The Consumer Affairs Agency has ordered Mitsubishi Motors Corp. to pay a fine of around ¥485 million ($4.2 million) for making false claims in sales literature about the fuel efficiency of its cars, it was announced Friday.
The order was the first of its kind under a legal revision that took force last April concerning mislabeled products. It is also the first administrative punishment meted out to scandal-hit Mitsubishi Motors for falsifying fuel-efficiency data.
“We will take this seriously and swiftly respond to it,” Mitsubishi Motors said in a statement.
Mitsubishi Motors admitted in April that it had manipulated data to make four of its minicars, including two supplied to Nissan Motor Co., appear more fuel-efficient than they actually were. The models involved later expanded greatly beyond just minicars.
MMC listed the bogus fuel economy figures in its sales catalogs and advertising.
The Consumer Affairs Agency concluded that MMC contravened the law by portraying the quality of its products as better than reality.
With Mitsubishi Motors struggling to restore a financial base damaged by multiple scandals, Nissan in October put the beleaguered automaker under its wing by buying a 34 percent stake in it.