Question about 2002 Toyota Prius

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2002 Toyota Prius needs new transmission

My 2002 Prius has 94,395 miles on it & dealer tells me it needs a new transmission for $5,000 with 1 year guarantee. They say it's not a common problem. Other transmission garages say transmissions should last longer than 94,000 miles. Toyota is offerring little support- although I own two Prius cars and have been a long time customer of Toyota, and have always had my cars serviced by the dealerships.I am worried that if I invest to fix the car, what next major problem is going to occur? Any advice???

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  • jpowers611 Feb 04, 2009

    I can't find any transmission mechanic who is willing to work on a hybrid. The quoted time to install the transmission from Toyota is 10 hours. Supposedly, Toyota does not sell the parts so I am assuming there aren't rebuilt transmissions available. Where would i go to find a low-milage transmission?

  • diane_breen Mar 05, 2009

    My 2002, 124,000 miler has a transmission / differential bearing ? issue - and it caused the inverter to short out - I also got a $5000 estimate for that, and close to $4000 for the inverter -

    I am hoping Toyota will pay for the inverter - clearly a design problem, and I found a couple people with the same problem on a blog; one was a 2001, don't know about the other. They said the inverter has an 8 year / 96,000 mile warranty, so if you decide to fix the transmission, do it quickly ! I'm waiting for a local transmission shop come up with an estimate.

  • Anonymous Mar 25, 2014

    Trans slipping in reverse. Is this a common problem or a way to solve it without having to rebuild or replace tranny?



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Looking at the age of the vehicle - I would not invest $5000 in it.

Look in your local business pages for second-hand parts dealers, and get a quote for small garages to do the work of replacing it.

Chances are you will find a low-milage transmission for $250, and pay around $200 to have it installed - so for $450 you're good to go again.
If this was a younger vehicle, then yes I would go through dealerships to keep the logbook perfect; But at this age it's only 3 years off it's designed lifetime, and 10 year old vehicles are very low priced.

Posted on Feb 04, 2009

  • Richard Perkins
    Richard Perkins Feb 04, 2009


    I'm sorry I don't know your location - or I would be able to help you locate one.

    10 hours sounds a bit long.

    I would start by telephoning local second hand parts dealers - or look on Ebay for anyone breaking a Prius willing to ship the transmission to you. This is not as costly as you might think. If you find a local garage able to do a straight swap, have the parts delivered to them directly. You must ensure that the donor vehicle is the same engine size. I've found getting the service manual on CD was money well spent to identify similar parts used across the range, and find what is exactly fitted on your vehicle - and what other model it will also be found on.

    Best of luck - should still come in under a quarter of what was quoted.



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