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Toyota to recall 2.7 million faulty vehicles worldwide

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After steering wheel and water pump flaws were discovered, Toyota must recall almost 3 million vehicles sold worldwide.

The Japanese car maker will recall 2.77 million vehicles -- including the Prius hybrid and Toyota Corolla -- in a roundup of at least nine models.

The filing was submitted this week to Japan's transport ministry.

The recall is due to the steering shaft being too soft in some car models -- which could become deformed if the steering wheel is "frequently and forcefully turned to the full lock position while driving at a very slow speed," according to the BBC. In addition, a faulty water pump is under scrutiny and as a precautionary measure, flawed vehicles equipped with one will be taken off the road.

According to Toyota, the move is preemptive, as no accidents due to faulty parts have been reported so far.

This hasn't necessarily been a good year for the automotive giant, who now has secured the most recent crown for the such a large vehicle recall of over 10 million in a single year. The last of such scale in record was when rival Ford recalled over 8 million vehicles in 1996. Only a month ago, Toyota announced a further 7.4 million vehicles would be taken off the road due to faulty power window switches.

In 2009, Toyota was forced to recall over 10 million vehicles after customers complained of unintentional acceleration because of poorly-placed floor mats that trapped pedals.

Image credit: Toyota/CNET

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— By on November 13, 2012, 8:06 PM PST

Charlie Osborne

Contributing Editor

Charlie Osborne is a freelance journalist and photographer based in London. In addition to SmartPlanet, she also writes for business technology website ZDNet and consumer technology site CNET. She holds a degree in medical anthropology from the University of Kent. Follow her on Twitter. Disclosure