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Camry 2011 transmission problem



  • purupuru Posts: 11
    Thank you ! You seem to know a lot about the engineering of cars.
    From your previous posts, you have mentioned about "Auto Braking" during coast-down, what is that ?

    I have also observed that with this Camry, I can clearly feel the gear changing and the car like pause a little bit, especially at low speed.
    I don't know whether it has anything to do with the new 6 speed auto transmission or is it just the cold weather.
    Is this very common pattern that people are observing/ complaining about ?
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    Without looking backwards my guess would that "auto-braking" refers to the more aggressive coastdown fuel cut technique that activates once YOU use the brakes.

    And yes, the "lurch" from downshifting is much more noticeable as you reach lower speeds. Shifting, up or down, is much more noticeable, slightly more discomforting, with the new 6(10) speed transmission than was the old 3-4 speed transaxles.
  • delbardelbar Posts: 32
    it is not the cold weather - trust me - I live in florida and have this issue daily !!
    is there a car on the market that does not have these issues !!!!???
  • jl1688jl1688 Posts: 2
    I got a 2011 Camry SE V4 less then 2 weeks of usage with approximately 400 mileage. When the car is parked and when I start to drive it again, once the first gear disengages there's a slight clicking noise to it and it was better when the car warm up but still hear the clicking nois. I went back to the dealer "Roseville Toyota" the tech test drive it and he said that is standard on the Camry SE. he print out the info about it that last modify on 12-08-10 and they knew about it but I got my car 5 weeks later and the sales didn't let me know the noise and I went back to the sales team and they test other cars and only SE V4 has the noice and V6 didn't and they ask me to pick a diff car. I go for the V6 but they ask me to pay $4500 more because the care cost more, I agree to gv $2000 more and they are not able to it for me and I talk to the "General Sales Manager" and he kick me out of his office. if you want to buy a Toyota, buy it at other dealer, don't go to "Roseville Toyota". they don't tell you the truth about the car and they just want to make the sales.
  • Slight clicking noise that you're hearing is most likely ABS self test that's done automatically when you start driving your car after it was parked and it is perfectly normal.
  • jl1688jl1688 Posts: 2
    since you know a lot of info about the Camry transmission. now my car has about 600 miles and I think the clicking noise is getting louder. do you have any suggestion what can I do since dealer not to fix it for me?
  • I'm trying to tell you this is that most likely not a transmission noise and there is nothing to fix.
  • delbardelbar Posts: 32 is a website that may be helpful to us all

    also, I have been shopping around for a different car, and am thinking of trading in this camry for a Ford Escape or a Honda CR-V
    anyone have any input as to these having the same issues with the tranny
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    2012 Ford Escape is to have a completely new restyled body. Escape hybrid uses a CVT (PSD) so not likely to have tranny problems.

    On the other hand ANY newer(***) automatic transmission is likely to have the same "problems" as the Camry.

    A) ~2000, Abolition of the ATF line pressure accumulator and constant pressure relief valve/spring.

    B) Adoption of the FE coastdown fuel cut technique.

    C) More robust lockup cutch and 6(10) speed transmissions.
  • bj02176bj02176 Posts: 115
    You better hold off on that Escape, I just got rid of my 2010. The transmission seemed odd, it would slam back and forth violently trying to find the right gear when the gas pedal was floored.

    It had a transmisiion recall, they said it was fixed, not!

    Rear drum brakes made a clicking sound, electric steering squeeked in the summer time.

    Noises from the front while braking on a right hand turn

    Do a search on leaking and transmission problems.

    Maybe I just had a lemon.
  • For those who can't stand the 2011 Camry... THANK YOU.

    Your "issues" have allowed me to purchase a Camry for thousands less than I expected.

    Yes the system makes noises the first time it reaches 9mph.

    Yes the transmission constantly shifts

    Yes the valve train is noisy at low engine speeds

    Every one of the complaints here are perfectly valid.

    This is our fourth Camry and with each one the technology has improved and we have to accept some changes with it. Fuel injection was a big change. Hey, remember the first time you had ABS and didn't modulate the brake pedal any more? Lots of changes over the years and the 2011 has more in this one car than all the rest combined.

