Nissan discovers emissions-related misconduct at Japanese factories

AUTO NEWS

Internal investigation uncovers deviations in fuel economy, emissions tests

Rigorous internal checks and audits are becoming a more rigorous part of many automakers' daily operations. With scandals involving sheet metal with falsified datafaulty airbag recalls, and even things like Dieselgate, confidence in how automakers produce their cars is gradually being affected. 

Last year, Nissan was hit by an issue when the Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT) sent Nissan a notice after they discovered that final vehicle inspections were carried out by the wrong technicians. The issue forced Nissan to suspend production in order to correct the improper practices.

Now Nissan is being vigilant, and the automaker just released a statement, one that says they had found more internal problems that need to be corrected. 

In line with MLIT orders for Nissan to improve their operations, Nissan says they have been “proactively carrying out comprehensive compliance checks of various parts of its operations”. The result was a discovery that Nissan's domestic Japanese production factories (except Nissan Motor Kyushu) had misconduct-related problems with regards to emissions tests

1) Performance of exhaust emissions and fuel economy tests that deviated from the prescribed testing environment.

2) Creation of inspection reports based on altered measurement values.

Nissan did not elaborate on the statement or release any actual data, but what's clear is that technicians had been performing exhaust emissions and fuel economy tests that do not conform to standards, something that Nissan terms as “misconduct”.

Nissan has reported the result of the investigation to the Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism. Nissan says that they have retained the services of a law firm to carry out an investigation into the causes of the misconduct within their own factories, and work on appropriate countermeasures. 

Interestingly enough, despite the discovery of the misconduct, Nissan says that they have confirmed that their vehicles (except GT-R) conform to Japanese safety standards, and meet the standards for exhaust emissions, and their official fuel economy figures. 

Nissan says they will continue the internal audits and investigations into various frameworks, organizations, and process to make sure they are in compliance with official regulations.

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