Things seems to be getting worse for Mitsubishi after the brand admitted to falsifying fuel economy data for about 600,000 mini-cars in Japan.
Not only has the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ordered the brand to hand over additional information on U.S. fuel economy testing and to retest the fuel efficiency of its American cars, a report from Automotive News Europe claims that Mitsubishi’s two top executives, the CEO and COO, are going to resign. Since the scandal broke, Mitsubishi’s market value has been cut in half.
Both the EPA and the California Air Resources Board (CARB) will also be conducting independent testing of Mitsubishi models to make sure they comply with U.S. regulation.
On Tuesday, Mitsubishi said that it has been using these incorrect fuel economy testing methods for 25 years to purposefully boost fuel economy ratings. An internal investigation has already begun to see if the fuel economy cheating affects other models, the results of which will be delivered in three months time. It is expected that Chairman and CEO Osamu Masuko along with President and COO Tetsuro Aikawa will step down once the report is released.
Mitsubishi is coming up with plans to compensate owners along with Nissan Motor Co., though we won’t know the details of the compensation until after the investigation. Nissan sold two different models that were built by Mitsubishi and initially discovered the fuel economy discrepancy during internal testing. Government tax rebates on its mini-cars may also need to be paid back, as the vehicles shouldn’t have been eligible for them.
The cost of this scandal won’t be known until the full scope of the cheating is revealed. In 2014, Hyundai and Kia were fined $100 million in the U.S. for overstating fuel economy figures.
[Source: Automotive News Europe]
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