Toyota is recalling 340,000 Prius cars around the world – of which 17,000 are in Europe and 4633 are in the UK – due to a fault found with the car’s parking brake.
The first instance of the fault, in which the parking brake disengages without warning if not left in park mode or switched off, was reported in Japan earlier this year, but it has taken until now for sufficient reports to come in for the fault to be recognised as a recurring issue. A Toyota UK spokesman said that the company is unaware of any incidents having happened in the UK.
The affected cars were built between August 2015 and October 2016, and the majority are in Japan and America, although some are in the UK. The fault is only found in the current generation Prius, and Toyota confirmed that no other models are affected.
A Toyota spokesman also clarified that the car automatically puts itself in park mode when switched off, so to present any risk of rolling, the car has to be switched on and not in park mode.
The recall will start in the coming weeks once an official announcement has been made by Toyota, and the company will follow the DVLA process of recalling cars. It takes around half an hour to complete the fix to the car, which involves a Toyota technicial adding clips to the brake cable dust boots to prevent debris and water from entering the brake cable.
Concerned owners are encouraged by Toyota to contact their local dealer or call Toyota's recall helpline on 0800 8766 750.