Toyota recall: millions of potentially faulty hybrid vehicles

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Toyota has announced that it will recall 55,519 hybrid cars in the United Kingdom as part of a 2.4 million-car global recall.

The global recall covers Prius and Auris models produced between October 2008 and November 2014 and affects 8,476 vehicles sold in Australia.

The recall impacts about 2.4 million vehicles - 1.25 million in Japan and 830,000 in North America, Toyota spokesman Jean-Yves Jault told Bloomberg Friday.

Toyota Ireland also said that there are no reported incidents in Ireland. "While power steering and braking would remain operational, a vehicle stall while driving at higher speeds could increase the risk of a crash", Toyota said.

Toyota said the cars affected had already been recalled previously for other reasons in 2014 and 2015. This is the third time Toyota has tried to fix this defect since February 2014, when it recalled 698,457 Prius models from 2010-2014 for ECUs with faulty transistors that could disable the electric motor or inverter. The problem would be fixed by means of a software upgrade that would take about 40 minutes, he said.

The problem identified arises when the cars fail to enter "failsafe driving mode as intended".

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Toyota said it had received three reports of the problem in Japan but they did not involve accidents.

"If this occurs, the vehicle could lose power and stall".

Toyota has announced a safety recall of some 807,000 Prius and Prius V cars in the US, saying that the company needs to fix a problem that could cause the vehicles to lose power and stall "in rare situations".

This is reportedly coming barely a month after another recall affecting hybrids.

Toyota then updated the software.