    This time the Camry requires we drive normally so it can learn our habit. If we kept changing to adapt to the way the car drives and the car keeps changing to adapt to the way we drive .........Well, lets just say it's the automotive equivalent of a dog chasing it's tail.

    With Vehicle Skid Control, Electric Steering, Variable Intake and Exhaust timing, Stop Assist, Six Speed Transmissions, Sensors that know your weight (variable air-bag system)............. Heck, it's so tech'd out that the ECU functions as a black box so the dealer knows if you've been abusing the car. There are more sensors on this thing than an airplane (not kidding.)

    So anyway........
    For all those that hate the 2011 Camry, my wife and I thank you. With the beat down you've given the Camry we were able to buy one for WAY less than we expected.

    We LOVE it and don't find any of it's "PROBLEMS" more than the typical adjustment required with any of our other Camrys. Every day it's getting smoother and smoother and quieter and quieter. Our old Camry got 35mpg on the Highway. I've heard that this one will get that or better so I'm really looking forward to the ten years of ownership.

  • purupuru Posts: 11
    If you are shopping for a new car, you should try Nissan Altima or Maxima.

    Thanks for sharing the toyotacomplaint link, I have an appointment with the dealership sometime next week, following which I am going to file a complaint with NHTSA.
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 11,077
    edited February 2011
    We've seen more complaints about Nissan vehicles in the past year than just about any manufacturer, I believe. Transmission, in particular, seems to be a big issue. There is NO perfect car, but I definitely suggest checking out complaints in these forums before shopping - some defects are either minor, or not at all widespread, or just stuff you could personally live with. Others... not so much.


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  • purupuru Posts: 11
    I don't know what you are trying to prove here.

    Instead of helping others who are going through the frustrations/helplessness with their new car, you are just making fun of all those who are suffering.

    Its great that you don't find any problems with your new car, happy for you.
    We are sorry that we didn't have enuf posts. Another 50-60 postings on this would have helped reduced your price by another few thousands..rite ??

    You probably don't understand the misery of the people who have put their hard earned money in a new car, just to find out that the car has tons of problems and that they are now stuck !
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    I was speaking more specifically about the Escape hybrid.
  • petras2petras2 Posts: 104
    I don't think kbetts1 was making fun of anyone..he is trying to make the point that there have been changes and improvements in car safety, fuel economy, etc.. some of these changes come with differences in drivability or new noises they haven't experienced in their previous many cases these things are not defects..I've noticed these differences in my 2010 camry, mainly the transmission lag during coasting..also the clicking noise during initial acceleration,(abs self-test btw)'s not that big of a deal to me and I was able to adjust my driving style..
  • kbetts1kbetts1 Posts: 36
    edited February 2011
    I don't know what "problems" you are experiencing but I said from what I've been reading in this thread that the complaints were valid. The Camry does those things, but they aren't "PROBLEMS."
    Most likely your new 2011 Camry does not have "TONS OF PROBLEMS." The computer monitors your car. It performs diagnostics. It tells you when you have a problem. No lights, no problems.

    The more new technology designed to save a life the more they have issues people have trying to adapt to it.

    Take anti-lock brakes for example. For a LONG time wouldn't put their full force on the brake pedal because the pedal started pulsing as the ABS kept the wheels from locking up sending the car into a skid. The car companies spent millions trying to educate drivers how to use the brakes.

    What do people do? They STILL refuse to step hard on the brake pedal. So now the Camry has brake assist to add force. It also has stability control system, and electronic brake force distribution which are unnecessary if the driver is skilled.


    Out of compassion I did a search for those with misbehaved transmissions...If your transmission is still giving you fits then you can try to make it re-learn to shift right by doing this...

    Toyota U660E service manual on initializing the transmission
    Perform the following procedures while strictly
    observing all traffic laws and speed limits.
    (a) From a standstill, achieve highest possible speed
    with the accelerator pedal opened 15% or less.
    Keep the accelerator pedal angle steady while
    driving the vehicle.
    (b) Repeat the previous step until shift shock no longer
    (c) From a standstill, achieve highest possible speed
    with the accelerator pedal opened 25% or more.
    Keep the accelerator pedal angle steady while
    driving the vehicle.
    (d) Repeat the previous step until shift shock no longer

    If the above doesn't work, try hitting it in the nose with a rolled up newspaper.

