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Toyota Tacoma Transmission Problems

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  • I drove around last night and today after the dealership reprogrammed the computer on my Tacoma. I called the dealership and reported that the reprogramming had significantly improved the transmission problem. There is still a little hesitation when I slow below 10 mph and then accelerate. There is also still a little holding back, or "tugging" feeling when I am coasting down a hill or coming to a stop. But, I feel that the problem is about 80% better, We are not at 100% yet, but is is noticeably better. Hopefully, Toyota will monitor this site and "fine tune" after reading our input. I will check my mileage to make sure there is not a negative affect there. I ask that all of you take the time to write after you get your Taco reprogrammed and let the rest of us know how satisfied you are with the "fix". Thanks.
  • 09taco09taco Posts: 33
    Thank you very much for the update on this!! I'm going 1st thing to the toyota dealer in the morning and see what they say... I'll keep everyone posted on what they tell me.
  • tennesseeman: I would not worry too much about the hold back on coasting because my 08 tacoma double cab does that but has never done any of the other crazy stuff that has been reported on the 09's. I think it helps make the brakes last longer.
  • bad7qbad7q Posts: 1
    Thank you for posting the TSB information to the forum. I took my 09 Tacoma to the dealer this morning to have the 09-10 Tacoma TSB installed. The customer service rep insisted I take a technician for a test drive to duplicate the problem before they would install the update. The problem was duplicated during the test drive and the customer service rep authorized the software update. The update took about 30 minutes and as you indicated, there was a significant improvement. I immediately noticed the difference when driving my normal daily route. Those turns along the route where I would normally experience the "problem" or traffic conditions restricting my speed to under 20 mph were now shifting "better". There were instances where the old "problem" did occur. However, in those instances, the reving up of the engine was not as "pronounced" as it was in the recent past. Overall, the shifing is better. However, this was day one......................
  • Glad to hear that the software helped. Your explanation of your "fixed" Taco sounds just like how mine performs now. Mine is not completely fixed, but it is much better. Although, I would not buy one, or recommend one that operates like this, it is getting closer. The service manager told me that it might get better after the computer 'learns how i drive". Well, I have heard that one before and I have no faith in that strategy. But, it is still much improved. Hopefully, others will be getting theirs fixed soon and write about their "fix".
  • Had my 2009 tacoma at the dealer yesterday and they have downloaded the TSB update for this shifiting problem and it has improved dramatically.
  • Well, after seeing the new format that Edmunds has employed here and the few posts that seem to be confirming a definite improvement in the shifting I'll definitely contact my Toyota dealer and confirm this service bulletin. I'm starting to get a warm fuzzy feeling that this format can help. Thank you all and keep up the vigil.
  • 09taco09taco Posts: 33
    Hi Thanks for sharing this wonderful info. on the new software downloads for the tacomas. I really hope this helps out. My truck goes into the dealer monday AM
    I was looking to trade this in if Toyota repair this.
    Thank you, and I'll be sure to post my findings after they hopefully correct my truck.
  • I am going to pick my 2010 Tacoma up this afternoon from the dealer. It had 974 miles on it and has shifted horrible since day one. They are telling me the TSB states check fluid level. They are saying mine was 2 quarts LOW. I will let you know if it is any better. They also said it DID NOT need a re-program
  • Took my 2009 Tacoma in to dealer today to have the new TSB computer download and immediately noticed a difference driving back home, about 8 miles. The truck coasted much smoother when slowing down and though I only had six turns to make, the transmission did not hesitate at all. I did notice a slightly hard shift with a bit of a jolt once at about 45 mph, but I will wait to see if it happens again. I am hopeful this will make the transmission operate much better. I will keep everyone posted.
  • Also make sure they check your trans fluid, They found my fluid down 2 qts. Just for other extra information for others My DAD just bought a 2010 Ford Tarus SHO and it has the drive by wire , same as 2009 tacoma and it shifts funny as weel but there manual indicates it will smooth out after its learning process, But boy what a car!!!!
  • I had a Ford SHO for 11 years and what a sweet motor it had. My wifes new RX350 also has the drive by wire system in which I believe is responsible for the current concerns that Lexus is having. However, at this time it is working quite well. I believe we'll be seeing more and problems with the drive by system controlled by computers. We're the guinea pigs.
  • Glad to see you folks are finally getting some relief, I had my doubts. My 2003 Tundra V8 TRD had the notorious bad fuel filler neck and all I got was the run-around, because while I only had 12K miles on it, it was out of warranty time-wise. They wanted to charge me $140 to look at it when you could clearly see the bad weld seam. I finally bought the part on the Internet for $85 and fixed it myself. This was also a TSB but to me it should have been a recall because it threw a code and the CEL was lit, not able to pass the emission test. All they did was jerk me around and send me in circles between 2 dealers and the factory. An acknowledged defect is a defect no matter what. 2 months earlier and they would have fixed it.

