The chairman of Toyota apologizes for cheating in vehicle tests, suspends production of three models

On Monday, Toyota Chairman Akio Toyoda issued an apology for widespread cheating on certification tests for seven different car models, while the company also stopped manufacturing of three of them.

On June 3, 2024, in Tokyo, Honda Motor President and CEO Toshihiro Mibe (L) bows to open a press conference. Along with its Japanese competitors Honda, Mazda, Suzuki, and Yamaha, Toyota said on June 3 that it has halted domestic shipments of three car models due to breaches of government certification regulations.

The leading carmaker in Japan engaged in extensive faulty testing that included using old or insufficient data for collision tests, as well as inaccurate testing for airbag inflation and rear-seat damage in crashes. It was also discovered that engine power tests had been manipulated.

The Corolla Fielder, Axio, and Yaris Cross are no longer being produced in Japan, according to Toyota Motor Corp., which is headquartered in Toyota City, Central Japan. Models that were discontinued also had the faulty tests.

According to the corporation, the Corolla subcompact and the Lexus luxury automobiles that are now on the road are safe despite their offenses.

At a Tokyo press conference, Toyoda bowed deeply and stated, “We sincerely apologize.”

In January, the Japanese government launched an investigation into Toyota. The most recent issues are unrelated to Toyota’s foreign manufacturing.

On Monday, rival Japanese automaker Mazda Motor Corp. announced that two of its models-the Roadster and the Mazda 2-were no longer being produced due to similar irregular certification testing. It indicated that the tests were conducted using the wrong engine control software.

The Hiroshima, southwest-based Mazda also admitted to failing crash tests on three of its obsolete models. The safety of the cars is not impacted by the infractions.

The Tokyo-based Honda Motor Co. also issued an apology late on Monday for conducting incorrect tests on a number of models, including the Accord, Odyssey, and Fit, whose affected earlier versions are no longer in production, including those on noise levels and torque. It stated that there is no impact on the vehicles’ safety.

Approximately two years ago, certification issues emerged at Hino Motors, the truck manufacturer, Daihatsu Motor Co., the small-model expert, and Toyota Industries Corp., the machinery and auto components maker.

According to Shinji Miyamoto, a Toyota executive in charge of customer satisfaction, the company started investigating its own tests after discovering issues at the group firms.

Toyota and its group companies have been humiliated by the apparent unraveling of their testing processes. For decades, the carmaker has prided itself on its manufacturing precision and corporate culture, which empowers workers to build “ever-better cars.”

According to Toyoda, the corporation might have shortened the tests because it was too eager to finish them at a time when the number of model variations was growing.

Over 10 million Toyota automobiles are sold worldwide.

Toyoda, the founder’s grandson, noted that different certification standards applied in different countries and indicated that some regulations may be excessively strict. However, he insisted on saying that he didn’t support the violations.

We are not an ideal business. Toyoda stated, “But if we notice something is incorrect, we will stand back and keep attempting to fix it.