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Mitsubishi president to resign over mileage scandal

Mitsubishi president Testuro Aikawa is stepping down over the mileage cheating scandal unfolding at the Japanese car maker.

Mr Aikawa has told reporters he will see through the investigation of the scandal, which surfaced last month.

He appeared with Mitsubishi chairman Osamu Masuko, who helped engineer a deal with Japanese rival Nissan, to take a 34% stake in Mitsubishi for 237 billion yen (£1.5 billion). Mitsubishi stock had plunged following the scandal.

Nissan found the faked mileage tests because of a discrepancy with its own tests on Mitsubishi-manufactured mini-car models with tiny engines that had been sold under the Nissan brand.

Mitsubishi said rigging goes back 25 years, and may involve all models, including discontinued ones.

Mr Aikawa has denied any personal involvement in the wrongdoing.

His resignation is expected to become final on June 24, upon shareholders' approval. A successor has not been announced.

Mitsubishi reiterated as part of its latest findings that top management had not ordered the mileage scam, but employees had been under pressure to get better mileage.

Mitsubishi also said it did not carefully inspect much of the mileage-testing work that was assigned to a subsidiary.

Just hours before Mr Aikawa's news conference, Japanese car manufacturer Suzuki apologised for improper road tests, but denied reports it illegally falsified mileage numbers.

Suzuki's dubious tests did not affect models sold abroad. The Japanese government had instructed all car manufacturers to check on mileage tests after the Mitsubishi scandal surfaced.

Suzuki shares fell in Tokyo trading on Wednesday amid Japanese media reports the company might have cheated on mileage, but recovered to close down at 9%.


From Belfast Telegraph