    Drive by wire was created for emission purposes, stops us from creating a sudden rich mixture situation that could pollute. My Tundra has it and it is definitely not smooth if you slow down without completely stopping and then accelerate again. It pauses for a millisecond then rockets you forward at a rate greater than intended. The implementation of drive by wire clearly varies by manufacturer as my 2006 Subaru Forester also has it, and while I don't like it compared to my previous Foresters with a real throttle wire, it is much more refined and smoother than my truck.

    Toyota could learn a lot from Subaru on how to treat customers, and I have doubts on whether I would buy another Toyota, despite the fact that I really like my Tundra.

    Good luck to all!
  • I have been watching this thread for awile and was getting pretty upset with the transmission issue on my 09 Tacoma V6 4x4 which has 15000 miles on it. Thats how I ended up here. I saw the post mentioning the TSB update and called the dealer, they acted unaware of any issues. They said bring it in and made me jump through all the hoops. They ended up flashing the ECM. So far I am impressed. If it would have been like this when I bought it, I would have never started hating it. Thanks for the updates and best of luck.
  • I thought I was imagining things with my dual cab 4x4. It just never felt right from day one. The high revs between first and second and the lurching. Took it to a local dealer (not the one I bought it from) and took it for a ride with their transmission guy, he said all the new electronics make it shift that way, just the way it is, not!! Just found this site thankfully and emailed the site to the service manager at the dealer I bought it from. He said bring it in and they would see what they could do. Like they do not know about the issues already? So I will keep you posted as to my results. I have been a Ford guy all my life and finally gave up on them because of poor reliability and you guessed it transmission problems. Looks like I am jinxed.
  • Glad to see so many people benefiting from reading and sharing their experiences. Its a shame that Toyota is so poor at communicating with their customers. its pretty that their customers (us) want to communicate. In fact, every time I see their newest TV commercials asking potential customers to "ask someone who owns one (Toyota) I want to get angry. I want someone to ask me. I will tell them about how I got more information and help from a group of dedicated and nice strangers on a web-site than I ever got from Toyota. For any late-comers I am repeating that the "fix" for the automatic transmission of the 09 Tacoma is IAW TSB 0373-09. Call your local Toyota dealership and carry your Taco in and get the software patch installed that will 'mostly' solve your problem. Then, log-in and tell the rest of us how it worked for you.
  • I have been reading and have the same problems with the transmission high revs and searching for the right gear. I also read that there could be a "fix" for this and to call the consumer number. I called it, and the rep I talked to sounded floored that this was a problem and told me that he had not heard of this problem until MY call. He said he would note this and asked if I would like a claim number, to which I said "absolutely", and that they would keep me informed to any future information.
    When I took my new truck (that I have only a month) back to the dealership with this problem, they told me it was "normal" and they have had other people call or come in about it and that some of the cars do it as well, and to help with the problem, I should just down shift out of Drive to 4th gear. I'm sorry, I thought I just traded in my standard transmission for an automatic transmission! If anyone has any information to help, it would be greatly appreciated!
  • No you are not jinxed, take your truck to the dealer and tell them to look up the IAW TSB 0373-09 for the truck. They will tell you they need to do all kinds of diagnosis and test drives to replicate the problem and make sure it's not some other issue, but just stick to your guns and tell them about this forum and the results a few of us have gotten. They won't admit the problem but they are aware of it. It fixed mine.
  • Well, here it is 4 days later and I've still not heard from the dealer about this new TSB. Apparently, not everyone at Toyota is aware of this yet. My guess is that Toyota is trying to figure out what residual effect this is going to have on possibly other fly/drive systems it has employed elsewhere. There policy of claiming ignorance of the problem is amazing. I'll give them another day or two to respond to me. When and if this TSB is performed on my Taco I will post the results. Hang in there guys.
  • I have been told that the shifting problem was normal with the new "drive by wire" BS. As soon as that IAW TSB 0373-09 was posted I called the dealer, they said that it was correct but had never heard of the problem. I had to set up a service appt. so they could diagnose the actual problem and all the formal BS. The tech who drove it could not duplicate the problem, I was with him. He also said he had never heard of the problem. They said they would need it for a few hours. After a half hour they came back and said I was good to go. They did the TSB. I read in the techs notes that he noticed the problem and recommended the TSB! Anyway don't put it off, they know of the problem. Probably can't admit it, because of the floormat issue. I got that recall notice in the mail yesterday, which I need to bring it in for some safety check. Good luck
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