    Seriously, I don't know if it works or not because my engine and transmission are learning to behave themselves just fine.
  • delbardelbar Posts: 32
    first i want to thank all for posting with your experiences and advice,
    i am at the point of total confusion, not knowing which new car to trade for or to just keep the crappy camry and put a sign in the back window PLEASE EXCUSE MY DRIVING BUT AFTER ALL IT IS A NEWER CAMRY ! or TOYOTA SUCKS etc etc
    also, the posts that state we need to learn how to drive the newer technology
    1. I bought a Toyota Camry based on my experience with the 2005, I absolutely LOVED that car and never had a minutes problem with it ( if not for my accident I would still be driving it )
    2. I have never had to learn to drive a car - I have been driving for 40 years
    3. If new technology means a jerky tranny and a car that never drives the same twice then I am all for OLD TECHNOLOGY - you know put key in ignition, turn key, push pedal and go !
    no jerking, no whining noises from under the hood, smooth acceleration etc etc

    I am just beside myself at this point as to what to do ! It is a chore to even drive to and from work ! I am considering taking the car to an independent transmission specialist to have an evaluation done on it.
    Big SIGH !!!!!
  • delbardelbar Posts: 32
    please post again and let us know how you make out
    maybe just maybe one day "they" will admit they have an issue and do something to straighten it out
    big pipe dream I know !
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    You are wrong on two points.

    The automotive manufacturers waited far too long before even trying to educate the public on ABS, its use and purpose. In the meantime every IDIOT salesman and in the system, along with every KNOW-IT-ALL, was telling customers that ABS purpose was to help them stop quicker, and/or in a shorter distance.


    Have you EVER seen, even today, outside the newer owners manuals, any effort by the manufacturers to educate customers on how to use and the REAL purpose of ABS...?

    ABS takes LONGER to stop in most cases.

    The initialization procedure is only appropriate for use if/when the battery has been disconnected and the previously "learned" parameters are lost.
  • kbetts1kbetts1 Posts: 36
    edited February 2011
    The ABS was just an example of technology/education breakdown.

    The ABS is used to prevent wheel lock up which will allow the driver to continue to steer to avoid objects while braking, not for shorter stops. On some low friction surfaces (ice, sand), ABS will stop shorter than all but the most skilled driver without ABS even when staying in a straight line.

    I'm a systems specialist. Part of my job dealing with aerospace systems was to educate users on system parameters and keep operator input inside those parameters. Operator induced oscillation (Pilot induced oscillation in aircraft) is a major source of system failure.
    This transmission issue is a perfect example of poor education. I've been reading about it ever since the problem first appeared in 2007 with the new Camry. Now with the six speed it's even more pronounced.

    If the transmission is shifting as poorly as these guys say, it needs to be initialized again. I'd also check the fluid level just to make sure it's not an issue. Last step would be to put it on the diagnostic computer and see if any codes were set. If that was all good then I know the problem was not the car, it was me.

    On another forum a guy said his car ran great after he got it back from the mechanic who did an extended test drive (70 miles) Then as he drove it, it started messing up again. Can there be any question that the driver is the problem a significant amount of the time?
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    "....If the transmission is shifting as poorly..."

    What is actually happening is that the transmission is shifting so often it is discomforting to most drivers, including this one. The most modern transmissions are shifting so often because they are programmed to always be in the most optimal gear ratios for current driving conditions. With simple 3 or 4 speed transmission the range of each gear was so wide 4th was satisfactory for a wide range of road conditions.

    But now with these new 6(10) speed transmissions the most optimal gear ratio is changing constantly due to even the slightest change in driving/road conditions.

    Where these CVT's then the shifting would not be noticeable but with standard gear sets it leaves the driver with a bit of unease.

    " started messing up again..."

