Are you currently struggling to find an affordable car that you want? A reporter would like to talk to you about your experience with car shopping; please reach out to [email protected] for more information.

2007 Toyota Camry Transmission Questions



  • jewel2jewel2 Member Posts: 4
    I spoke to them today. They said until Toyota issues another service bulletin there is nothing they can do. However, our Toyota service rep and his supervisor are going to a Toyota meeting in Denver next week and will bring up the transmission problems that they are seeing more and more of lately (not just the Camry, but the Highlander as well). I don't have high hopes, but perhaps something will happen. In the meantime I am to schedule a ride with the service manager to show them what is going on. At least there will be more documentation.

    Thanks for the reply. I'd never heard of "converter lockup" but that describes what's happening perfectly.
  • camryowner1camryowner1 Member Posts: 62
    Problems with flareup/downshifting affect both 4cy. and 6cy. As problems with my 07 Camry LE did not show up right away, I doubt if you will be able to discover problem with just a test drive. However, I would suggest you drive the car to an inclined road, get up to 55-60 mph, set cruise control, then wait and see what happens as you travel up the inclined road. My car displays the problems on any inclined roadway no matter how slight the incline. GOOD LUCK!!!
  • teamtboteamtbo Member Posts: 78
    Hi jewel2, thanks for the post. I have a 2007 v6 and had my transmission replaced due to a 1000 RPM shift flare in April (TC002-07). After 2200 miles, I am experiencing the shift flare again. I have been working with Toyota Corporate and they have told me that there is no other TSBs they can perform either. My case manager asked me if I wanted them to send me arbitration papers.

    After your post, I am beginning to wonder if they are confusing my issue with the hesitation issue that people are experiencing on the 5 speed automatic (4 cycl). I say this because I know there is a newer TSB out there for the shift flare that was released in June but I am hesitant to mention this to them...since THEY are the manufacturer and should be telling ME this information!! Anyway, like you, the service manager wants me to come by and reproduce the issue for him (even though they tell me there isn't anything else they can do). I am hesistant to do this too because, this time around, the shift flare is much less predictable. Anyway, we'll see what happens. I am going to try and video tape it if possible.
  • camryowner1camryowner1 Member Posts: 62
    Hope your service reps are able to get Toyota to do something about the 07 Camry transmission problems that still exist, even after their latest TSB (Aug 2, 2007) was installed. Please post any and all info on this continuing issue.
  • djm2djm2 Member Posts: 712
    Hi all:
    How often does the transmission fluid need to be changed on a 2007 V6 XLE Camry?
    Is there a "fluid pan" on this transmission, and can the "fluid change" be accomplished by dropping the pan, as opposed to using flushing equipment?
    When I had the 2003 Honda Accord, I would have this service done at least once a year, or every 20,000 miles which every came first! I will have about 22,000 miles on this vehicle in January 2008 (It's birthday)!
    Best regards. ---- Dwayne :shades: :confuse: ;):)
  • comuscomus Member Posts: 24
    Update September 7, 2007. Here we go again. After replacing the transmission 10,000. miles ago, (now having 36K on the xle) the same symptoms are back. Traveling at 60 miles per hour, I heard a ding, the red triangle went on with an explanation in it, The VSC error came on, Check Engine came on, The car with skid marks came on, the engine went from 2000 rpm's to 5000 rpm's. These error messages would not go off. The transmission would slip 35-40 MPH. Made an appointment with Carmax for the next day. The next morning, the error light were still on. When I filled up with gas, the lights went out. The transmission computer read out says, transmission problem. Supposedly there is a new software update for the computer. Waiting for answers. This would be my 4th transmission and my second new Camry XLE V6. NOW, WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE?
  • comuscomus Member Posts: 24
    From what I understand, no one touches the transmission fluid. If a dealer is caught changing the transmission fluid in the xle sealed transmission, all warranties are void, and the dealer is fined or denied reimbursment. I am not exactly sure, but there is something very special about this particular transmission. GOOD LUCK, you will need it.
  • teamtboteamtbo Member Posts: 78
    Hi comus, please keep us posted on your situation. I am sorry to hear about the issues you have encountered. I can relate - at least a little. I had my transmission replaced 2200 miles ago (TC002-07) and I am experiencing the shift flare again. The Good/Bad news is, the flare isn't as bad or as reproducible so I am not sure if Toyota will be able to see it for themselves.

