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Toyota recalls 100,000 Prius cars

Toyota said Wednesday it would recall some 139,000 vehicles globally, including 106,000 first-generation Prius hybrid vehicles because of a problem with the steering system.

The recall covers nearly 48,000 units of the Prius in Japan and a total of 58,000 units abroad, including 52,000 in the United States.

Subject to the US recall are 2001 through 2003 model Prius vehicles, according to Toyota Motor Sales, USA, Inc.

"If the steering wheel is repeatedly and strongly turned to the full-lock position, there is a possibility the nuts securing the pinion shaft in the steering gear box assembly may become loose," the company said in a statement.

"If the vehicle is continuously operated in this condition, over time, the customer will gradually notice significant increased steering effort when making a left turn."

Toyota dealers will fix the problem at no charge to the owner, it said.

Toyota also announced a recall of more than 21,000 iQ compact cars in Japan to fix the braking system. A total of 12,000 iQs will be recalled in other countries including Britain, according to Toyota.

"The concern relates to an inadequate cleaning process during manufacture of the brake tubes which could lead to foreign material passing into the brake master cylinder," Toyota (GB) PLC said.

"This could lead to brake force reduction and increased pedal travel," it said in a statement.