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Toyota recalls thousands of cars due to software glitch

Toyota has announced that it is recalling 625,000 hybrid cars because of concerns surrounding a software glitch.

The Japanese automotive firm explained that in some circumstances, the problem could cause overheating, a loss of control and the involuntary shut down of the hybrid system.

Read more: Toyota and Oculus Rift show youngsters the dangers of driving

The models affected include Prius V minivans, called Prius Alpha and Prius+ in some markets, and a handful of others, all manufactured between May 2010 and November 2014. The recall affects approximately 340,000 vehicles in Japan, 160,000 in Europe and 120,000 in North America.

Toyota is, however, keen to stress that there have been no reports of any crashes or injuries as a result of the issue.

Although the recall will come as a blow to Toyota, it could also damage public trust in automobile innovation. Vehicles are becoming increasingly software reliant and the expected growth in connected cars is likely to see this continue. However, issues like the one affecting Prius V minivans and recent reports of collisions involving Google’s driverless cars will not help the industry.

Read more: How many times have Google’s self-driving cars crashed?

For Toyota, however, thoughts will now turn to ensuring that its brand image is not overly damaged. Earlier this month the manufacturer had to recall an estimated 2.86 million vehicles worldwide because of a defective air bag supplied by fellow Japanese firm Takata.

Barclay has been writing about technology for a decade, starting out as a freelancer with IT Pro Portal covering everything from London’s start-up scene to comparisons of the best cloud storage services.  After that, he spent some time as the managing editor of an online outlet focusing on cloud computing, furthering his interest in virtualization, Big Data, and the Internet of Things.