Just as Volkswagen execs seem to have been aware of diesel emissions cheating for a great many years without actually doing anything about it, Mitsubishi execs were apparently first made aware of the company’s own fuel-economy testing fraud all the way back in 2005, according to recent reports.
This finding, which is not very surprising, from a recent investigation committee’s report was accompanied by news that a questionnaire back in 2011 saw numerous complaints from employees concerning the company’s falsification of data … which the company then proceeded to completely ignore.
Eleven years of complaints on the matter, all swept under the rug. Surely, the company must have realized that the fraud would become publicly known eventually, considering how many people knew of it, right?
Autoblog provides more: “The employee, identified in the report as F, pushed for honesty during a company workshop in February 2005, The Asahi Shimbun reports. The then-new worker told 20 company officials, including senior members of the performance testing department, that the way Mitsubishi measured fuel economy was different from the government’s method. Instead of acting on F’s protests, officials said they had no memory of them, the report claims. The four-person committee, made up of lawyers and industry experts, isn’t buying the excuse.”
Regarding that questionnaire noted above, “according to the committee’s report, Mitsubishi’s development department issued a report denying there was even a problem, which the company’s execs accepted without question.”
None of this is surprising. Corruption in the business world (and most other places as well) is pretty much a given. What is interesting about the Mitsubishi fuel-economy scandal and the Volkswagen diesel-emissions scandal, though, is how audacious they were.
Surely, someone in a position of power at one of the companies must have stopped for a moment at some point and realized that there was eventually going to be a price to pay? Or was the attitude simply that it would be some successor’s problem to deal with, and not theirs? Or perhaps those involved simply figured that they would be able to move established political levers that they had previously relied upon in order to avoid blowback?
Well, it’s anyone’s guess what goes on in the minds of auto execs.
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