S.Korea fines BMW, Porsche for false data on 10 models

Seoul: South Korea on Monday said that it has imposed a fine of 7.1 billion won (around $5.8 million) on BMW, Porsche and Nissan car manufacturers for falsifying data for the sale permits of ten models.

The South Korean Ministry of Environment announced that besides imposing economic sanctions on the local units of the companies, it has cancelled certificates of the vehicles after detecting irregularities in the documents, the Yonhap news agency reported.

Nissan Korea, the South Korean unit of the Japanese company, is suspected of submitting the report from Mercedes Benz for its model Infiniti Q50 and that from Renault for Qashqai.

In the case of BMW, Seoul suspects that test results submitted for its model X5M actually correspond to X6M.

The local unit of the German company explained that some results of X6M were included in the reports as both models have the same engine and are under the same certification number, thus qualifying them to share the test results, according to the ministry.

Similarly, the local unit of Porsche is accused of fabricating emissions test results, something that the German company voluntarily informed the authorities during the course of the investigation, added the ministry.

The South Korean government has urged prosecutors to formally investigate Nissan and despite imposing fines, has decided not to conduct an official enquiry into the German companies considering BMW’s violation was minor and Porsche’s collaborative attitude.

The ministry also said that it would reinforce its certification system to prevent similar irregularities in the future.