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Japan's Transport Ministry searches offices at Mazda, Honda

The Honda logo is seen at the 2013 North American International Auto Show at the Cobo Center in Detroit, on January 14, 2013. Honda's offices were searched by Japan's Transport Ministry on Monday. File Photo by Mark Cowan/UPI
The Honda logo is seen at the 2013 North American International Auto Show at the Cobo Center in Detroit, on January 14, 2013. Honda's offices were searched by Japan's Transport Ministry on Monday. File Photo by Mark Cowan/UPI | License Photo

June 10 (UPI) -- Japan's Transport Ministry searched the offices of Mazda Motor Corp. and Honda Motor Corp. on Monday as part of its massive investigation into falsification of government certification applications.

The probes follow similar visits government officials made at Toyota and two other automobile companies as inspectors looked for irregularities in testing data of a swath of brands in its crackdown on fake certification data from the companies.

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After conducting high-stakes investigations, the ministry said it would determine how to meter out punishment.

Federal investigators investigated Toyota's offices last Tuesday, the Yamaha Motor Co. on Wednesday and Suzuki Motor Corp. on Thursday.

The companies, some of the top automakers in Japan, found during in-house investigations such issues as rewritten test data and manipulation of test vehicles. The investigations were sparked by initial examinations at Daihatsu Motor Co. and Toyota.

Honda said the investigation is looking at 22 past models from 2009 to 2017 for falsifying data evidence, but all of those models have been discontinued.

Following a shipment ban ordered by the Transport Ministry, Mazda and Toyota stopped the production of five models last week.

The Transport Ministry called for 85 auto companies and their suppliers to be investigated over government certification issues after numerous scandals hit Toyota in 2022 and beyond. Toyota said its certification issues involved data in pedestrian and occupant protection tests along with errors found in crash tests involving discontinued models.

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