Nissan joins long line of emission scandals

16:23 | 12/07/2018
Customers’ belief in giant car manufacturers is once again shaken as Nissan is caught up in another emission fraud scandal, after on July 2 it admitted falsifying emission tests on 19 models offered in Japan.
nissan joins long line of emission scandals
Nissan's 1,200 vehicles use emissins-cheating software. Photo: nissan.com.vn

Reuters quoted Nissan’s representative as saying that it had found that most of its factories in Japan used emissions-cheating software on their vehicles and submitted inspections reports based on altered measurements.

“This is a deep and serious issue for our company,” chief operating officer Yasuhiro Yamauchi told reporters at a briefing.

The latest misconduct does not impact vehicles exported overseas, as it only was discovered in tests for requirements intended specifically for the Japanese market, the representative said.

The issue was discovered during a voluntary compliance check following last year’s scandal at Nissan. Accordingly, affected models include the Note and Juke SUV. About 2,200 sample tests performed at six plants producing Nissan vehicles, and 1,200 vehicles at five locations showed some form of falsification.

Countries with the world’s leading environmental standards like Japan or European countries, have been issuing ever-higher emissions requirements for car manufacturers. Therefore, in recent years, many technologies reducing emissions such as Hybrid, EcoBoost, and Canter E-cell Zero CO2, have been developed to meet green demand.

However, to avoid expenses on technologies, automakers have used many ways to falsify their vehicles’ emissions levels to meet the export markets’ requirements.

Emission fraud was first discovered at German automaker Volkswagen in 2015. Accordingly, Volkswagen was found to have purposely programmed its turbocharged direct injection (TDI) diesel engines to activate emission controls only during laboratory emissions testing, which lowered the vehicles’ NOx (a generic term for the nitrogen oxides that are most relevant for air pollution, namely nitric oxide (NO) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2)) output to meet US standards during regulatory testing, while during normal driving the cars emitted up to 40 times more NOx.

Audi CEO arrested over Volkswagen emissions scandal Emission fraud plagues famous German car makers

After the violation came to light, the German automaker had to pay a fine of $18 billion in the US, and spent $8 billion recalling vehicles equipped with the violating software.

On June 18, Rupert Stadler—CEO of Volkswagen’s Audi division—was arrested over the scandal.

After Volkswagen, Mercedes-Benz and BMW were caught red-handed as well. In an announcement on July 22 last year, the European Commission (EC) confirmed to the German Der Spiegel magazine that it has been investigating frequent meetings among the car brands’ representatives to agree on technical specifications on grips, engines, and emission systems.

The magazine also stated that there has been an unspoken agreement between the sides since 1990.

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