Tokyo, Japan — Daihatsu automotive has halted the sales and shipments of its vehicles at all Japan factory locations amid a safety probe revealing the automaker has been forging safety tests for the past 30 years.
According to the safety investigation made at the end of December by Ministry of Transportation officials, Daihatsu, a subsidiary of Toyota, has admitted to violating standards on crash tests on more than 88,000 vehicles sold under the Toyota banner in countries such as Malaysia and Indonesia where Daihatsu also has factories.
This number was originally reported in April, 2023 with the automaker specifically not complying with safety tests such as the regulatory requirements for certain side collision tests by improperly modifying the inside lining of the front seat door on vehicles for some checks.
However, in May 2023, Daihatsu said that internal reviews had discovered more incidents, revealing that it had submitted incorrect data for collision tests on two hybrid electric vehicles. The company said at the time that it had stopped shipping and selling the affected models.
As of the latest report received at the end of December, 174 more cases were revealed in which Daihatsu was found manipulating data, making false statements or improperly tinkering with vehicles to pass safety certifications.
In a response statement to the ongoing issue, Toyota outlined that “fundamental reform is needed to revitalize Daihatsu.”
“This will be an extremely significant task that cannot be accomplished overnight,” Toyota added, saying that it would require a sweeping review of management, operations, and how the unit was structured.
“We recognize the extreme gravity of the fact that Daihatsu’s neglect of the certification process has shaken the very foundations of the company as an automobile manufacturer,” Toyota said.
Currently, there have been no reports of accidents or deaths related to the rigged tests.
The Japan factory shutdowns will last at least until the end of the month and will affect approximately 9,000 employees. At the time of writing, no reports have been made on whether Daihatsu’s plants in Indonesia and Malaysia will also be affected.
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