    I spoke to Toyota Motor Sales last week. They said there wasn't anything they can do. They asked if I wanted arbitration papwers. However, I know there is a new software update but didn't want to mention it to them because THEY should be the one telling me. I am hoping and praying I can get them to buy this car back because I have a strong suspicion that they have no idea what is causing the shift flare.
  • chuck28chuck28 Member Posts: 259
    Toyota is offering you arbitration papers knowing you don't have enough fixes to win. I went through arbitration and presented a strong case and felt I won until the decision came and said due to state lemon laws meaning amount of fixes is one reason I lost my case. They don't want to do the TSB because if it fails it will count as another fix.
    I know because I'm still fighting with Toyota to fix my car. It's very frustrating when the TSB says it will fix my car but nobody wants to do it.
    Just be aware!
  • chuck28chuck28 Member Posts: 259
    Toyota is offering you arbitration papers knowing you don't have enough fixes to win. I went through arbitration and presented a strong case and felt I won until the decision came and said due to state lemon laws meaning amount of fixes is one reason I lost my case. They don't want to do the TSB because if it fails it will count as another fix.
    I know because I'm still fighting with Toyota to fix my car. It's very frustrating when the TSB says it will fix my car but nobody wants to do it.
    Just be aware!
  • teamtboteamtbo Member Posts: 78
    Chuck, thank you for your reply. I really appreciate it and it is exactly what I feared. I am tempted just to trade in my car and take the $6000 loss rather than have salt added to my wounds by losing the arbitration battle. Do you think it would help my case if Toyota Corporate sent me some documentation that said they have no other fixes for my situation (even though I don't think this is true)?

    Would you mind summarizing (quickly) your situation for us? I know I would really appreciate seeing what you have tried doing, how many times Toyota has tried to fix your car, how arbitration went and what you are trying to do now?
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Member Posts: 25,779
    >TSB because if it fails it will count as another fix.

    This sounds like the dealer and Toyota are acting in collusion to avoid trying to fix your car because it would open them to the required number of efforts at fixing it for the lemon law. Surely that's illegal. Toyota wouldn't do anything like that, I would hope. I would think your local dealer would want to apply all possible fixes hoping to find one that works on your Toyota.

    2014 Malibu 2LT, 2015 Cruze 2LT,

  • joel16joel16 Member Posts: 64
    Hi all. I would like to know if this is a 4cyl or 6cyl Camry with the transmission problems, and transmission replacement. Just want to know what's in store for me and my 4cyl Camry. FYI, after the most recent 4cyl TSB applied to my 2007 4cyl XLE (now 6 weeks ago) I drove quite a bit this past weekend, and still little to no hesitation (except when air con running full tilt) in normal driving, no flare without cruise (up-flat-downhill); however, there is definitely consistent flare when traveling up-grade with cruise control on, and seems like anything over 50mph. I'm no millionaire, but I will take the loss on a trade-in versus constant hardware replacement; I went through this once on a Honda (fuel injectors), and won't do it again.
  • djm2djm2 Member Posts: 712
    Hi comus:
    Am I to understand from your posting, that the fluid is NEVER changed in the V6 XLE Camry automatic transmission for the life of the vehicle? ------- If that is the case, what is considered to be the life of the vehicle, 100,000 miles? Something doesn't sound right with this concept! The automatic transmission fluid gets VERY hot, and over time it will break down! This is a major repair looking for a place to happen! If this is true, I am glad that I purchased a "top of the line" Toyota extended warranty.
    Best regards. ------ Dwayne :shades: :sick: :confuse: ;)
  • mcdawggmcdawgg Member Posts: 1,709
    Check your owner's manual to be sure. That is your best source.
  • teamtboteamtbo Member Posts: 78
    Hi joel, I am speaking about a V6 and the TSB in the subject line is for the V6 as well (TC002-07). I wasn't aware that the 4cyl had flares - only hesitation. Bummer!
  • joe152joe152 Member Posts: 2
    I have a 2007 Camry LE 4 cylinder since april 2007.
    I have been experiencing some problems either with the transmission or the engine. When I start to accelerate sometimes, (usually in low speed) I have a 1-2 seconds that the car does not respond, and suddenly I feel a jolt and the car jumps.I reported this to the dealer and I was told there was not an update for that engine or transmission. The problem seems less after driving for a while. I am disappointed with this vehicle. I had an oil leak at the oil pan, which the dealer fixed after two trips. I'm wondering what's next. This is my third Camry and probably the last. My wife does not like to drive it. She would rather drive our Jeep Grand Cherokee.
  • stlpike07stlpike07 Member Posts: 229
    There is a TSB out for this "issue."

