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Nissan in advanced talks to buy 30% of Mitsubishi

Staff writer |
Nissan Motor is in advanced talks to take a roughly one-third stake in Mitsubishi Motors with a $1.8 billion investment, two people familiar with the matter said.

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Reuters reported two people familiar with the matter saying that. If the 200 billion yen deal goes through, Nissan, Japan's second-largest automaker by sales, would become the largest single shareholder of the much smaller Mitsubishi Motors, which admitted last month that it had supplied Nissan with mini-vehicles with overstated mileage levels.

The deal would give Nissan a bigger stake in Mitsubishi than its 15 percent holding in alliance partner Renault. The French automaker holds a 43.4 percent stake in Nissan.

The boards of Nissan and Mitsubishi Motors will meet separately on Thursday to decide investment and operational details, said the sources, one from each carmaker.

Nissan told Sky News it would not comment on a claim by Japanese broadcaster NHK that Nissan may invest more than $1.8bn in its rival.

Mitsubishi said such tampering is suspected in all of its vehicles sold in Japan.

The company has said it carried out false tests and gave inflated mileage on minicars known as "kei," whose production began in 2013, called eK wagon and eK Space light passenger cars under its own brand and Dayz and Dayz Roox that it produced for Nissan.

The company said the extent of such fraudulence was wide, possibly affecting all current and discontinued models sold in Japan. It abided by mileage-test requirements for vehicles sold abroad, it said.

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