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Toyota Prius Engine Stall Risk Results in Recall for Hybrid Vehicles

More than 750,000 Toyota Prius hybrid vehicles have been recalled, after the manufacturer identified a fault in a “fail-safe” mode, which could cause engine power loss and a stall risk while in motion, increasing the risk of an accident.

The Toyota Prius recall was announced on June 24, following reports of engine problems caused by a software defect that may not allow the vehicle to enter into a fail-safe mode.

The recall involves certain model year gas-electric Prius hybrid vehicles that are equipped with an inverter designed to put the vehicles into a fail-safe mode in the event the hybrid system experiences faults. According to Toyota, in rare circumstances, the vehicles could fail to go into the mode when faults occur in the hybrid system, causing the vehicles to suddenly stall without warning.

Toyota is warning customers that in the event of this failure, the vehicles may lose power and stall at higher speeds, increasing the risk of a crash and injury. Drivers that experience this sudden failure will still have power steering and braking ability, but could experience difficulty controlling the vehicle or come to a stop in a dangerous location.

Included in the recall are approximately 752,000 model year 2013 through 2015 Prius and 2014 through 2017 Prius v hybrid models that were manufactured by Toyota Automotive Manufacturing, and were distributed for sale worldwide.

The manufacturer estimates 267,000 recalled models were distributed for sale throughout the United States to licensed dealers.

Toyota announced they will begin notifying owners by late August 2020, and will provide instructions on how to schedule a free repair at their local dealer, where dealers will be instructed to update the hybrid software. Customers who have experienced an inverter failure with system faults will receive a replacement.

Customers with additional questions or concerns regarding the recall may contact Toyota Customer Experience Center at 1-800-331-4331 or the Lexus Guest Experience Center at 1-800-255-3987.

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