Toyota has issued a recall for 242,000 units of its third-generation Prius hybrid cars globally for an issue relating with the brake pressure accumulator. The voluntary safety recall was done in accordance with the Japanese automaker’s ‘zero tolerance’ commitment for quality concerns. The issue affects vehicles built between March to October 2009.

Toyota has diagnosed that the issue originates from the brake pressure accumulator.  The brake pressure accumulator consists of a metal plunger containing brake fluid, encased in a metal housing. The plunger has metal pleated bellows to allow for motion. Nitrogen gas is sealed between the plunger and the housing.

There is a possibility of a fatigue crack developing in the bellows through vibration of the plunger during driving. Should this happen, nitrogen gas could leak into the brake fluid and cause the pedal stroke to become longer, resulting in decreased braking force.

The driver will become aware of the problem through a warning light illuminating on the dashboard. Should this occur, the vehicle should not be driven and owners should report the issue to their nearest Toyota dealership. Vehicle owners are otherwise being contacted about the recall within the coming weeks via mail.

The recall remedy will involve inspection of the brake booster pump assembly to see if it is equipped with an involved accumulator.  If so, the dealer will replace the brake booster pump assembly with an improved one. The repair process will take between three to three and a half hours to complete at no cost to the customer.

We have yet to get the exact number of affected units from Toyota Motor Philippines Corporation with regards to the global recall. We shall update you once we receive the figure.