I also have a 2011 Hyundai Sonata, and it too has issues. But my experience with Hyundai has been very different from Toyota. Hyundai actually seems to want to fix the car, and I never get the "It's normal" routine. The different dealer response makes it lot easier to deal with the problems, much less frustrating as they acknowledge you have a problem. I have been to many Toyota dealers over the year and it's always the same response, so I assume it comes from corporate. I like Toyotas but have little respect for the corporation's policies and practices.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    "..jerks constantly..slowing down..." SOP. Coastdown Cut Technique used to extend FE.

    "..warmed up.." SOP. Just bringing the catalyst back up to its ~800F operational temperature, Fed. emissions requirement. Why ide, just...drive.
  • delbardelbar Posts: 32
    because if i dont let it warm up the rpms stay high and the car will drive itself at about 7 to 10 mph and it is annoying
  • delbardelbar Posts: 32
    also - can you explain why the car makes a whiny noise when driving it
    sounds like a "sick computer"
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    Mine may well be the same way I just don't have occassion to start out driving much below20-25MPH.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    Have you pulled the radio fuses to ascertion the sound isn't coming from there..."

    Modern day cars are making LOTs of use of PWM (Pulse Width Moduation) for circuit control, HVCA blower speed control, etc.

    A ground somewhere not fully tightened and you end up with a high frequency whine.
  • delbardelbar Posts: 32
    no have not done that, and would not do that myself
    also, it is when the radio is not on if that matters at all but will note your comments and talk to the dealership about the PWM but it seems to occur when you are between 5 mph and 40 mph and it comes from the front driver side of the car
  • delbardelbar Posts: 32
    thanks for your input
  • purupuru Posts: 11
    Delbar,
    I am having the exact the same problems that you have described. I got a 2011 Camry LE in Oct and it has about 2000 miles on it currently.

    I have major issues with transmission. I can clearly feel the gear changing and the car like pause a little bit, especially at low speed. At times, it almost feels like my car is going to stall when I release my foot from the accelerator.

    Have been to a couple of dealers and they act like "dumb asses". Their attitude , even before they see the car is "its a new car, it cannot have such problems"..what jerks.

    Like you, I too have spend too much time researching this issue and it is heading no where...Infact I have been kicking myself all these months on buying this model ( My first choice was Accord).

    What is the trade in value like, if you don't mind telling me coz I have been considering this option too.

    As far as ideas goes to deal with this, file a complaint with NHTSA.
    You obviously don't feel safe driving this one.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    I think you're going to find that almsot all new cars share you compaints.
  • delbardelbar Posts: 32
    i went to one dealership and was given a 15K trade in value and 17K at another
    considering I paid 22,582 for this one - I guess I am stuck for a while
    have you filed a complaint with the NHTSA? I will do so as well
    thanks
  • delbardelbar Posts: 32
    unreal - isn't it ? never had a minutes problems with any car I have ever owned, just this one
  • purupuru Posts: 11
    Yup, I hear you. I really don't know what to tell you, its a terrible feeling isn't it ?
    I am going to file a complaint with NHTSA pretty soon.

    In last 3 years I have driven a lot of new cars, since I do a lot of consulting work in different states,I rent cars almost every week.
    I have never seen this kind of an issue with any of the cars...infact I rented a Camry SE 2011 couple of weeks back and it was fine, that is why i feel all the more bad.
    Its high time Toyota starts taking these complaints seriously..common guys be professional, take ownership of the issues and fix it.
  • delbardelbar Posts: 32
    I agree and I have said from the get go that Toyota just needs to admit the issue, fix it and move on!!! Funny you should say the SE did not have the problem because during one of my many trips to the dealership one of the sale people suggested I trade my LE for the SE so I am thinking they all know of the issue but their hands are tied as well !! who the hell knows at this point
    anyway let me know when you file complaint I will follow suit.
    thanks
  • I own a 2010 Avalon and also share the 6-speed auto. transmission issue. It is the most annoying thing to live with. At low speeds, when foot is released from accelerator, car feels like it will stall immediately. I miss the old technology (smooth, coasting transmissions) so very much. Never once drove any car like this before. Like everyone else with Toyota's 6-speed automatics, we are unhappy owners stuck with this frustration. Almost feel trapped and scammed by purchasing such an automobile that is so annoying to drive. A recall is 100% needed on this issue.
  • rg1986rg1986 Posts: 1
    I have been having the same issue. I have a 2011 Camry SE, I have to tell you it's the most annoying thing to go through. I've taken the car to the service center, spoke with several managers and all I get is a "Are you sure ?" Or "Did you hit/run over something?" I've called corporate, you name it, I've done it. My car only has 2,000k and has been with me for 3 months now. As for what to do next ? I have no idea but I'll say this much I will not stay with the car.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    "...I will not stay with the car.."

