Nissan stops all its Japanese carmaking for two weeks following probe

Oct 19, 2017   OEM

Nissan has decided to suspend vehicle production for the Japan market at all Nissan and Nissan Shatai plants in Japan, from October 19.

The suspension of production is needed to reconfigure final inspection lines, the company said in a statement.

As previously announced, on September 18 the Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transportation (MLIT) notified Nissan that in the final vehicle inspection process, certain checks were carried out by technicians not properly registered to perform those duties under Nissan's own processes. Nissan took corrective measures at Japanese production plants by September 20 to address the issue. By October 18, the investigation team (led by a third party) discovered that at its Oppama, Tochigi and the Nissan Kyushu plants, certain parts of the final inspection process were still being carried out by technicians not properly registered to perform those duties for vehicles for the Japan market, CEO Hiroto Saikawa said at a press conference at its Yokohama headquarters on October 19.

Findings

The plants transferred final vehicle inspection check items from the final vehicle inspection line to other lines, such as the "marketability inspection" and the "offline inspection".
As a result, employees who were not internally registered as final vehicle inspectors performed final vehicle inspections.

Measures planned

Nissan will take the following actions with regard to the production line and vehicles that did not meet Japanese market requirements for final inspection:

Production lines in the plants

The final vehicle inspection line will be configured as originally submitted to MLIT, consolidating all final inspection processes.
Final inspection process will be separated from other processes and only internally registered final vehicle inspectors will have access to the final inspection line.

Unregistered and registered vehicles

Nissan is considering re-inspecting the unregistered vehicles at certified Nissan dealership facilities throughout Japan.
Nissan is considering submitting a noncompliance recall report for registered vehicles.
Approximately 34,000 vehicles produced between September 20 – October 18, 2017 including those produced for other makers will be subject to re-inspection.

Historical recalls

In addition, Nissan is recalling 1.16 million cars made and sold in Japan between January 2014 and September 2017 for inspection, after the government found uncertified inspectors approved vehicle quality at its domestic plants. The recall is likely to cost the company 25 billion yen ($222 million) and is the first major challenge for Saikawa, who took over the Nissan CEO position from Carlos Ghosn in April 2017.

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