Japanese automobile giant Toyota announced on Monday that it was suspending deliveries of ten models of diesel vehicles, due to irregularities identified in the certification of their engines, produced by its subsidiary Toyota Industries. The group gave the names of these ten models but did not specify the sales volume that they represent. Among these imposing vehicles, some of which are sold in both Asia, Europe and the Middle East (but none in North America) are the Hilux pickup, the Land Cruiser 300 4x4, the Fortuner and LX500d SUVs.
This is a new embarrassing affair for the world number one automobile manufacturer, already entangled in a vast scandal of rigged tests by another of its subsidiaries, Daihatsu, whose production has been suspended since December. In March 2023, Toyota Industries had already announced that irregularities had been committed in the certifications relating to the emissions of its forklifts and construction equipment, one of its core businesses, leading to a recall of the affected products in Japan.
An independent investigation has now confirmed that three diesel engines produced by Toyota Industries for automobiles were also affected by irregularities of the same type. During certification tests, the power of the three diesel engines in question was measured by software different from that used for their mass production, so that the values obtained for their certifications had "less variations", explains Toyota in a communicated. Toyota at the same time assures that the affected engines and vehicles “meet performance standards” and therefore there is no need to stop using them.
Also read: The Tesla Y was the best-selling car in the world in 2023, a first for an electric car
However, at the request of the Ministry of Transport, Toyota Industries on Monday “temporarily” stopped shipments of the engines concerned, and therefore Toyota those of vehicle models equipped with these engines. “We recognize the seriousness of the fact that the repeated certification irregularities at TICO (Toyota Industries Corporation, Editor's note), after those at Daihatsu, have shaken the very foundations of the company as an automobile manufacturer,” Toyota said in its press release. .
The group promised to provide “detailed explanations” to the Japanese authorities on this new scandal and to quickly take “appropriate” measures. The Japanese Ministry of Transport has indicated that it will carry out its own inspection of Toyota Industries to verify the facts of the independent report and ensure that standards will now be respected.
This new scandal did not prevent Toyota shares from rising significantly on Monday on the Tokyo Stock Exchange (3.14%). That of Toyota Industries, on the other hand, fell by 4%.