Mitsubishi Mileage Scandal Makes its Way to the U.S.
A day after its head office was raided by Japanese Transport Ministry officials, the U.S. is going to put Mitsubishis mileage claims under scrutiny.
The scandal began when Mitsubishi admitted it overstated fuel economy numbers on its Japanese market eK mini wagons, but Reuters is now claiming the false data extends to U.S. market vehicles.
Reports in Japanese media single out the diminutive electric i-MiEV, which has sold in the U.S. since 2011. Overseas RVR and Outlander models might also be saddled with misleading mileage numbers.
The scandal has caused Mitsubishis stock value to drop 40 percent since midweek, prompting Japans Transport Minister Keiichi Ishii to tell reporters, This is a serious problem that could lead to the loss of trust in our countrys auto industry.
Now that U.S.-bound vehicles have become suspect, the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration has asked Mitsubishi to turn over data on domestic models. Reuters claimed the NHTSA wouldnt comment on what specific vehicles it wanted information on, or whether it planned to put other automakers under the microscope.
Mitsubishi might be forced to buy back affected vehicles in the Japanese market, while repaying the government the green car subsidies it offered on select models.