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2004 Toyota Camry - Why did it die?

Manual transmission, stick shift – someone drove it 600 feet in first gear and it died.
Now it won’t start. What could be wrong?

The list of what could be wrong is almost endless given the little information about the car you shared.

What engine? How many miles? Is the check engine light on? How long has it been on? Is there gas in the tank? Will the engine crank but not start? Does it not crank? Can you check fuel pressure? Can you check spark?

If you can get us some answers, we could give you some in return.

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179000 miles. Plenty of gas. Check engine light not on. No crank. Can’t check fuel pressure or spark. 4-liter engine.

Thank you!

Have someone check the battery with a volt meter.


This car didn’t come with a 4 liter engine. It’s either a 2 4 four cylinder which has a timing chain or a 3.0 or 3.3 liter v6 which has a timing belt. If it’s a timing belt it may have snapped considering it won’t crank. Thats if it’s an interference engine.

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The battery is fine. It’s a 4 cylinder engine.

how do you know the battery is fine? did you check it? how? do you know the connections are fine?

PS, there is a huge difference between 4 L and 4 cylinder.

PPS, please give us more than the minimal amount of info. the more info, the better the answers you will get.

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4 cylinder. Don’t know what other info you need. Thank you!

When you turn the key does anything happen ? Does the engine turn but not start or is there just nothing . Have you tried jumping to see if that works.

There is just nothing. Some warning lights come on. Have not tried jumping. Battery tested fine.

How was the battery tested? Did someone put a volt meter on it? If they did what was the voltage? When the key is turned is there any sound at all? A click or whirr? Lights on a dash can come on with a weak battery that is not strong enough to engage the starter.

When it died what happened? Did it just slowly sputter out? Did the wheels lock up? Any smoke smell or sound?

Just curious as to why “someone” was still in first gear after 600 feet. That’s over a tenth of a mile. Could this person have red lined it?

That was my thought too. Rev limiter should have protected the engine but at 179K internal engine damage could occur red-lining the engine for an extended time.
Zenaida-if you want to try a jump, I suggest a professional, not someone with jumper cables to avoid further damage.

Here’s a test: turn the headlights. Are they strong? Turn the key to Start. Do the lights dim considerably, and does the starter fail to turn the engine? That would point to internal engine damage that prevents the crankshaft from rotating. Let’s hope not.

Thank you all! There is no sound when the key is turned. I was told the car shook a lot before it died. The red-lining theory sounds possible to me. Or could it be the transmission?

Even if there is a problem with the transmission, you can’t start the engine without depressing the clutch pedal, and once the clutch pedal is depressed, the transmission is not engaged. Ergo–you can rule-out a transmission problem as the cause of the non-start.