Subaru shares fall on possible fuel efficiency readings scandal

on Dec 20, 2017

Subaru shares fell in the Asian trading session overnight, as the carmaker investigates an alleged fuel efficiency scandal. The Japanese car maker is already handling a vehicle inspection problem, so this additional possibility of further wrongdoing has spooked investors.

Subaru shares closed 7.06% lower at JPY3,478. Subaru shares have fallen steadily over the course of 2017. They began 2017 at JPY4,991.

Carmaker investigating publicly made claims

The claims Subaru’s fuel efficiency data aren’t exactly as they should be, were made by Japanese broadcaster, NHK, Wednesday. The report stated the carmaker may have falsified vehicle mileage readings on vehicles sold in Japan.

Those readings are used to calculate a vehicle’s fuel efficiency levels.

Subaru is now investigating those claims, in a move that comes less than 24 hours after the Japanese business promised to improve its inspections and compliance processes.

In a press release in vehicle inspection data falsification, Subaru detailed the findings of the company’s vehicle inspection process. They included:

  • Contrary to internal rules, inspectors who were not yet certified as final inspectors (“Pre-Certification Inspectors”) independently conducted final vehicle inspections.
  • Inappropriate use was made of certification seals belonging to others by Pre-Certification Inspectors.
  • Inappropriate actions were taken during internal and external audits.
  • Certification courses and certification-related trainings were inadequate.
  • Some final tests were conducted inappropriately as procedures for certification as final inspectors.

Subaru executives to return pay

During a press conference Tuesday, where Subaru’s CEO Yasuyuki Yoshinaga unveiled the findings of the investigation into its vehicle inspection scandal, he told the audience that himself and other executives would be returning a portion of their pay to Subaru.

In November, Subaru recalled 395,000 vehicles from its domestic market which included nine different models and one it manufactures for Toyota. No cars made for the foreign overseas market were affected by the incorrect inspection process.

The Subaru inspection and mileage data scandals are the latest to rock Japan. Nissan admitted earlier this year that final inspections on some vehicles weren’t conducted correctly. Meanwhile, Kobe Steel also falsified final inspection data on a number of its products.