There's no question Toyota identified a real and potentially dangerous problem in the brake system of the 2010 Prius. They recalled 400,000 hybrids (mostly Priuses) over the issue, after all. Still, the company made clear that even though every recalled vehicle would be fixed, not every one had displayed problem signs. In fact, only about 200 complaints have been filed in the U.S. and Japan over the issue.
So, what happens if you take a Prius (or a Toyota Matrix) and actually try to get the vehicles to display the "unintended acceleration" that has caused so much trouble? CTV's Jeremy Cato thought he'd attempt just that, and discovered that it's pretty hard to recreate. In fact, when he stepped down hard on the gas and brake pedals at the same time:
The whole experience was utterly unremarkable. ... [The brakes] worked very time. I simply could not lose control of these Toyotas, no matter how hard I tried.
This will be little comfort to people who have experience the brake problems firsthand, but it shows that the cars can stil be safe.