    TSB EG036-07
  • joel16joel16 Member Posts: 64
    Joe, the TSB is for 4cyl automatic transmission; they say the problems don't exist on the manual. Don't let the dealer tell you (a) there is no TSB and (b) it doesn't apply; it applies to ALL 4cylinder 2007. The prblem they will have is tying up a bay and one or two personnel for a FREE update. Also, make sure they hook up an external battery source as the code set for this TSB is large, and will take 1-2 hours to re-program the computer; this could drain your battery during the update. This TSB definitely helps with the hesitation, but does not fix the transmission flare that happens when traveling uphill with cruise control on. Good luck.
  • mcdawggmcdawgg Member Posts: 1,709
    "Joe, the TSB is for 4cyl automatic transmission; they say the problems don't exist on the manual"

    Not true. See post 496 for the actual TSB. It says all 2007s, including automatic AND manual transmission.
  • user777user777 Member Posts: 3,341
    Not true. See post 496 for the actual TSB. It says all 2007s, including automatic AND manual transmission

    To be complete, that's not true either. Evidently, not all 2007s are covered by this TSB (i.e. not the V6 models) just the 4CYL models (MT or AT).
  • joel16joel16 Member Posts: 64
    This is definitely the place to come and find out about Camry's, and in this case, transmission problems!! Yes, the TSB says for all 4 cylinders...I should have been more clear by saying that the dealer told me they wouldn't normally apply it to the manual transmission because the driver has more control over the shifting; they are more concerned about the automatic. I can understand their concern about the automatics, because, as I've said from the beginning, in my mind this is a safety issue primarily because you can't predict when the hesitation will happen. Having now had more experience with the "flare" issue, I think it is also a safety problem; with the cruise on, the car surges ahead to regain/attain the set speed, something a driver wouldn't normally do (same as stomping down on the accelerator). A light tap on the brakes stops this, but you have to pay attention.
  • teamtboteamtbo Member Posts: 78
    I brought my Camry V6 back to the dealer due to the shift flare coming back after the new transmission in April (TC002-07). Thank God I was able to reproduce the new shift flare for them yesterday (since it is pretty intermittent). The field tech let me drive...he saw the shift flare and acknowledged it! I was SOOO relieved. I was fearing he would say, "oh, that is normal." He ended up re-flashing the ECU with the latest software - TSB TC007-07. So far, so good. However, I have read posts where sometimes this new software made it worse. We'll see.
  • chuck28chuck28 Member Posts: 259
    Hello Teamtbo, I'm so glad you were able to get someone to witness the flare. I'm still trying to get somebody to witness mine. It's been so frustrating. I even have video but they don't care.
    Please let us know how the reflashing holds up.
    Thanks, chuck
  • teamtboteamtbo Member Posts: 78
    Hi chuck,

    Yes, I thank God that they were able to witness the shift flare.

    Unfortunately, I spoke to soon. To summarize, we had the tranny replaced (TC002-07) in our 2007 Camry XLE V6 in April due to a 1000 rpm shift flare. Just yesterday, had the ECU re-flashed due to shift flare (TC007-07). Tonight, on our way to a movie, we experienced 2 shift flares - they were pretty signficant (600-800 rpms). The reflash definitely made it worse. So, I guess we are going to head back to the dealership. This next time, will be attempt #3 - even though I am not sure if there are any other TSBs for the shift flare.

    The good thing is we are getting closer to a valid lemon law case! I am ready to dump this car, get a new car and get on with my life. This has taken up way too much of my time. If I didn't have a flexible job, there is no way I could have invested this much time in trying to get Toyota to fix their defective product. I would have been fired!!
  • user777user777 Member Posts: 3,341
    oh boy. i wonder if they are allowed to downgrade your flash... tell us what happens.

    i think people often forget the REAL cost of a problematic vehicle. the time and effort expended is worth real $$$.

