Photo/Illutration Satoshi Ogiso, president of Hino Motors Ltd., speaks at an online news conference on Aug. 22. (Naoyuki Fukuda)

Hino Motors Ltd. said it has suspended domestic shipments of small trucks after learning that engine-test data was falsified for those vehicles as well--the latest misconduct revelations in an ongoing scandal.

The company announced on Aug. 22 that it suspended all shipments of its Hino Dutro light commercial trucks equipped with the engine in question.

This widens the ongoing data-tampering scandal, where gas emissions and fuel economy data were fabricated for a wide range of vehicles over many years, to include most of its vehicles sold in Japan.

Hino Motors President Satoshi Ogiso apologized at a news conference.

“This is a serious and grave matter, and there is no excuse for it,” he said.

Hino Motors said it had submitted exhaust emissions performance data for the vehicle engines based on only one test, even though it is supposed to conduct two tests.

As of the end of July, 76,694 units were equipped with this engine, according to the company.

The transport ministry uncovered the misconduct after Hino Motors’ own third-party panel had failed to discover it.

Around 27,000 units of the Dutro were sold in Japan in fiscal 2021.

Shipments for all truck models carrying engines made by the company have now been halted for the Japanese market, including the large and midsize trucks that had already been suspended.

But the company said it will continue to ship models with engines manufactured by Toyota Motor Corp.

The testing misconduct at Hino Motors is believed to have started around 2003 across a wide range of models.

On Aug. 2, the company announced it has acknowledged test data was faked for 12 kinds of engines installed in large and midsize vehicles.

The latest discovery has expanded the total vehicles affected to around 640,000 units.