Government targets Honda in latest onsite probe into safety tests

Japan's transport ministry sent a team of investigators to the offices of Honda Motor as part of a probe into falsification of vehicle road and safety test data.

Honda joins three other vehicle makers that have received visits by ministry officials in the spreading investigation.

The transport ministry team of five officials entered Honda's headquarters in Tokyo on Monday.

The ministry says Honda ran irregular noise tests on 22 past models. The weight of the cars is also said to have exceeded specified ranges, which was not reflected in test reports.

In addition, the ministry says the company falsified data in engine output tests on some models.

The ministry plans to further investigate Honda's test data, which is used to obtain vehicle road and safety certification, and internal management policies.

Officials will interview employees who were involved in the tests, as well as executives.

Honda is the fourth vehicle maker to be inspected by the government over irregular test data. The other three are Toyota, Yamaha and Suzuki.

Besides these companies, Mazda on June 3rd also reported irregularities in vehicle performance tests.