Company provided “fictional” information about fuel economy tests.

Mitsubishi’s fuel-economy scandal has claimed president and chief operating officer Tetsuro Aikawa, who announced his resignation today. Mitsubishi executive vice president Ryugo Nakao is also resigning; both resignations are effective June 24. Both men had been in those positions since June 2014.

The executive departures come in the wake of the revelation that Mitsubishi had cheated on fuel economy tests for 25 years, a problem discovered after the company was accused of misstating efficiency data for certain city cars. The company’s stock price has tumbled since the cheating was revealed, with Mitsubishi saying today that Aikawa and Nakao resigned because the efficiency scandal “has caused tremendous trouble and concern to our customers and all of our stakeholders.”

Mitsubishi revealed today more results from its internal investigation into the wide-ranging efficiency scandal, offering even more evidence of just how much cheating was ingrained into the corporate culture. For starters, rather than using actual measured figures for rolling resistance, engineers calculated fuel consumption using resistance numbers that had been “arbitrarily altered.”

Perhaps the most damning news is that Mitsubishi misled Japanese officials. When the company had to provide legally-required reports on its economy testing, Mitsubishi said today, engineers used “fictional information such as test date, weather, atmospheric pressure, and air temperature.” The cheating affected nearly every model: When testing the Pajero SUV, for instance, engineers used rolling resistance and air resistance data from a completely different car. When testing the RVR (sold in the U.S. as the Mitsubishi Outlander Sport), technicians never measured rolling resistance and instead “calculated it on paper based on improperly altered data.”

Despite these early results from its investigation, Mitsubishi does not directly lay blame with company executives. “No direct instructions to carry out the improper conduct were given by management,” a statement said today. “However the management had an insufficient understanding of the actual operational practices of the product development section.”

Mitsubishi’s investigation of its fuel-economy scandal will continue. A special investigation committee into the matter was started on April 25.

Source: Mitsubishi

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