February 23, 2024

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Daihatsu: Toyota-owned automaker halts production in Japan after admitting to tampering with safety tests for 30 years

Daihatsu: Toyota-owned automaker halts production in Japan after admitting to tampering with safety tests for 30 years

Kyodo News/Getty Images

Daihatsu Oyamazaki Automobile Plant in Kyoto, Japan. Toyota's small car unit said it will suspend production at all domestic plants until at least the end of January due to the safety testing scandal.

Hong Kong / Tokyo

Japanese automaker Daihatsu, owned by Toyota, has halted its local production after admitting to falsifying the results of safety tests for its vehicles over a period of more than 30 years.

The brand, known for making small passenger cars, has halted production at all four of its Japanese factories as of Tuesday, including a plant at its headquarters in Osaka, a brand spokesperson told CNN.

The closure will continue until at least the end of January, affecting approximately 9,000 employees working in local productions, according to the representative.

The move comes as Daihatsu grapples with Toyota's escalating safety scandal He says “It shook the very foundations of the company.”

Last week Daihatsu Announce An independent third-party panel found evidence of tampering with safety tests on up to 64 vehicle models, including those sold under the Toyota brand.

As a result, Daihatsu said it would temporarily suspend all domestic and international vehicle shipments and consult with authorities on how to proceed.

The scandal is another blow to the automaker, which has acknowledged it in April For violating crash test standards on more than 88,000 vehicles, most of which are sold under the Toyota brand in countries such as Malaysia and Thailand.

In that case, the front seat door inner lining was “improperly adjusted” for some of the tests, while Daihatsu did not comply with regulatory requirements for some of the side-impact tests, it said in a statement at the time.

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In May, the automaker He said It discovered more violations, revealing that it had provided incorrect data for crash tests on two hybrid electric cars. The company said at the time that it had stopped shipping and selling those models.

The latest investigation further threatens the company's reputation. according to a report Last Wednesday, the investigation committee announced another 174 cases of Daihatsu manipulating data, making false statements or improperly manipulating vehicles to pass safety certification tests.

The report stated that the oldest case dates back to 1989, with a noticeable increase in the number of cases since 2014.

Toyota shares fell 4% in Tokyo last Thursday after this news. The stock has since pared some losses.

In response, the Japanese giant promised to make radical changes to its subsidiary, saying in a statement last week that “a fundamental overhaul is needed to revitalize Daihatsu.”

“This will be a critical task that cannot be accomplished overnight,” Toyota said, adding that it will require a comprehensive review of management, operations and how the unit is structured.

“We recognize the seriousness of the fact that Daihatsu's neglect of the certification process has shaken the company's foundations as an automobile manufacturer,” Toyota added.