Toyota sweat over coolant pumps
TOYOTA says it will repair faulty coolant pumps on about 650,000 Prius hybrids after reports of overheating.
Toyota will call more than 650,000 Prius back to their local dealerships to fix a coolant pump problem that could cause the vehicle to overheat and lose power.
The problem, the latest in a string of quality concerns to plague the maker in the past year, has not been deemed a safety issue.
But the maker says it will pay to fix all the affected vehicles, built between 2003 and 2007. The recall is expected to cost roughly $US65 million ($67.3 million) in labour costs alone.
Most of the cars were sold in the United States, but Toyota Australia says the campaign affects 6566 local vehicles built between August 2003 and May 2007.
The company says it hasn't received any reports of overheating from local customers.
It says the design of the defective electric water pump let air bubbles enter the cooling system, slowing down the circulation of coolant and raising water temperatures.
A warning light will come on if the system begins to heat up, but if that warning is ignored the car could overheat and go into a "limp-home mode", where engine power is cut.
A local spokeswoman says anyone whose warning light comes on should take their vehicle to a local dealer, who will replace the faulty part.
Toyota won't begin notifying customers by mail until February, but the company defends the delay, saying the problem is not a safety issue and time is needed to order replacement parts.
The issue is the second this year to beset the world's top-selling hybrid car. In February, about 400,000 Priuses were recalled for a braking problem. About 2400 cars were affected in Australia.
Reuters reports that since last November, Toyota has recalled about 14 million vehicles worldwide, including more than 8 million cars in the United States for sticking floor mats and pedals.