Bad news for Toyota: they are recalling nearly 2 million Priuses. The company has announced that roughly a million Priuses in Japan are being recalled, as well as 700,000 in the United States, and another 30,000 or so in the United Kingdom.
The issues has caused no reported accidents or injuries, but the motor/generator control ECU and hybrid control ECU software need to be updated. The software settings could possibly result in thermal stress in the transistors, which could potentially cause the hybrid system to shut down, even while the vehicle is being operated.
The real story, however, may be that Toyota is a little behind the times in updating software. The owners of the recalled Priuses will be notified when their local dealership has the software update available, and the cars will need to come in to the shop for a roughly 40-minute update. It is, of course, notable that Tesla had a similar issue in the fall of 2012. But their response was much different; they offered the first ever over-the-air firmware update, which allowed owners to update their software from their own garage, at a time of their choice.
That is now standard at Tesla, but yet to be seen at Toyota.
Unfortunately, this is not the first recall to the Prius. It happened in 2010, as well as in 2013. Great car, but it’s hard to look past those flaws.
In addition to the millions of Priuses, Toyota is also recalling select Tacomas, RAV4s, and Lexus RX 350s for similar updates.
Photo Credit: Toyota