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Mitsubishi 'cheated on mileage by up to 16%'

The Japanese government has said car giant Mitsubishi overstated the mileage on its vehicles by up to 16%.

The transport ministry said its own mileage tests had looked into cheating by the automaker on its minicar models, tiny cars eligible for tax breaks in Japan.

Tokyo-based Mitsubishi Motors acknowledged recently it had systematically inflated mileage for eK minicar models, as well as some others. But it has insisted it did not lie on mileage on models sold abroad.

Last month, Nissan took a 34% stake in Mitsubishi, promising to help effect a turnaround in the firm's fortunes. Under a special agreement, Mitsubishi had supplied the models to Nissan, which does not make its own minicars.

Nissan's own tests had uncovered the mileage cheating.

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