    i very much hope the dealership takes care of you, but if all they have to offer is the previous flash - it isn't looking good.
  • joel16joel16 Member Posts: 64
    I was just watching a local "Consumer Alert" broadcast on WCNC here in Charlotte regarding the Camry (2006/2007) and the hesitation problem. Net is that many complaints have been filed, and the Govt (they say) is watching closely. The woman interviewed said she considers this a safety problem, especially with her grand kids in the car. Toyota says it's the car getting used to the way you drive, and designed to smooth out jack rabbit starts, and improve gas mileage. You can read here: html
  • stlpike07stlpike07 Member Posts: 229
    The woman should have let the reporter drive the car.....anyway, if you don't give any car gas its not going to go. Also, I would like to know what car the woman previously drove.
  • joel16joel16 Member Posts: 64
    Good questions, not answered in the report. My personal experience was (a) I had a 2001 Toyota Avalon which I would still be driving if I wasn't hit by an unlicensed/uninsired driver -- illegal as it turns out (b) while the Avalon was being fixed so I could trade it, I rented the previous version Camry with a 4-cylinder; that car convinced me that the Toyota 4-cylinder had plenty of power and snap. As it turns out, this new generation of 4-cylinder + new transmission falls far short of the previous version. The hesitation problem is real; the latest TSB fixes it for the most part. However, as stated previously, the flare problem is still present with the cruise control. Also, as I've said, I like the car, but I think (a) the hesitation and flare are safety problems and (b) Toyota screwed up, similar/same as they did on the engine oil sludge problem (directly related to their engine design). Nothing is perfect, and Toyota proves the point. It will be interesting to see if the 2007 Camry maintains a high resale, or ends up on Consumer Reports "Avoid" list.
  • 1st_toy_owned1st_toy_owned Member Posts: 4
    Just curious, but what is this "oil sludge" I have seen mentioned in other posts? Is it still a problem or has it been fixed with the '07 Camry?
  • chuck28chuck28 Member Posts: 259
    Hello Teamtbo, I thought I was hearing myself talk reading your post. I don't have a flexible job and it's been a huge inconvience to me.
    Don't give up your fight. That's what Toyota wants.
    Keep the word out on how they try to fix your car.
    I wouldn'y recommend for anyone to buy a Camry until Tpyta says they have fixed the problem.
  • meanoldteachermeanoldteacher Member Posts: 2
    Hello Everyone,

    I am one of many regretful owners of a 2007 Toyota Camry LE 4 Cyl. I based my purchase solely on having owned a 2004 Camry LE 4 Cyl., which is a great car. The 2007, on the other hand is the worst piece of junk I've ever owned and I've been sorry I purchased it from the first day. I'll certainly never buy Toyota again and will gladly spread the reasons why to anyone that will listen. The transmission hesitates, the in-town mileage is horrible, and the radio is virtually useless. All of these opinions are in comparison to my 2004, which is responsive, economical, and one of the best cars I've ever owned. I've had the 2007 to the dealer, which of course is a waste of time since they never admit anything is a problem until at least after the warranty is up, and not even then if gagged by corporate. They simply say the vehicle is performing to factory specifications, which I guess must mean that the transmission should hesitate, the in-town mileage should be horrible, and the radio should be virtually useless. They also tell me there are no TSBs regarding the transmission problem and that they've never even heard of this problem before, but obviously they are either lying or are grossly incompetent (or both). So I do intend to unload this turkey ASAP, no doubt taking a loss in the process. But my main problem is that I don't know what to get instead, although I don't think I could do much worse even guessing. I figured that on this web site many others must be in the same boat and might have some recommendations. I want a car that is approximately the same size (the Honda Accord is too small) and the same price, but performs like the Camry used to. Possibly the Nissan Altima or a Hyundai Sonata? Any recommendations would be appreciated.

