Nissan suspends auto production for Japan over final checks

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The company said it had chose to suspend production for about a fortnight at six plants in Japan as a result of the crisis.

Nissan said it took corrective measures at its production plants by 20 September to address the issue.

Nissan's recently revealed misconduct in its final inspection procedures is another blow to the "Made in Japan" reputation, which is also being damaged by Kobe Steel's data falsification scandal.

Vehicles earmarked for export will not be affected as the violations involve only domestic inspection requirements, the company said.

As a result, employees who were not internally registered as final vehicle inspectors performed final vehicle inspections.

During the downtime at its Japanese plants, the company is reconfiguring the inspection lines at each.

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Nissan now plans to reconfigure the vehicle inspection line as originally submitted to MLIT, consolidating all final inspection processes.

However, as this process is unique to Japanese-market Nissans no vehicles shipped to other markets are expected to be subject to the recall. Specifically, the company has to inspect the steering-radius, braking and acceleration of each vehicle.

It is considering re-inspecting the unregistered vehicles at dealers throughout Japan, and submitting a noncompliance recall report for registered vehicles. "But we are having to take (new measures) in order to stop old habits that had been part of our routine operations at the factories". Around 34,000 were produced between September 20 and October 18, and 4,000 of those have already been sold. "The investigation team will continue to thoroughly investigate the issue and determine measures to prevent recurrence".

On Thursday, Nissan announced that improper inspections continued at another three plants despite the preventive measures being put in place. "Details of the above will be included in the final report to be published on a later date", the statement added.

To recap, Japan's transport ministry had discovered that uncertified technicians at Nissan plants were using the stamps of certified technicians to sign off on final vehicle inspections, in violation of ministry guidelines.

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