Toyota Recalls 82,000 Hybrid Vehicles

Toyota (NYSE:TM) has recalled 82,200 vehicles sold in the U.S., claiming certain transistors in hybrids could be damaged from heat caused by a large current flow during high-load driving.

The Japanese automaker has voluntarily taken back 45,000 Highlander Hybrids and 36,700 Lexus RX 400h vehicles due to manufacturing issues related to its intelligent power module, which contains a control board with transistors, located inside the hybrid system inverter.

The company said that if the transistors were to be damaged, various warnings lamps would illuminate on the instrument panel and in most cases the vehicle would enter a fall-safe driving mode.

In some cases, though, the power supply circuit fuse could blow when the transistor in damaged, causing the hybrid system to stop and the vehicle to coast to a stop.

Toyota, which has been struggling to revamp production along with rivals Honda (NYSE:HMC) and Nissan (NASDAQ:NSANY) after the March 11 earthquake and tsunami in Japan stifled supplies, said it is working on obtaining the necessary replacement parts.

Once the parts are available, Toyota said it would notify owners.