TOKYO -- Mitsubishi Motors expects to post a net loss this financial year over its mileage-cheating scandal, hurt by compensation costs and a slide in vehicle sales, Kyodo news agency reported today, without citing sources.
The automaker said last week it planned to give owners of four minivehicles close to $1,000 in compensation for its overstating of mileage readings, part of reimbursement costs that will total at least $600 million.
Mitsubishi has said it expects a charge of 50 billion yen ($480 million) this business year due to compensation costs.
Asked to comment on the report, Mitsubishi CEO Osamu Masuko said today that the company would seek to contain the cost of the scandal in this financial year, but he did not say whether that would drag it into the red.
"[The scandal] will likely hurt us this year, and the extent to which we can recover from it, will depend up on how well we can leverage our synergies with Nissan," he said.
The automaker in April admitted to overstating the mileage on four of its minivehicles, including two models it produced for Nissan Motor Co.
The scandal, which the company has blamed on pressure to deliver competitive readings and poor supervision of testing processes, has led to plans for Nissan to take a one-third controlling stake in the embattled automaker.
Separately, Japan's government said sales of Mitsubishi vehicles with overstated mileage levels could resume.
Government tests had showed that fuel economy for the minivehicles was on average 11 percent lower than their advertised readings but the transport ministry said that this would not lead to change in their vehicle classification.