    Outside of switching to a manual transmission you're not very likely to find an improvement, not a modern day one anyway.

    All new cars with automatics have and use the coastdown fuel cut technique to extend FE, which is what you are likely experiencing. Since FE is involved no recall can be of help. The technique actually goes back to ~'01, but with the old 3-4 speed transaxles wasn't nearly as noticeable (bothersome??) as with the newer 6(10) speed transaxles.
  • typesixtypesix Posts: 314
    I can tell you that it's just as noticeable with the 4 spd auto tranny on my 2004 Highlander which has the same 2.4 engine as the Camry, that along with the torque converter lockup in place till about 20-25 mph.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    Right after I bought our new '01 RX300 F/awd I definitely noticed the "awkward" coastdown fuel cut "lurches" but soon forgot about them and now have to take special notice to "feel" them.
  • purupuru Posts: 11
    WWest,
    Can you please elaborate on the fuel cut technique to extend fuel efficiency ?

    Here's what I experience with my new Camry.
    As soon as I take my foot off the gas pedal, I feel the car will stall. I experience a kind of resistance where the car will not move smoothly till I give it more gas. This happens may be 6 out of 10 times, which is all the more bothersome.

    I have changed my driving style a little bit...I NEVER take foot off the gas pedal unless I have to apply breaks. Even when the car doesn't need gas, I still keep my feet on the accelerator without applying pressure.
    I don't know whether this is a right way of doing it, but it has helped me to overcome the stalling issue t some extent.

    Is this how the "drive by wire" technology is suppose to function ?
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    It used to be, with automatic transmissions, that when you lifted your foot from the gas pedal and the car was still in motion, "coastdown" mode, the engine was prevented from stalling via, primarily, feeding it just enough gas to keep it running well into the idle range. The early torque converter's often did not provide enough "back-torque", compression braking, to keep the engine turning fast enough not to stall out.

    That has now changed with the advent of more "robust", heavier duty, torque converter lockup clutches. Nowadays the engine/transaxle controlling ECU can engage the lockup clutch, eliminating the torque converter "slippage", and then sequentually downshift the transaxle as roadspeed declines. That serves to keep the engine turning over at or above idle. So when fuel feed is restored the engine simply "restarts". Once roadspeed declines enough, too much, the lockup clutch is disengaged, fuel feed is restored, and in some instances the transaxle is even upshifted. That's most typically when you get that forward "lurch" seat of the pants feeling.

    So yes, you now have more effective engine compression braking during coastdown periods. But for FWD vehicles not so much as to really threaten directional control loss due to tire slip/skid in most instances. For FWD and F/awd vehicles the coastdown fuel cut technique shift pattern, "downshift" pattern, becomes a bit more aggressive if the driver applies the brakes during the coastdown fuel cut technique period of use.

    The driver's use of the brakes "implies" knowledge that the roadbed traction is sufficient to support the more aggressive engine braking downshift pattern.

    With all these variables it's easy to see why one only notices the effect 6 out of ten times.

    So go ahead and save gas by fully lifting the pressure on the gas pedal and trust that the computer will prevent the engine from fully stalling....it will.
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