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Lexus Cars / sudden acceleration

United States, California Review updated:
100% 2
Contact information:
Toyota Corp
you can hear the recordings here

My wife was driving her 2007 Lexus IS250 when it began to accelerate and the brakes would not work. This is her account of what happened.

“It was about 4:45 during rush hour on a Friday evening, I was driving on the highway in the center lane, traffic was very thick and I needed to get into the right lane because my exit was about a mile up. I put on my turn signal to get over but the car in the right lane did not slow down so I could not easily get over so I pushed the gas a little to accelerate and I began to get over, when I did this the pedal started to move away from my foot and accelerating without me, I hit the brake, which was like pressing a brick it did not budge, so I swerved back into the center lane because the car in the right lane in front of me was much closer than the one in the center. When I swerved it caused the car in the left lane to swerve almost off the road. At this point I had absolutely no control over the car it was continuing to accelerate and I had no brakes, the dashboard brake light was on as if I had pulled the emergency brake (which I had not). The car in front of me is getting closer and closer and I am sure I am going to slam into it because I am boxed in by other traffic. I got about a car and a half away from it when my brakes finally kicked in and I was able to decelerate, my legs were shaking so uncontrollably, I could barely push the gas pedal to pull off the road. It was the scariest thing I have ever been through, I had absolutely no control over the car.”

I immediately called Lexus and spoke with a technician, I described everything that had happened to my wife and he said, “I have a 2007 IS 250 same as you and mine does the same thing.” He said he has had his looked at 10 times by the service dept and they can’t figure out what the problem is. At this point I just can’t believe what I’m hearing and I started to really get upset thinking that Lexus knows about this problem and I just almost lost my wife the Mother of my three kids to a defect that Lexus is aware of. This is a known problem with over 432 complaints and no one has contacted me or anyone else about the possibility of being trapped in a car while it accelerates down the highway with no brakes, you would think that human life would be priority with any company.

The GM told me they would have someone pick up my car and leave me a loaner car to drive, the tech that I spoke to on the phone with the same vehicle and same problem as my car showed up at my house, left me a loaner car and drove my 2007 Lexus IS 250 away. About 10 minutes after he left I received a phone call from him, he said in a shaky voice, “I just wanted to tell you that I just had to pull off the highway and that was the scariest moment of my life” He said he hit 65 MPH and the car did the same thing to him as it did to my wife, He said “I have never seen anything like this” I could tell he was really upset about what just happened, he said” I’m not driving this car I’m going to have it towed to the shop and I will call you next week and let you know what we find out.

you can hear the recordings here


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A  31st of Aug, 2009 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
This really upsets me. I was a previous Lexus owner (2002 IS300) I never had this problem. My girlfriend has a 2001 IS, but my concern is the loaner car they give her when she takes her car in for service. Someone needs to get to the bottom of the this ASAP. I am very disappointed with the way Lexus/Toyota has handled this problem.
D  9th of Oct, 2009 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
I own a 09 ISF and this never happened to me. If this happened again you have 3 options, shift to netural and break, or shift to netural and then hold start/stop buttom for 3sec to shut off engine and break, or go to sport manual and downshift all the way down to first and then start breaking between first and second gear, the car gears are electronic controlled so pushing gear to park or reverse as last option will not do anything, it is like being in neutal this i believe is to prevent blowing up the tranny. Be safe. Hopefully it is really b/c of the floormats for everyone's sake.
N  9th of Oct, 2009 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
Oh my gosh, I wouldn't take that car back even if they somehow found the problem. I'd probably have a hard time getting in a car period.

I really hope they got something worked out for yourself and your wife ... do you have a follow up story?
N  9th of Apr, 2011 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
does your wifes car VIN number start with a J?
A  5th of Sep, 2013 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
I work as an estimator for a paint and body shop and I'm handling a claim which involves a 2008 Lexus is250. According to the customer, as she was leaving her friends house immediately after she puts the car in reverse, it accelerated across two lanes of traffic into someones living room. She states that she pressed the brakes multiple times but the vehicle only accelerated more. Scared for her and her childrens life all they could do was scream. She is blessed no one got hurt. This vehicle is under investigation. I am very interested and concerned in the outcome, not only for the customer but for my wife as well, who just got a 2006 is250.

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