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Brand new Prado 2022 with intermittent engine/transmission stutter

El Pulpo Salsero

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Hi, back in February this year I spent $80k on a brand new Toyota Prado GXL from Sunsine Toyota in the Sunshine Coast. This is the first time I've owned a Toyota and whilst I'm generally happy with the vehicle I am beginning to get concerned with a subtle stutter that happens at random times when driving the vehicle. I haven't been able to figure out if it is an engine-related stutter or a transmission stutter, but it appears to happen when the the engine is revving at about 1500rpm and under a bit of load (so for example when starting to climb up a slightly inclined road). It isn't something that can be heard (so it doesn't appear to be engine misfire) but you can feel the stutter, which makes me think it could be a transmission issue.

I haven't discussed this with the Toyota dealer yet because, since this happens randomly, I'm thinking it will be hard to convince their technicians that there may be an issue with the car if I take them out for a test drive and the stutter doesn't happen. So I thought I'd post my experience on this forum to see if anyone else has experienced something similar, and if they have, what the outcome has been? Keen to hear from you.

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Hi Tony, I understand your concern and frustration at having spent a lot of money and having to experience little niggles with it. 

It's really difficult to say what it could be, unless someone here has actually experienced the same condition. 

I tend to think it could be transmission related and not in a mechanical sense because everything is run by computers these days and when the software has a brain fart it can translate into a mechanical one. 

I would definitely bring it to the attention of the dealership and perhaps take it back under a warranty claim. It's possible it may need a software update or something insignificant as that. 
The old chestnut that seems to be the flavour of the day, is that people are saying that "I took it to Toyota and they could find nothing wrong". Don't accept it. If it's not driving as it should then they are responsible to offer a solution and fix it under the terms of the warranty agreement and consumer law.

Hopefully, it turns out to be nothing major. It's brand new, so I cannot imagine anything serious. Minor hiccups can occur with the high complicated electrical systems these modern cars have. 
I'd hate to be a car technician these days to be honest. Issues like this can take you down a rabbit hole if you're not careful.

Let us know how you go.

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Thanks for responding Tony. I have literally just sent a couple of emails making Toyota aware of this. It is an interesting one and I guess I will be about to experience what Toyota's customer service is like. As I mentioned in my post, it's the first time I've owned a Toyota, and after doing extensive research on options available, I specifically decided to purchase a Toyota based on drivetrain reliability and durability. I have owned other four-wheel-drive vehicles and SUVs and my main comparison (in terms of reliability and durability) is that I have been running more affordable Hyundais and Kias for the last 15 years (covering about 600,000kms) without missing a beat! And on top of that their customer service has been exceptional.

So whilst I am willing to endure the reality that some Toyota vehicles will inevitably have teething technical issues that will need to be resolved along the way, it will all come down to how Toyota deals with this issue. If they prove to be empathetic and willing to cooperate to try and find a solution then I'll be happy enough with that. If they adopt a stubborn, uncooperative approach then I guess I'll have a bit of an issue to deal with. For now I'll give them the benefit of the doubt.  

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  • 8 months later...

Hi Tony & Tony?

My 2021 Landcruiser Prado Kakadu has the exact same symptoms. The vehicle has only done 2600km from new and only 500km since it was last serviced by Oldmac Toyota at Cleveland. Strangely it has only been  noticeable since the last service, which is very coincidental? Further and in regard to the last service I checked under the bonnet looking for a possible loose connection or something not securely fastened. My only finding was that the oil filler cap had been tightened/loosend by force, enough force to damage the top finger turning tab (burred from what appears to be some sort of tool. The oil filler cap was so tight I  couldn't budge it using both hands. I eventually got it off by using a rag and shifting spanner and found the seal on the under side of the cap was bone dry. I lubed the seal with a drop of oil and it screwed and unscrewed perfectly. Who are these people servicing your $100k motor vehicle? Have they not been trained? I then checked the tyre pressures because the stutter was very unusual and there may have been a remote correlation. Well to my surprise the tyre pressures were out the window, what the? it had only recently been serviced? Pressures were front left 42psi, front right 39psi, rear left 41psi and rear right 41psi. Toyota's recommended pressures are 29psi both front and rear. What is really happening to my prized $100k vehicle in this service department? These findings raise so may questions.

So as you would expect I'm now extremely reluctant to have any of these guys open the door let alone lift the bonnet to start tampering with any sensors and electronics.

My gut feeling is possibly a faulty sensor or something fuel related as it appears to be more noticeable when you gently accelerate through a roundabout or corner. Sadly it's not an obvious enough problem to activate any warning lights.

Really not sure where to go to from here?

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  • 2 months later...

This recent YouTube video by The Car Nut provides an explanation for transmission shudder. It that case for that series of vehicles the underlying cause was the Toyota software and the solution involved a number of revisions to the software.

Interesting that the 1st revision did not resolve the issue.

Looks like there are advantages to having your new Toyota vehicle serviced by the Dealership for the initial 3-5 years. 

Those people that previously asked a question on the Forum then disappeared now have a potential answer.

As for the regular members and viewers of this Forum, here is something more for your knowledge bank.


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  • 6 months later...

I have the same issue. Mine shudders when slowing down as well but just as its about to stop, at times feels like its going stall similar to a manual when forgetting to push in the clutch. I also have an intermittent knock from rear end when taking off slowly (approx 1500rpm each time), feels like the torque convert is still locked in then as load increases it unlocks and sends the knock down to the rear axle. Its going to toyota this friday for a check up.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I have recently purchased a 2023 Prado GXL, it has similar symptoms  between 1400 and 1600 rpm the exhaust noise becomes a much louder droning noise.

This is in 6th gear I assume .

It is fine at lower or higher rpm .

When accelerating up a hill or slight incline from 1500 rpm the droning sound becomes more obvious until the transmission drops down and revs increase then it disappears.

I took it back to the dealer at 500km who said they had not heard of it before. 

They said it was noticeable, so they took another Prado for a drive, and it did the same thing.

It wouldn't be so noticeable, but this rev range is what I find I use the most for my driving. 

I used the trans in S mode just lately so vehicle wouldn't change into top gear problem was gone so Iam guessing the higher gearing has something to do with it 


anyone else had this problem and had it rectified?




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