Q: Probable VSC system damage. Anyway to know?

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I suspect my car's VSC system has been damaged. I went over a curb the other day with the rear right wheel and as soon as the wheel hit the ground again the screen lit up with Check VSC, Check Hybrid System, and Stop the car immediately. I drove another mile and parked it back home. I started it up again and tried driving, but the car wont move foward or backwards. Its like its stuck. Even the gear handle is stuck. My toyota dealer suspects water damage but they still cant find anything even after several visits with the same issue of the car starting but not driving. Its costing me a fortune! What are the signs/symptoms of a damaged VSC system in my 2008 toyota highlander hybrid? Thanks!

My car has 56000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

The problem that you are having with the vehicle can be pinpointed by using the Factory Service Manual (FSM) and, in a step by step process, test the system components to rule in or out the dozens of potential causes documented in the FSM. That investigation would begin with downloading any stored diagnostic trouble codes. The segment of the FSM documenting the vehicle stability control system/hybrid system is hundreds of pages long though and so the dealer has almost undoubtedly NOT actually performed a diagnostic. They probably made a few cursory checks and upon not finding the cause readily or quickly, they reported back to you with a vacuous guess about "water damage" that is meaningless. You do have a potentially complex problem and in looking through the NHTSA database, I see lots of evidence for concern. In particular, this vehicle is reported in the NHTSA database by other consumers for hybrid inverter problems and the symptoms accompanying that inverter failure parallel what you are describing. The ONLY way to resolve this, and get to the bottom of it, is to, first download any stored codes. Second, see if any of the codes implicate hardware or software that could potentially explain the symptoms. If yes, those codes must be followed up on and fully resolved. If there are no relevant codes stored, you MUST use the documentation in the FSM, start on page 1 and go through each and every test protocol until the fault is identified. It might be resolved on page 10; it might be resolved in the last page; there is no way of telling beforehand. It is a laborious process but it is your ONLY option. Be exceptionally wary of replacing ANY part until a diagnostic conclusively pinpoints the faulty component. I can imagine your frustration but, at the same time, do keep in mind that a motor vehicle, even a complex hybrid with lots of circuit boards and controllers, is NOT the space shuttle. That is, although the diagnostic looks like a mini-encyclopedia, the steps required are quite finite in number and if the mechanic simply follows the instructions in the FSM the fault will be found. To obtain the services of an appropriate specialist, please simply telephone in your request to YourMechanic and they will assist you. If you have further questions or concerns, do not hesitate to re-contact YourMechanic as we are always here to help you.

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