Mitsubishi Motors CEO Masuko to Step Down amid Dubious Fuel-Economy Testing Scandal

Mistubishi CEO Osamu Masuko to step downJapanese automobile manufacturer, Mitsubishi’s CEO Osamu Masuko is likely to resign following the confirmation that the company manipulated the fuel-economy testing since 1991. The reports suggest that Masuko has hinted the resignation possibility and discussed the same with few affiliated dealers and part makers after the scandal reports were revealed last week.

ABC News reported that the Chief Operating Officer of the company, Tetsuro Aikawa, also has decided to step down after a two-year stint with Mitsubishi Motors. According to the Japanese newspapers, Osamu and Tetsuro are expected to quit after the results for the fuel-economy testing scandal have been reported by the appointed committee.

Meanwhile, there are reports that the company officials recently admitted that the fuel-economy testing methods were forged for 25 years and said that they have been submitting non-compliant data to Japan’s transport ministry since 1991. The aggressive internal targets might have put pressure on the employees to overdo the fuel economy of the vehicles, which led to the tampering of reports over the decades, claimed Reuters.

The COO of the company, Tetsuro, said that the investigation is being carried out by a special committee in order to find out more irregularities in the Mitsubishi minicars.

“We don’t know the whole picture and we are in the process of trying to determine that,” said Aikawa at a news conference at the transport ministry, as reported by ET Auto. “I feel a great responsibility. It’s uncertain what action the company will take. Even, I don’t know why the employees resorted to such tactics to make mileage look better.”

The investigation panel is reported to consist of three lawyers with a former public prosecutor in order to further examine the fuel-economy testing method scandal from an outsider’s point of view. Aikawa also said it is still unclear how the customers will be compensated as the company is still undergoing investigation.

With all the mileage scandal news, CNBC reported that it is not the first time that Mitsubishi motors is experiencing such situation. It is said that the company was involved in an auto defects scandal in the early 2000s. “Mitsubishi struggled for years to win back consumer trust the scandal over cover-ups of problems such as failing brakes, faulty clutches and fuel tanks prone to falling off dating back to the 1970s,” reported BBC News. “That resulted in more than a million vehicles being recalled retroactively.”

Additionally, the company also faced serious accusation after a woman was killed down a sidewalk when a wheel rolled off a Mitsubishi truck in 2002.


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