  • joel16joel16 Member Posts: 64
    Ray, I checked out the new Honda Accord 4 door this weekend. My observations: it is 194+ inches long (longer than the Camry at 189.4). It has two 4-cylinder engines, 177HP and 190HP to choose from if you don't want the 6-cylinder. The back seats fold down, whereas they don't on the higher end Camry's. It has room for a full size spare (the Camry does not). The trunk is SMALLER than a Camry. the dashboard is quite a work of art, no gaps, no really cheap plastic. There is an "interface dial" on the dash that controls some of the main functions and nav system (option - like BWW - I am not sure this is a good thing), but you can use voice control also whic seems to work very well. Overall, the new Accord has body lines that are similar to a BMW, seems to have a lot of room inside, plenty of power (I drove the 190HP 4-cylinder). Unknowns are crash test ratings, and the inevitable problems that pop up with any new models (yes, Honda has problems too - their new CRV had an oil leak between the transmission and engine when first released). I also went over to the dark side and drove a new Ford Taurus, Ford Fusion, and Lincoln Sedan; I have to say, I was impressed with the Taurus. For me personally, the most recent TSB fixed my hesitation problem, and the mileage has been great.
  • joel16joel16 Member Posts: 64
    1st_Toy, a few years ago, Toyota had a problem with oil sludge in some of it's engines. Essentially, the oil would thicken to the point where it interefered, and some said "seized" up the engine. Truth be told, some of the problems were caused by owners who almost never change their oil. However, the real reason was that Toyota's engine design showed narrow oil pathways that were supposed to keep the engine running at higher temps, thereby increasing performance and mileage. It took quite awhile for Toyota to admit to the problem (they kept saying "this is the way the car was designed to operate" or "owners are using the incorrect oil or not changing oil often enough or are using the car in harsh environments")...sounds similar to the hesitation problem excuses, no? Some agency finally forced Toyota to own up to the problem, and offer extended warranty on the engines (100K miles, but only IF the owners could prove they had done regular oil changes at a REPUTABLE service station). Toyota designs and builds some of the most reliable, usable and comfortable cars on the planet, but they are by no means without fault, and make no mistake, they take no prisoners when defending their cars, right or wrong. No corporation gets to the top without leaving a few bodies in it's wake.
  • djm2djm2 Member Posts: 712
    Hi meanoldteacher (Ray):
    I have been following this problem since I purchased a 2007 V6 Camry in January. I understand the frustration with this issue on the part of the owners, and I believe the problem is "real," and it is a "dangerous" operating characteristic of the vehicle. Now having said that, I must also state that my 2007 V6 XLE Camry does not have the issue that is being described on this board. My vehicle now has 16,000 miles, and on a recent road trip I averaged 32 mpg on the highway at 55mph using 87 Getty gasoline. (I do not use my cruise control, as I like to be in control of the vehicle myself.)
    I like the comfort and the ride of the V6 Camry. When I purchsed this vehicle, I also tested a four cylinder version of the Camry. I did not like the way the vehicle handled. It seemed TOO LIGHT on the road. I drove it on city streets, and on the highway doing 50mph. I took the vehicle on the same road course as the V6 Camry, so I had a basis of comparison! (I did not notice the transmission flare on the four cylinder Camry at the time of the test drive!)
    QUESTIONS: ---- Do I believe that the "transmission problem" is real? ---------- YES! ---- Do I believe that Toyota can do something about it for the customers that have the problem? ---- YES! ---Do I believe that Toyota wants to do something about the problem? ----- NO!--- REASON:---- The "fix" for the problem is going to cost a "TON OF MONEY" for Toyota. I will bet that the 2008 Camry DOES NOT have the problem! ---Toyota, (like every other auto manufacturer), will drag their feet as long as possible, in the hope that the problem will go away. They will only take action, when there "bottom line" starts to hurt! This is the "sludge issue" all over again. Toyota claims that they have redesigned their V6 engine so that it does not produce "sludge"! I do not believe that claim, so I have my dealer change my oil and filter every 2,500 miles rather than at 5,000 miles. If my Camry, with an extended Toyota 100,000 mile warrnty, has a "sludge problem" in the future, Toyota will "eat" the cost of repair for this vehicle!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I would not trade in this vehicle and take a loss. Rather, I would go to a magnetic sign company and advertize the operating characteristics of this vehicle. If the dealer states that "the vehicle is operating as designed", that means that the manufacturer is proud of their product, and that you, as the owner, should advertize this unique characteristic to the auto buying public. The following could be an example of that sign:------

    "This new vehicle has a transmission problem
    purchased at XYZ Toyota!
    Ask me about it!"

    If you choose to trade in your vehicle, I would recommend a Chevrolet Impala. But, I do not think that the V6 Impala gives the same fuel mileage on the highway as the V6 Camry. You could also look at the Ford 500 or the Mercury vehicle. I would not consider a Chrysler product. If you think Toyota is bad, you need to "check out" Chrysler. I would not go with the Sonata because of the resale value. If you are going to keep the vehicle for 100,000 miles it might be an option, but there is also the issue of dealerships. In my area of the country, there is only ONE "stand alone Hyundai dealer". Most are part of Chrysler dealers as a second product line. (NEED I SAY MORE!!!!!!!)
    I like my Camry, and I like the way it rides and performs. Prior to purchasing this vehicle, I had a 2003 four cylinder Honda Accord, that I purchsed used from an estate sale. The vehicle came with an extended 100,000 Honda warrany, and that warranty paid out $3,000+ dollars worth of repair prior to trading it for the Camry. So as you can see, not evern Honda is perfect! I did not like the ride of the Honda Accord, and I did not like the seats of the Accord. They were VERY uncomfortable! The engine and transmission were outstanding. I changed the engine oil and filter every 3,000 miles, and I had the trasnmission fluid changed once a year, or every 20,000 miles, which every came first.
    I think Toyota needs to take responsibility for this issue and fix the problem.
    Will I purchase another Toyota? Probably--- NO!--- Do I like the vehicle that I have? ---- YES! ---- Reason: --- I do not want to take a chance on getting a problem vehicle! If Toyota values their "customer base" let them prove this by solving this problem for those who have the problem! Then maybe, I will consider purchasing another Toyota in 2010!
    Best regards. ------ Dwayne :shades: :confuse: ;) :mad: :)
  • kiawahkiawah Member Posts: 3,666

