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Toyota Prius recall: SA affected

2014-02-12 09:21

THIRD RECALL FOR TOP HYBRID: The latest recall is the third to affect Toyota’s Prius. Image: TOYOTA SA

TOKYO, Japan - Toyota has issued a worldwide recall for all 1.9-million of its third-generation Prius hybrids worldwide to correct a programming glitch in its hybrid system.

Toyota said the problem was in the software used to control the boost converter in a module that is part of the hybrid system and its failure could cause the car to shutdown, even when moving.


Toyota said: "The setting of the software could cause higher thermal stress in certain transistors within the booster converter and these transistors could deform or become damaged. This will result in various warning lights being illuminated,and probably cause the vehicle to enter a fail-safe mode."

A spokesperson for Toyota SA said the recall would involve 321 Prius units in the country and was regarded as "not safety-critical". The fix, the spokesperson added, would require a few minutes to update the hybrid' software.

"Have a cup of coffee and by then the job will be done," he said.

Dealers would be contacting customers but second or third owners of Prius units from the affected date range should make arrangements to have the update done.

Toyota added that the car could still be driven but under reduced power. In limited cases, the hybrid system could shut down, causing the vehicle to stop, possibly while being driven.

About half of the recalls are in Japan and 713 000 in North America, a Toyota spokesman said. No incidents have been reported related to the defect.

The latest action would be the third recall for the Prius.

The Prius is one of Toyota's best-selling models and has become synonymous with fuel-saving hybrid technology.

Toyota did not disclose cost estimates for recalls.


The number of vehicles recalled has ballooned over the years as automakers increasingly use common parts across multiple models to save development and procurement costs. Since a damaging quality crisis in 2010 that led to the recall of more than 10-million vehicles and marked a turning point in Toyota's 70-year history automakers in general have become more proactive in addressing safety concerns.

In late 2012 Toyota issued two multi-million vehicle recalls, including one of more than 7.4 million vehicles to fix power window switches that were a potential fire hazard. It was the industry's biggest single recall since Ford took eight-million vehicles off the roads in 1996.
Read more on:    toyota  |  industry  |  new models

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