Toyota announces Prius recall

Toyota is to recall 1.9m Prius hybrid vehicles – 31,000 in the UK – after discovering a computer software fault which causes the vehicle to abruptly stop.

After receiving 400 reports of problems in North America and Japan, the world’s biggest car manufacturer also confirmed the UK vehicles are models manufactured between March 2009 and February 2014.

The new software problem can set off warning lights, and could cause the vehicle to enter a failsafe mode, which will see the car’s driving power reduced.

A Toyota spokesperson said: “Toyota has identified that the software setting could lead to higher thermal stress occurring in certain insulated-gate bipolar transistors in the boost converter which may lead to them deforming or being damaged.

“Should this happen, warning lights may be illuminated and the car is likely to switch to ‘failsafe’ operation. It can still be driven, but with reduced power. In limited cases the hybrid system may shut down, causing the vehicle to stop. The driver will not experience any change in the vehicle’s behaviour or performance prior to the problem occurring.”

The latest recall is a further blow to Toyota, which last year recalled 615,000 Sienna minivans, despite being the top-selling global carmaker with worldwide deliveries of nearly 10 million vehicles.


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