    Printout a copy of the latest TSB for the 4 cylinder, which effects the engine & transmission performance. Hard for the dealer to indicate there isn't a TSB, when you can hand it to them. The TSB has been posted in one of these Camry forums. I think that could go a long way toward addressing your hesitation, and potentially also your mileage. I was getting poor mileage initially, until I had the first TSB ECM performed. When I walked into the dealership with a printout of the first TSB, they hadn't seen it either (it literally had just come out). They took it, looked it up on the computer, and did it very willingly with the oil change that I had booked.

    I haven't had this latest TSB performed yet, but will so on next scheduled oil change. My car has been running great since the first TSB a year ago.

    If you can't find the TSB with a search, let us know.

    Can't speak to whatever radio problem you are having, I haven't experienced or read of any problems. Seems like you are getting shortchanged by the service department, is there another dealership in proximity? You can take it to any Toyota dealership for warranty repairs.

    Have had my LE since they first came out, with 20K miles now (I guess a year and a half now). Other than the cruise control downshifting and hesititation problems which were both fixed with the original TSB, car has been fabulous.
  • joel16joel16 Member Posts: 64
    Hi Kiawah, two questions (1) the flare problem was fixed with the original TSB? this is where the car surges ahead when cruise control engaged...that seems not to be fixed on my 2007, although the hesitation is and (2) are you living on Kiawah?
  • kiawahkiawah Member Posts: 3,666
    1a.) The 'flare' problem is not what you describe. A flare happens when accelerating. As you are in say 2nd gear and your engine RPM's raise to say 4000 rpm, then the transmission would normally shift to 3rd gear and the rpm's would drop from 4000 to let's say 2000. With a transmission 'flare', what happens is the transmission begins to shift from 2nd to 3rd, it appears to go thru a period of time when it is in neutral. The rpm's will spike and instead of going down, will actually go up. Could jump from 4000 to 5000 for a short period of time, and then drop down to 2000. That is what people have described as a flare. A number of owners of the V6-6speed have had this problem, it is not at all typical of the I4-5speed (although 1 or 2 individuals have claimed to have this problem on an I4).

    1b.) I was one of the original owners reporting the cruise control problem, and to explain this need to first explain the I4-5speed. There are obviously 5 gears in the transmission, but there is also a feature which 'locks' the torque converter while in 5th gear, which will drop another approx 300-500 rpm or so when it shifts into lockup mode. This almost makes it appear on the tach that it is a 6speed, but it isn't. In travelling down the interstate at constant speed, you would normally be in 5th gear with lockup. What I found is that in driving via soft foot on the pedal, I could cruise along just fine. The car would drop out of lockup at times to climb a slight grade, and would even downshift to 4th on occasion if necessary. During this period of time the car speed would drop a few mph. Under cruise control however, as the car started to drop mph it would quickly downshift from 5th lockup to say 4th, and sometimes 5th L to 3rd. Car would surge ahead and overshoot the target mph speed, would shift into 5th lockup again. Seemed like the vehicle had to downshift for even the slightest of grades, appeared to be lacking enough power for how high the transmission was geared. I have some torque and hp charts on my carspace, and the rpms at cruise speed with 5lockup were below the power/torque curves of the engine. I believe (not technically substantiated) that the engineers just got the engine too lean, and over geared, in effect actually decreasing the overall performance.

    The original TSB (and the latest supercede's the original), feels like to me to give the engine more horsepower, and gives the transmission different shift points. The car runs sooo much better, it's like night and day. Both the hesitation, as well as the cruise control downshifting problem went away....and my mpg, and performance went up.

    2.) Live/work in Raleigh, have a place at Kiawah.
  • joel16joel16 Member Posts: 64
    Thanks Kiawah. I live and work in Charlotte. Parents have a place in Cary (Containment Area for Relocated Yankees). Kiawah is one of the most beautiful places on the planet!
    Thanks for the explanation on flare. Unfortunately, I still get the cruise problem (happened many times on a recent trip to Raleigh). The car does downshift, and surge ahead, but the RPMs stick over 3000 or more for 3-5 seconds, before dropping back down. Almost like a combination of the flare and cruise problem. Personally, I think this car could use a few more horsepower, and that might help solve the problem. Honda has a 177HP and 190HP 4cyl in their new lineup. I drove both, and the 177 seems a little underpowered, 190 seemed perfect. Of course, and probably obvious, I am not an auto techie, just have owned and driven many cars over the years.
  • kiawahkiawah Member Posts: 3,666
    If you look at the Torque curve (these are the originals prior to TSB's), you see that there is a knee of the curve at just under 2K rpm's. Look at your rpm's next time driving w/ might run better at a higher mph (as long as you don't get a speeding ticket), which is getting your rpm's up in a range where the engine has more torque and runs better. At 1500 rpm, engine looks like it is putting out only about 40hp, at 130 footlbs of torque. The air conditioner compressor and alternator probably suck up 1/2 of that. All my normal driving is less than 3K rpm, which is in the 30-70 hp output range.

