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Suzuki to step down as CEO, Honda to quit over fuel-testing scandal

Suzuki Motor Corp. announced Wednesday that its iconic Chairman and CEO Osamu Suzuki will step down from the post of chief executive officer after the annual shareholders’ meeting later this month.

Suzuki will step down as CEO to take responsibility for the firm’s ongoing fuel data scandal, but he will continue to serve in the role of chairman.

The embattled automaker also said Vice President Osamu Honda, who oversees the technology division, will leave his post over the scandal.

When asked why he decided to stay on as chairman, Suzuki said, “it is essential that I take responsibility and also lead the company to reform itself.”

Suzuki is a member of the founding family of the Shizuoka-based firm and has been in top management since 1978. The firm’s management is often described as authoritarian.

Suzuki also said all directors of the board will receive pay cuts and no bonuses during this fiscal year through March 2017.

Last month, the automaker reported to the transport ministry that it did not collect data related to fuel efficiency using a legally mandated method.

The regulations require automakers to have vehicles run on a road to gather data on rolling and air resistance. But Suzuki used data obtained from laboratory-style testing of individual components, such as the tires, brakes and transmission.

The firm explained that because its testing course is near the ocean it was unable to collect consistent data due to strong winds.

(Source: Japan Times )