The fuel data manipulation scandal is likely to force Mitsubishi’s top two executives to resign, according to Japanese media.
The confession that they cheated on fuel consumption tests has halved Mitsubishi’s market value in a week and this manipulation is likely to lead to some changes in the company’s top management. Japanese media have reported this week that Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Osamu Masuko has told some dealers and parts suppliers of his intention to step down, while President and Chief Operating Officer Tetsuro Aikawa has also decided to resign. Mitsubishi initially said it used fuel economy testing methods that did not comply with Japanese regulations since 2002, for later to admit it has started to manipulate the mileage data as early as 1991. The automaker has announced it has formed a Special Investigation Committee to look deeper into the scandal, an investigation that will last about three months. The two top executives have reportedly said they would resign after the committee reports on the results.
The automaker has said it compiled data for fuel economy tests using US standards or the “high-speed coasting tests,” which differ from the “coasting” ones required by the Japanese laws. “A relatively low value was selected from among the test results for use as the driving resistance value in order to give the appearance of greater fuel consumption. Data for the remaining three grades were calculated without testing based on the data for the fuel-economy grade,” Mitsubishi revealed in a statement.