    I forget, didn't you get the latest TSB put on? Are you saying you still have a cruise control downshifting problem?

    I4 Torque/HP curves

  • joel16joel16 Member Posts: 64
    Yes, had the latest 4-cylinder TSB installed, hesitation gone (although air con does suck some power from the engine at times) and yes, still have the cruise control problem. I am taking the car in to the dealer next week to get oil and filter change, and will discuss it with dealer at that time. When cruise set at 70 mph, and speed dips below 70, transmission downshifts, and car races to attain speed, sometimes overshooting 70. After speed attained, engine stays at high RPM for 3-5 seconds before dropping down again to 2000+ range (where I'd expect it to be). Happens quite a bit on trip from Charlotte to Raleigh (mostly uphill). A little disoncerting to say the least, and makes me wonder if this behavior is damaging to the engine/transmission.
  • wwestwwest Member Posts: 10,706
    A slight correction...

    With OD gear ratios of ~1:1.7 (engine turning once for each 1.7 turns of the transaxle output "shaft") the engine RPM is down in the low 2000 range when just cruising along at hwy speeds.

    Since torque converters MUST act like a clutch at 800/1000 RPM, low torque coupling, at these low engine RPMs the lockup clutch must be used to bypass the torque converter.

    So modern day vehicles are almost NEVER in OD without the lockup clutch being engaged unless a reasonably high level of engine torque is required, bringing the engine RPM up into the range wherein an unlocked torque converter can operate with efficiency.


    These days a significant improvement in FE is being attained via using the lockup in gear ratios below OD. Eliminating the inefficiencies of the torque converter at times when its torque multiplication factor is of little or no use. Making a 5 speed, 4 speed + OD, transaxles into "six" speed transaxles.

    Now, the "driveability" issue.

    Were you to have an accelerometer in hand at the times your car "downshifts" when it exceeds the cruise control target you might find something unusual.

    Even thought the engine RPM jumps quite noticeably aurally and "visually", the accelerometer indicates a nice smooth transition.

    Say WHAT...??!!

    Your were doing 60MPH in cruise control and now that uphill slope causes the speed to decrease slightly, so more engine TORQUE must be applied.

    So the lockup clutch disengages.

    But in the INSTANTANEOUS case, at the "current" engine RPM, the torque converter is simply not efficient enough to maintain your speed, let alone bring it back up to the "target".

    The engine/transaxle ECU has been made well aware of this fact and therefore it will use DBW to open the throttle slightly, simultaneously with releasing the lockup.

    Why the attention given to this issue??

    With you, "soft-footing" the accelerator pedal, the very same thing, VERY SAME THING, happens. But since YOU are the causative factor in the downshift sequence it simply doesn't get your interest as does having it happen automatically.

    Also, can you really "soft-foot" it just barely enough to keep it in the OD gear ratio but with the lockup disengaged or do you mostly end up in an entirely lower gear ratio.

    The ECU via DBW can....

    While you would have to search for "it", via some hunting, dithering of the gas pedal, the engine/transaxle controlling ECU "KNOWS" just EXACTLY what engine RPM, torque output level, will be needed, without any EXCESS whatsoever, once the lockup is released.


    And by the way the lower HP/torque I4 will be much more subject to this "effect" vs the V6.

    And by the way these matters, issues, effects, have been exacerbated in the past few years by some breakthrough technology. My 2001 RX300 cruises at 65MPH and 2700 RPM. The new RX350 cruises at 2200 RPM at 65 MPH.

    VVT-i? Dual intake plenum?

    Doesn't matter, the fact is that many modern day engines now have a higher torque level in the low RPM ranges than we ever dreamed of just a few years ago. So the OD ratios are getting higher and higher, allowing the engines to operate at even lower RPM levels while just cruising along.

