PRIUS RECALL: Toyota SA's fourth-gen Prius is affected in a global recall for faulty brakes. Image: QuickPic
Tokyo - Toyota is recalling 340 000 hybrid Prius cars around the world, 212 000 of them in Japan and 94 000 in North America, for a defect in their parking brakes.
Toyota said Wednesday (October 12) it has received reports of crashes, injuries and deaths. The Japanese automaker refused to provide details, saying it was still looking into the reports.
Toyota said the parking brake cable can disengage, causing the brakes to stop working properly. So if the car is left in any gear other than park, it could start rolling away, and possibly crash.
Toyota South Africa says 58 local units have been identified. The automaker says: "The campaign on Prius has been introduced to replace a clip on the parking brake assembly, which if disengaged would leave the parking brake inoperative. The operation only affects the parking brake and normal vehicle braking functions are unaffected.
Toyota SA says owners will be contacted by a Toyota representative to have the corrective action implemented by their local dealer free of charge.
Owners can contact the Toyota Customer Care Centre on 0800 139 111 to check whether their vehicle is affected.
Toyota said 17 000 Prius vehicles were recalled in Europe, and the rest in Australia and other regions. The problem models were manufactured from August 2015 through October 2016.
The company said all the vehicles were manufactured in Japan.