Toyota is recalling 2.43 million hybrid vehicles for potential problems with stalling, including some Prius automobiles.
The company said Friday that in rare cases the vehicles might fail to enter a "failsafe" driving mode, lose power and stall. Power steering and braking would still work but a stall at a fast speed could increase risks of a crash.
The recall applies to some Toyota Prius and Auris hybrids made from October 2008 through November 2014. More than 800,000 vehicles in the United States will be involved in this recall, Toyota said in a statement.
The vehicles were involved in an earlier recall that did not fix the previously unanticipated problem that is being addressed now, the company said in a statement.
A Toyota dealer in California highlighted the issue earlier this year when it sued Toyota over what it claimed was an inadequate fix for the safety problem.
One driverthat she was driving in the fast lane on a busy Los Angeles freeway in January when something went wrong with her 2010 Toyota Prius hybrid.
"The experience was terrifying," Kathleen Ryan said. "It felt like someone pulled the emergency brake. I mean I couldn't believe what was happening; you step on the accelerator and nothing happened."
Toyota said it would update the software of the vehicles to remedy the problem for free.
The recall applies to 1.25 million vehicles in Japan, 807,000 in the U.S., 290,000 in Europe and 3,000 in China with the rest across the globe.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said it is reviewing complaints and other information provided by the public, and has been consulting with Toyota before Friday's recall.
"Owners of recalled model year 2010-2014 Prius and model year 2012-2014 Prius V vehicles should get the free repair when notified by Toyota," it said in a statement. "All car owners are encouraged to routinely check their vehicle identification number (VIN) for any open recall on Nhtsa.gov/recalls."
Toyota said it had received three reports in Japan related to the problem by the end of September and reported them to the transport ministry. They did not involve accidents.
It would not comment on incidents outside Japan, saying it was difficult to be certain about actual cases.
The recall is meant to address situations in which the failure of a specific component, coupled with hard acceleration, could cause the vehicle to lose power rather than enter a failsafe driving mode.