    It is highly likely the mechanic cleared the learned memory and 70 miles would NOT be enough for a complete parametric "relearn". As I said before it might take 200-2000 miles for a complete relearn.

    So the owner got the car back before it had completed all of the re-initialization process.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    When I first purchased the '01 F/awd the coastdown fuel "lurching" was quite discomforting, maybe more like disconcerting. But within a few months I was so adapted to it I had to focus my mind on the "feel" of I did not take notice.

    I assume the same thing might happen with all the "shiftiness" of these new 6(10) speed transmissions. I've only driven one, rental, for a week or so. So maybe. Meantime when I start looking to purchase gain I'll give special priority to a CVT....or PSD.
  • djm2djm2 Posts: 712
    Hi All:

    I am presently in the market for a new 2012 vehicle! ----- At the present time, I own a 2010 Chevrolet LTZ 4 cylinder Malibu, and a 2007 Toyota XLE V6 Camry. -------- (Both vehicles were purchased new, and are serviced by the selling dealer every 2,500 miles, and both vehicles have a 6 speed automatic transmission.) ----- If you review the history of the 2007 Camry you will find owners who have had all kinds of problems with this vehicle. ---- I presently have 63,000 + miles on this vehicle, and I have NEVER experience any of the problems that have been presented on these boards, so as such, I will be looking at a 2012 Camry, or a 2012 Avalon. ---------- (There is a possibility that if I run across a one year old Camry or Avalon, at a dealer, with full warranties I will go in that direction.)

    I service & drive my vehicles in a unique fashion!

    1.) I always warm up the engine during the winter months before starting out on my trip. ---- (My choice! ----- I know it is not recommended, ----- but I make my own decisions in my life! ---- On cold mornings I need to get the frost off the windows. ---)

    2.) For the first few blocks I operate the 6 speed trans in the manual mode. ----- I set the selector to #3. --- I do not allow the trans to shift into 4th gear. --- I continue to operate the vehicle in this fashion until I feel the trans is up to operating temperature. ---- When I enter the highway, I place the selector into automatic drive position. (I have NEVER had an operational problem with the transmission. Some Toyota owners have complained about a "rpm flare up on the 3 to 4 and the 4 to 3 shift when the vehicle is driven on a cold start!)

    3.) I change the engine oil and filter every 2,500 miles at the dealer, and I use a dealer recommended oil additive BG / MOA at every oil and filter change. --- This additive controls the "sludge problem!" ---- (The engine does not use any oil between oil and filter changes. I drive extensively on the highway on long over the road trips at 65mph for hours!)

    4.) The Camry has Michelin tires, and I easily get 30mpg on long trips. (I have also gotten as high as 34+ mpg on long highway trips at 60mph! ----My 2010 4 cylinder Malibu only get 27mpg on the highway. ----- Both vehicles have a 6 speed automatic trans.)

    5.) The Camry seating is very comfortable, and the performance of the power train is outstanding. --------( I would love to go "head to head" with a Ford Mustang with this V6 Camry coming out of a toll booth on the Graden State Parkway. ---- I know that the Mustang will eventually beat the Camry "if" it has the BIG ENGINE, --- but from a dead stop, ---- the Camry would hold its own to 60mph, (depending on the skill of the Mustang driver, and the engine in the Mustang.)

    I would purchase a 2012 V6 Camry or Avalon in a heart beat! ----- I see them as a high quality product, and I have an OUTSTANDING dealer to keep the vehicle running great.

    Best regards. --------------- Dwayne :shades: ;) :)
  • Buy another Camry and then we can look forward to your praises of its outstanding features..The 4 cyl Malibu is not much of a car, and the 4 banger Camry is much superior..Never owned one, however I have a 2002 XLE in the garage which is a trouble -free to date..

    I was going to buy a 2011 Camry SE, 4 banger at a huge discount, however I stumbled onto the tranny glitches which changed my mind. The SE series is the only Camry I would own due to its upgraded suspension goodies which enhances the handling eliminating the mushy handling of all Camrys including the Avalon..

    My current rides are a supercharged 2006 Pontiac and a 2010 Mustang GT which are not the greatest for fit and finish, however fun items to drive..Living in Fla the roads are great, which tends to up the speeds on the xway so handling is important and triple-digits are quite common..

