Published on July 12th, 2021 | by Joshua Chin0
Mitsubishi Pays RM 125 Million Fine Over Emissions Fraud
It seems VW isn’t the only one, as Mitsubishi is wrapped up in its own Dieselgate problems too.
Well it appears that it ain’t just the Germans who have been caught doing dirty deeds with diesel, as Mitsubishi too has recently embroiled in its own scandal regarding its oil-burners. All of which culminated in the Japanese automaker having confirmed recently that it paid a €25 million fine (RM 125 million) issued by German prosecutors over emissions fraud allegations earlier this year.
Rather interestingly however, the fine came amidst an investigation that apparently found no evidence of Mitsubishi having ‘knowingly or wilfully’ committed emissions fraud. In fact, Frankfurt prosecutors had publicly admitted that it didn’t actually manage to identify any fraudulent behaviour performed by the automaker during its nearly year-long investigation.
To further add intrigue to this case too, a spokeswoman for the Frankfurt prosecutors stated that the fine payment by Mitsubishi has put an end to the investigation into the alleged fraud. The Japanese automaker has also confirmed that the €25 million fine was promptly paid when it was handed to them in late March, and has not since brought an appeal over the fine notice.
Now just to give a bit of bit of background to this investigation, German authorities opened the emissions fraud investigation into Mitsubishi late last year that revolved around its 1.6-litre and 2.2-litre diesel engines. Both these oil-burners were given Germany’s highest highest Euro 5 and Euro 6 emissions ratings, but prosecutors suspected that they were equipped with shut-down devices to make them appear less polluting in lab tests than they actually are in the real world.
As part of the probe, German investigators had raided 10 sites belonging to the automaker last year. These raids that were conducted involved several Mitsubishi dealerships in Germany, as well as its European research and development facilities based in the country too.
Getting back to the topic of Mitsubishi being apparently fined but not committing a crime though, this could stem from the fact that these two diesel engines in question were supplied by the Groupe PSA for use in the Japanese automaker’s European models. Unfortunately, the investigation did not publicly reveal as to which party installed the defeat device. Or whether or not it was actually fitted to the cars in the first place.
What is known however is that Mitsubishi is just the latest in a long line of automakers to have been implicated in one way or another in the wider Dieselgate scandal, which was kicked off by VW back in 2018. It is worth highlighting too that this isn’t also actually the first time that the tri-diamond marque has been caught committing fuel-related fraud, with it admitting to falsifying fuel economy figures for some of its models back in 2016.