Japan's transport minister said Tuesday it will revoke certifications necessary for mass production for three models built by Daihatsu Motor Co. after the small-car unit of Toyota Motor Co. was discovered to have rigged safety tests.

Tetsuo Saito, minister of land, infrastructure, transport and tourism, called for corrective action to prevent recurrence of similar misconduct when he met with Daihatsu President Soichiro Okudaira.

"It is a major issue concerning trust in Japan's manufacturing industry, and has shaken the foundations of our automobile certification system," Saito said at a press conference.

Tetsuo Saito, minister of land, infrastructure, transport and tourism, speaks at a press conference in Tokyo on Jan. 16, 2024. (Kyodo)

The ministry will revoke certifications for the Gran Max commercial vehicle model sold by Daihatsu, the Town Ace produced by the carmaker for Toyota and the Daihatsu-built Bongo for Mazda Motor Corp.

The revoking will be the third case in Japan following certifications canceled at Toyota's truck-manufacturing arm Hino Motors Ltd. and Toyota Industries Corp., a Toyota group forklift maker, according to the ministry.

Daihatsu is in the midst of a falsified safety tests scandal. The small-vehicle specialist halted all shipments at home and abroad in December after a third-party panel set up by the company identified improper safety tests stretching as far back as 1989.

While the ministry investigated its headquarters in Osaka Prefecture, the company decided to keep its domestic production suspended until at least the end of January.

The ministry is examining 45 models, including 27 currently manufactured and 18 older models, and will decide on the punishment with regard to the remaining 42 models.

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