    The V-6 Camry is pricey, but handles the a/c better at high speeds...Good luck on your Chevy, for it will only get it.. Yep, I am a Big3 fan having owned 51 Big3 cars, but most of the economy cars out from the Big3 in the past have failed in MPG scene and worse in the durability factor..
  • WWEST,
    There are a lot of unknowns so maybe you're right. But my personal experience says different and that the 'learning' is very fast.

    We live three miles down a winding hilly road with a 25mph speed limit (not quite a roller coaster road, but close). At first our car was clunky and the transmission was often in the wrong gear lugging down the motor. The shifts were very loud and could be felt. After the first 100 miles on the car the transmission has always been in the right gear. No downshifting, no gear hunting, no hard shifts. Shifts on the highway are now almost seamless and I'm sure after a few more months of ownership the differences between our 2003 and our new 2011 will be forgotten.

    All I can tell you is that I've experience all the "PROBLEMS" everyone else has and they were gone after the first week (120 miles). The engine is getting quieter but it's still noisier than our old 2.4L. This new 2.5 has 15 more horsepower and is more than a second faster accelerating to 60mph so a little noise under throttle is a good trade off. Just cruising down the road, this 2011 is MUCH quieter than our old Camry. I think it might be quieter than our 2008 Avalon who's tires are getting noisy.

    This is our fourth Camry. What a great car. Sorry for those who are struggling but my wife and I think this car is a fantastic improvement. We are thrilled. We don't know of any other car in this class that's better for us and we've driven a lot of them.
  • delbardelbar Posts: 32
    how exactly do you check the fluid levels - there is no dip stick in the new camry
    I also had taken my car to the dealership and after being told there were no issues, was told there was a tsb so they reset the codes, car ran ok for an hour then back to the same old issue again
    this car has 2400 miles on it and drives like crap
  • kbetts1kbetts1 Posts: 36
    edited February 2011
    The dealer has a procedure to check the fluid level. Insist on it if you are still having trouble. It's a huge PIA requiring multiple steps so they won't do it unless you tactfully ask for it. I have no clue how to 'tactfully' do anything so I'd just find the procedure online and threaten that if they don't do it, I'd do it myself.

    Insist the following things get checked!!!!

    Check the battery health. A weak battery or a battery with a shorted cell will not allow the system to operate correctly. This can be done quickly by the dealer at little cost.

    If that is good, then:
    Check the ground straps from engine/transmission to chassis and chassis to neg battery. A poor ground will prevent the electronics from operating correctly

    If that is good, then;
    Check the transmission fluid level. Low fluid level will cause multiple problems including hard shift.

    If that is good then;
    Perform diagnostic performance tests. The dealer can interrogate the computer and run diagnostic checks on the transmission to insure full operation.

    I can't think of anything else that would cause the issue except a driver/car interface problem.

    I can tell you are frustrated with your car. When you get to a certain point it's really tough to recapture an objective attitude. If you're not a car guy it's even harder because you rely on others to correct any issues.

    This transmission "problem" can't always be solved by the dealer. Even if the transmission is perfect, it requires the driver to drive normally even if it shifts too hard or too often. Hope things improve for you soon.
  • delbardelbar Posts: 32
    thank you
    i will call the dealer today and see if i can schedule an appt to have all of that done
    hope it gets better because I am out of ideas for trade in
    every car i read about has some issue or another
    thanks again and yeah i hope things get better too
  • purupuru Posts: 11
    Thank you !! I can see that you are genuinely trying to help people who are having problems.
    Sorry for my out burst earlier , I was pissed off with the problems with this camry model. As you have said " When you get to a certain point it's really tough to recapture an objective attitude " and this is what happens to me too :)
    I am not a car guy and never paid much attention to the engineering and how stuff works. However after I bought this car and started experiencing these problems with transmission , I started reading and writing stuff on these forums.
    Like delbar, I too have spend hours researching on these issues and so far I have got no where.
    But, I always have a positive attitude and I hope the car just gets better !!
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