Expert says Toyotas have gone down in quality

@yotaverse/TikTok Alexandr Blinov/Adobe Stock (Licensed)

‘It’s gone down, the fanboys won’t admit it though’: Expert says Toyotas have gone down in quality. Here’s why

‘Yet it still outlasts every other vehicle…’


Jack Alban


Suppose you’re looking to buy a car that’s going to be reliable, affordable to maintain, and packs a great lifespan. In that case, you’ve probably considered purchasing one of Toyota’s many offerings. Heck, you’ve probably got a Corolla, Camry, or tiny pickup truck in your family that’s been passed around more than the Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants.

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However, there have been murmurs of the Japanese auto manufacturer’s legendary reliability taking a hit in recent years, according to the Yotaverse (@yotaverse) TikTok account. The clip doesn’t hit on any of the chain’s mechanical components, but rather highlights some of the piecework of a Tacoma pickup truck.

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In the clip, the creator points out how several fixtures in the vehicles rattle and shake in ways that are not only unsightly, but could be annoying if one is driving on uneven roads.

The TikToker asks in a caption, “Do you think Toyota’s quality has gone down recently or is it just us?”

Has Toyota gone down in quality?

The TikToker first points out the glovebox, which they push and prod—it rattles. Next up is part of a door armrest. The TikToker shakes it and it shimmies back and forth in place. They point out a cloth tag hanging from one of the seats, pull on it, and let it smack against the seat. The center console is also subjected to scrutiny—the TikTok user lifts it and demonstrates how it bounces from side to side.

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He assesses the exterior of the car as well by prying his fingers into the grill and tugging on it to show how much it wiggles. The creator then presses another part of the door located right beneath the window— it also wiggles, in addition the the plastic cubby “cage” that’s attached to the door.

Several viewers didn’t seem all too concerned with the accusations of poor build quality in the Tacoma. One person remarked, “Bet it still starts on the first crank in 20 years.”

Someone else said Toyota cars were never really renowned for having lush interiors, but rather for their reliability and endurance.

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“The quality is in the drivetrain,” one wrote. “Everyone knows this.”

This was a sentiment echoed by someone else who said, “Toyotas- all the money is spent on the power train. Interior’s always sub par. But cheap to fix if needed. Nothing new!”

One Toyota owner posted their own similar experience in the comments, writing, “I mean, my 06 rav4 does all that, but still has 300k miles , starts n drives with 0 issue.”

Some folks said there is a difference in terms of assembly when comparing the quality of Toyota vehicles that are assembled in America versus those put together in Japan.

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“There is a HUGE difference between Toyota of America and Toyota of Japan,” a user said.

“That’s why you buy a 4Runner made in Japan,” another wrote.

@yotaverse Do you think Toyota’s quality has gone down recently or is it just us? Tap for direct links to our products! ————————————————————————— Proudly based in the USA 🇺🇸 Check out hundreds of parts for your vehicle by clicking the link in our bio! #Repost #fyp #fypシ #foryoupage #yotaverse ♬ original sound – Yotaverse
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MIT Sloan Management Review has written about the perceived dip in Toyota’s quality over the years, highlighting how in 2009, publicized vehicle recalls made headlines leaving folks to call into question the brand’s reputation.

“Toyota announced that it was recalling 3.8 million U.S. vehicles. The recall was triggered by the report of a fiery crash in California, where the accelerator of a Lexus sedan got stuck, resulting in the driver’s death,” the piece read.

Several other media outlets and forums have discussed the possibility of Toyota’s perceived dip in quality. NBC News talked about the manufacturer’s decline in 2010, around the same time as these recalls MIT Sloan referenced. Topspeed said that Toyota’s perceived reliability dip in recent years has more to do with the brand’s embracing of newer, more complicated technologies. The manufacturer’s previous materials in its designs were components designed to be subjected to high levels of constant stress for extended periods of time. But with newer, more complex components, like GPS units, something this redditor lambasted for breaking 6 months after the warranty on it expired, necessitating that they foot the bill for the entire cost of the unit, a comment they made as part of a parent post that called out a new Tundra’s power steering malfunction.

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Jalopnik suggested in a 2023 piece that Toyota’s perceived dip in quality is part of a larger problem in the automotive industry suggesting that car quality, as a whole, has just been getting worse.

Of course, it’s also worth considering that many processes and cars that have been purchased an sold in recent years could’ve been manufactured during COVID supply chain issues, which means there could have been fewer employees were working longer hours in order to produce vehicles despite not having as many quality components.

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The Daily Dot has reached out to Toyota via email and Yotaverse via TikTok comment for further information.

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