UPDATE: Toyota has now announced an official global recall for the 2010 Toyota Prius
FOLLOWING REPORTS out of Japan this week that suggested such a move, Toyota has today announced a global recall of the 2010 Toyota Prius. The recall affects 2378 Prius cars in Australia and around 400,000 globally.
The recall follows an announcement by Toyota Australia last week that it is investigating a possible brake problem in the new Prius.
Toyota Australia Senior Executive Director Dave Buttner told TMR yesterday that there was "no reason why we wouldn't fall in line if a global recall was called", and confirmed tonight that an official recall had been issued.
However Mr Buttner was clear that the issue is not one of brake failure, and that only two cases have been reported in Australia so far.
"This issue we're now looking it is not a 'failure', as such, but an inconsistency in brake feel," Buttner said to TMR, explaining that the complaints concerned the brake pedal going soft after ABS activation on some surfaces.
"The brakes don't fail," he said, "if you press the pedal harder the car still stops."
Mr Buttner confirmed that only two Prius vehicles had been reported as being affected by the problem in recent weeks. While the effects of the brake problem aren't life-threatening, Toyota's decision to recall the third-generation Prius is designed to prevent any further issue.
The recall will see a change made to the ABS management program of the vehicle's Electronic Control Unit (ECU) to improving response time. The procedure is expected to take no more than an hour and is to be carried out at Toyota dealers at no cost to Prius owners.
Affected VIN numbers range from 01000092 - 01157273 and 05000003 - 05118023, with the cars built between 07/04/2009 - 27/01/2010 and 13/01/2009 - 27/01/2010 respectively
There have been no accidents linked to this issue reported in Australia. No other Toyota or Lexus models in Australia are affected by this recall, and the recently-launched Hybrid Camry's brake system does not suffer from the same problem as the Prius.
In the United States, the government-operated Office of Defects Investigation has so far recorded 124 Prius brake reports from customers, while Toyota says only 111 cases have been reported to it globally.
On the subject of the accelerator recall that has been plaguing Toyota in North America, Mr Buttner said Australian Toyota owners should not be worried.
"The recall that's been announced [for accelerator pedal assemblies] does not impact on any Toyota built or imported into Australia," he said.