Got Toyota FJ Cruiser 2010 Automatic, 4x4 full stock (no warranty, I live in Central Europe). I have strange transmission issues. I had already spent 2,5 years of life and about 2500$ just to diagnose the problem, but so far nothing. The problems started when I've got only 3000 km on the odometer.

So the problem(s) are:

  • Shifting between all gears occurs with jerks. It occurs when gears up-shift or down-shift. But phenomenon is inconsistent. One time you can accelerate, and get rough shifting between all gears to achieve 5th gear (or down-shifts while slowing down). Next time when you accelerate you get rough shifting only between 1-2, 2-3 and 4-5 gears or all together (or any other combination). Next time there maybe no problems at all: absolutely smooth up-shifting. Any combination is possible.

  • When you depress gas pedal while moving at any speed and then press it again (even very gently and slowly): there will be jerk forward. Driving car in traffic jam became nearly impossible for me.

  • Hard engine braking. It occurs even when road goes downhill. When I shift to neutral car immediately goes faster. So the problem is not in brakes.

  • Hard kick down. For example when I drive at 5th gear (70 mph) and do kick down, transmission is trying to go through all gears while down-shifting. I mean that there is no shifting from 5th to 3nd when kick down occurs (normally). It tries to shift 5-4-3.

  • When my car stops on steep incline it easily rolls back. Even when compared with other FJs.

Cold or hot weather, cold or hot engine and transmission, sunny or snowy — all the same, problem is present.

What I had already done to diagnose:

  • Checked transmission oil level many times — normal.
  • Full computer diagnostics — no error codes, nothing.
  • Reset ECM (ECU) memory many times — nothing.
  • Checked all sensors in transmission using Techstream program — nothing.
  • Changed transmission oil and filter on 20000 km (all OEM) — nothing. Oil was very clean.
  • Checked transmission oil pressure — nothing.
  • Checked engine gasoline system pressure.
  • Checked brakes and ABS system many times. Changed brake fluid. Checked parking brake — nothing.
  • Changed spark plugs (OEM).
  • Cleared MAF sensor.
  • Cleared injectors.
  • Cleared and checked throttle.
  • Checked and greased Cardan shaft.
  • Upgraded ECM software — all the problems gone! But in 25 minutes all happened again and still present.
  • Bought and installed new ECM — and again only 25 minutes of happiness.


  • Welcome to Mechanics.SE. I formatted the post, and while it is in moderation, I have couple questions. Why is there choke on EFI-equipped vehicle? Is it something else you had meant? How do you perform kick-down on an automatic transmission? Is there a specific kick-down function on this vehicle? Why would you want to kick-down from 5th to 2nd at 70 mph? BTW, is it mph or km/h? Is engine braking really that bad? You sure you do not have lowered gear engaged (which is helpful to slow the car down when going downhill)? – theUg Jan 15 '13 at 2:48
  • 1. I am sorry for mistake. I mean throttle, not choke. 2. Nothing special about kick down. When my car was OK there was no hard kick down, it was almost impossible to feel gears downshifting. I checked other FJ's 2010 - everything is OK, different from mine now. 2. If to speak about 70 miles/hour - its just an example. Same hard downshifting while kick down occurs in any other speeds. 3. No. No lower gear engaging while going downhill. Other FJ don't do that. – user2611 Jan 15 '13 at 9:37
  • No ideas huh...(((( – user2611 Jan 19 '13 at 22:53

The problem was in the SLT and SL1 pressure solenoids.

Anyway, thanks for attention.

  • Can you provide more information about this so that someone else who gets in the same situation would have some detailed explanation? – theUg Mar 7 '13 at 6:00
  • Just replaced solenoids 35290-34010 (SLT) and 35210-50010 (SL1). Nothing else to say. – user2611 Mar 7 '13 at 22:36
  • But was there a reason for them to go bad? Is it a common malfunction (bad design), or does it have to do with poor maintenance or special operating conditions? Again, what exactly do they do? – theUg Mar 8 '13 at 0:55
  • SLT solenoid is well nown for it's problem with jammig, even in low mileage. SL1 is usually not a problem, but I change it be sure and safety. – user2611 Mar 8 '13 at 10:15

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