Nissan Motor said on Monday it had improperly measured exhaust emissions and fuel economy for 19 vehicle models sold in Japan, the second case in less than a year where misconduct has been discovered in its inspection processes. Nissan said it had found sample test environments for emissions and fuel economy in final vehicle inspections at most of its factories in Japan were not in line with domestic standards, and that inspection reports were based on altered measurements.
The incident is the latest in a growing list of data tampering in Japan which has tarnished the image of the country’s manufacturing industry, known for high-quality, efficient production.
The latest misconduct does not impact vehicles exported overseas, as it applies to requirements intended specifically for the Japanese market, Nissan said.
Shares in the Japanese automaker closed down about 5% at their lowest in more than a year. The news came after the close of trading, but the company had said earlier it would make an announcement about its emissions tests, sparking concerns.
The admission came after Nissan said in October that for decades uncertified inspectors had signed off on final checks for cars sold in Japan, triggering a domestic recall of 1.2 million vehicles.
“This is a deep and serious issue for our company,” chief operating officer Yasuhiro Yamauchi told reporters at a briefing.
“We realise that our compliance awareness remains lacking,” he said, adding the company would carry out an investigation into the issue to determine the root causes, which it expects will take a month or more. The issue was discovered during voluntary compliance checks it launched following last year’s vehicle inspection scandal, and affects models including the Note, the subcompact hatchback and the Juke SUV crossover.