    Lower RPM levels = Lower, LOWER, torque converter coupling efficiency. In the next decade we will begin to see torque converters disappear from the passenger vehicle marketplace.
  • camryowner1camryowner1 Member Posts: 62
    Hi Kiawah, You say your flare-up in rpm and downshifting on any up-hill inclined road(cruise control "on") has been fixed by the latest TSB? I wish I could say the same, but I cannot. Still have the flare-up/numerous downshifting problem. As I also have the 07 Camry LE 4cyl/5spd automatic, I am wondering if my dealer properly installed the latest TSB. Since my hesitation problem was fixed, I am not very anxious to take my car back and let them screw around with it and possibly make matters worse. Let us know if your problems with the flare/downshifting reappear in the future as it has with some others reporting in this forum.
  • kiawahkiawah Member Posts: 3,666

    Just to be clear up my personal situation, as I think you have it a little confused.

    - Back when I bought the car a year and a half ago, I experienced the cruise control downshifting problem, and a slight hesitation. I have never experienced a transmission 'flare' (I have the 4cylinder LE).

    - The original TSB from a year ago, resolved both of the above symptoms that I had. No problems have surfaced since then, and now have over 20K miles. EG056-06

    - I have NOT had the updated TSB performed yet (release Aug 2007), but plan to at the next oil change. EG036-07

    If you have had the latest TSB performed, and have the sticker to prove it (inside your hood), and it has not fixed your problem.....I'd take it back to the dealership and indicate to them your problem. I'd personally ask them to re-install it.
  • camryowner1camryowner1 Member Posts: 62
    Kiawah, Are you stating that your car does "not" display a rapid increase in engine rpm(flare-up) and corresponding downshift on upgraded roads while the cruise control is "on"? Did your car ever perform in this way? Toyota TSB fixed it? Also, does your VIN start with a J or does it start with 4T? The J means it was assembled in Japan, whereas 4T incicates it was assembled in USA.
  • kiawahkiawah Member Posts: 3,666
    My car used to downshift harshly while using cruise control, trying to maintain speed as I've previously written. This was elimated by the first TSB.

    Please do not use the word 'flare' in describing the transmission downshifting. The flare problem is when the V6-6speed transmission is accelerating, and when UP SHIFTING, where it appears to go thru neutral. These are two totally different problems, on two different models. There is a post from probably 6-9 months ago where a poster actually took a video of the transmission flare. If you see it, you'll recognize it is not anything like a normal transmission downshifting. With the cruise control problem, the car is maintaining a steady speed on the interstate, and does not appear to have enough power to handle even the slightest of inclines/upgrades. The cruise control senses it is loosing mph, depresses the accelerator, and downshifts the transmission to accelerate back up to target speed.

    I found the video for an upshifting transmission flare, here it is:
    flare video

    My car Vin is USA w/4T, made in April '06
  • lucky_777lucky_777 Member Posts: 205
    Was this issue resolved with late 2007 and 2008 production Camry?
  • mackabeemackabee Member Posts: 4,709
    You're one big contradiction Dwayne. If you don't have a problem with your car why are you slandering a manufacturer on a public forum? "This new vehicle has a transmission problem
    purchased at XYZ Toyota!
    Ask me about it!"

    There are civilized and diplomatic ways to get things done. You have the Owner's rights and notifications booklet that came with your owner's manuals and advices you how to go about getting satisfaction if you think you might have a :lemon: Use it!
  • mackabeemackabee Member Posts: 4,709
    "With the cruise control problem, the car is maintaining a steady speed on the interstate, and does not appear to have enough power to handle even the slightest of inclines/upgrades. The cruise control senses it is loosing mph, depresses the accelerator, and downshifts the transmission to accelerate back up to target speed."

    This is the way it's supposed to work! I've been driving for over 30 years and all cars with cruise do this. Foreign and domestic. When going up a steep incline the vehicle will slow down. It's just a law of physics. The ECU senses this and downshifts until it gets back to the preset speed. It then upshifts to a higher gear and maintains the preset speed.
  • joel16joel16 Member Posts: 64
    mackabee, you are correct, the car should downshift, and attain speed. You would also see the RPMs go up. However, with this problem, after attaining the set speed, my car shows RPMs between 3K and 4K, and holds this high RPM for 3-5 seconds prior to upshift to a higher gear. After the upshift (which, by the way is not smooth), the RPMs drop to around 2 to 2.5K. So, the car downshifts, surges ahead, and then seems to be in a "suspend" state for what I consider a long time, prior to upshift; it's almost as if it's not connected to the transmission for that period of time. I know this isn't a technical explanation, but it is what I observed. I too have been driving for more than 30 years, with many cars I've owned with cruise control. I never experienced this problem until now. Personally, I think part of the problem is the car is underpowered.
Sign In or Register to comment.