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Celica T Sport 2002 - Rattle In Gear - Clutch Or Gearbox?

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Hi guys,

Recently bought a 2002 Celica Facelift T Sport 190, has done 84,000 miles.

I've noticed a noise that is only present and audible when the clutch is engaged. It sounds like a light rattle / grind and is only really noticeable when you lift off the throttle.

From a few searches online, people with similar sounding issues have needed anything from rebuilt gearbox to a simple replacement of a the clutch release bearing.

Has anybody got any experience with this kind of issue? I'm leaning towards it being an issue with a bearing around the input side of the gearbox/clutch rather than being a gearbox issue itself, as the noise is very much the same in whatever gear I try it in (so the noise ties up with engine speed rather than gear speed).

The car has just had a full service with Toyota and they couldn't find any issue (but I can't say their diagnostic skills were very good at all), so I'm not sure how best to go forward with this. While the car has good amount of stamps in the book, there's no detail around if the clutch has ever been replaced in the car.

Should I try a gearbox specialist or just a clutch specialist?

Thanks very much,


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Hard to know what to do, as you'll more than likely need to remove clutch to get to gearbox anyway, or vice versa, can be expensive just taking everything apart and putting back together, never mind anything that needs fixing.

My previous 190 had a rattle when lifting off the throttle around 2500rpm, any gear, was an issue with gearbox/clutch but never got round to finding out what it was before I part exed for my GT.

One way I knew it was clutch/gearbox issue was when the car was on stands one day I had the engine running and car in gear, car was making awful grinding noise coming from gearbox area. Doesn't do it with my GT, so I know it was a problem with that car. You might want to try the above and listen to where the sound is coming from if it does it.

Release bearing usually first call, have heard of it a few times.

Check gearbox Oil

Clutch wearing out? Depends on previous owner/heavy use of clutch, bad gear changes, but you can check by sticking into 6th at around 30mph and flooring the throttle, if the revs increase but the mph doesn't you'll know it's the clutch.

Personally If the car runs fine and you can put up with the noise would leave it for the time being, until you get a more pronounced noise to identify the problem, don't think there's anything else I can add.

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