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We just purchased a 2001 Rav4 with the 5 speed manual tranny and 60K on the odo last Sunday. I noticed on the way home, and on subsequent drives on the freeway or highway, that while in 5th gear if I accelerate or let off the gas the shifter moves. When accelarating it would slide back just a bit, when I let off the gas it would pull forward just a bit.

To make matters worse, my wife was driving it today and going up a hill in 5th it just popped out of gear. It did this on her way home again too. She picked me up from work in downtown Seattle and I was driving home. Went over a small bump in 5th and again out it popped, got back into 5th and accelerated a bit and again out it popped on flat road.

Has anyone else ever had this problem or heard of this kind of problem. We bought the extended warranty from the deal we bought it from, it is scheduled to go back to the dealer for service on Monday morning and the warranty will cover the service. I just want to know if this is a normal problem and if there are other things I should be looking out for or have the service department check while it is in on Monday.

Other than this issue, I think it is a pretty cool car and moves along great. Looking forward to driving it more after they fix the tranny.
 

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My shifter jumps around a little, but it has never popped out of gear. Your problem might just be caused by worn bushings in the transmission. I'd like to hear more about it because I hope it's not something I get to look forward too...
 
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Yeah, some vehicles will have the shifter move around, my Civic does the same thing and I know that one of my motor mounts moves around prolly a little more than it should...

So certainly, as Jeff mentions, have them check the mounts, engine and tranny, as well as the shift linkage...no doubt, the problem is in there somewhere.

Bogatyr
 
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Thanks for the tips guys. Normally the shifter moving wouldn't bother me too much, mechanical linkages do move and it is just the way things go. What bothers me is that only 5th gear moves and when it does it is a good 1" or more of movement.

I would have thought the movement would be in all gears, but Monday the dealer will look into it and let me know. The part that bothers me is that the dealer said they did a 128-point 'safety' inspection prior to putting it on the lot. I would think that on a manual transmission you would drive-test all gears to make sure it is in good condition. Oh well, don't think I will go back to that Toyota dealer after Monday. There are other Toyota dealers locally that can perform the sevice after this...
 
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Well, just got off the phone with the dealership that is looking into the problem. What was described to me as the problem is that the 5th gear syncro and ring gears are "warn" This comes from the team service manager, he told me the technician stated they are damaged. Not sure who is telling the truth here, but the next question that comes to mind is what did they do in their 128-point inspection to completely miss this problem.

Well, off to call the dealership again and try to get more answers out of them...
 

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Honestly, most 100-something point inspections are really no more than just a bunch of visual inspections and not even a real road test. They just throw the car up on a lift and look around with a light, and then take a spin around the parking lot.

Toyota's 160-point inspection that is part of the certified used vehicle program is not as comprehensive as you think it would be. Maybe it is fairly comprehensive, but I think it overlooks a few things in the interest of efficiency.

http://www.toyota.com/html/tcuv/inspection.html

When I bought my Rav, it was a Toyota certified used vehicle with the 160-point inpsection and 100K mile powertrain warranty. When I got the Rav the alignment was off a little, the rear brakes squealed, and none of the TSB's had been done. Over the weeks following the purchase, I took it back to the dealer a couple times to have those issues fixed. Of course it only had 7000 miles on it and it still had 93000 miles of warranty left so those issues did not concern me that much. All the parts of my transmission are covered under warranty, except the clutch.
 
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Fortunately we bought the extended warranty so it would have only cost us $100 to have it fixed. Monday night the tech told us that the warranty would take over a week because the warranty company wanted to check the tranny for abuse. He then told us that they would perform a "Good faith warranty" from Toyota which would cost me the deductible of $100.

After explaining how we discovered the problem and when we found the problem the tech said that he didn't know why they missed it but this should have been caught on the test drive. This started a fight with the stealership to get it replaced with any cost to us. My thought is that if they are telling they should have caught it before it went on the lot then why should I pay for the repair. If it had been 1400 miles prior to this it would have been covered by Toyota anyway.

Got a call this morning that they are taking care of everything, including a few things the salesman told us would be taken care of and weren't. The best part is that I owe them nothing. My only concern is what happens when this needs to be replaced in another 60K miles... Guess we will cross that bridge when it comes.

By the way, for those interested, the tech estimated the repair job to be around $1500 parts and labor. I am thinking that it will be closer to $2000, but we should see come Friday when they complete the job.
 
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Wow -- only $2000? We just had the exact same problem with our '96 RAV4 (popping out of 5th) and the dealer wants $4800 to fix it, which includes a new clutch although the old one still works fine. This car only has 85K on it, and we previously had the serious oil loss problem right after the warranty was over, which has been talked about here before.
Looks to me like this car is a lemon. What was the dealers final price?
 

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$4800 U.S. dollars? If so, damn. Could just buy a whole other '96 RAV4 for that much. That's some shady shop you got there. Did they happen to introduce you to their new car salesmen while you were there?
 

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Now you know why we call it the "stealership".

Dealerships like to replace things even if they could just be fixed, because they have a huge markup on parts and can charge more labor if they replace more parts.

The only reason I go back to my specific Toyota dealer every once in a while is because my Rav is still under warranty, and my dealer isn't that bad actually.

Find a reputable indepedent import/Toyota shop in your area to do any of the work you need; you may pay a little more for some things, but overall it's better work and costs less in the long run.
 

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hseaver said:
Wow -- only $2000? We just had the exact same problem with our '96 RAV4 (popping out of 5th) and the dealer wants $4800 to fix it, which includes a new clutch although the old one still works fine. This car only has 85K on it, and we previously had the serious oil loss problem right after the warranty was over, which has been talked about here before.
Looks to me like this car is a lemon. What was the dealers final price?
To replace all affected parts it should be around $1500. Not all parts absolutely have to be replaced but you might be doing it agian sooner if you oly replace the most worn parts. This proble isn't unique to the Rav4, it happens to lots of 5 speeds that have a lot of highway miles. Mine went at 176,000km. I have no plan to fix it since it was not particularly useful anyway.
 
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