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Mitsubishi rules out technical glitches on acceleration issues

(The Philippine Star) - December 1, 2015 - 9:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Japanese automaker Mitsubishi Motors Corp. is ruling out technical glitches that caused the sudden and unintended acceleration (SUA) incidents involving the Montero model.

“SUA is not possible on the Montero Sport on a technical viewpoint. There are safety checks on the Montero sport electronics and nothing on the electronics caused the SUA,” Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corp. first vice president for marketing Froilan Dytianquin said.

SUA is defined as the unintended release of fuel supply to a vehicle’s engine.

In a presentation to members of the media yesterday, Dytianquin identified four possible causes of an SUA. These are pedal entrapment, pedal misapplication, mechanical/electronic failure, and “sticky” accelerator pedal.

Dytianquin said none of these causes have been found on the 97 SUA cases of the Montero model that were reported since 2011.

He said out of 97 SUA cases, only two have not been resolved to date.

“We are open to third-party test. Any third party that can conduct technical test for this Montero, we’re open to that,” Dytianquin said.

When asked if the reported cases are therefore caused by human error, Dytianquin said: “While showing to you that the vehicles do not manifest any defect leading to SUA, of course there are still other reasons. We cannot speculate. There may be other reasons.”

Mitsubishi Montero models sold in the Philippines are produced in Thailand.

Dytianquin said among all countries where the Thailand-produced vehicles are exported, cases of SUAs are reported only in the Philippines.

Mitsubishi Philippines has sold about 88,000 units of the Montero model since its introduction in 2008.

Dytianquin said the Montero for years have accounted for more than 30 percent of Mitsubishi’s sales in the country.

“There is some delay on our phase out or depletion program because of this. As you all know, we’re introducing the all new Montero model. Given the DTI (Department of Trade and Industry) advisory to postpone the purchase until the DTI concludes its investigation, then of course that affects currently the sales. Everyone is on a wait and see attitude. But we expect that to recover of course probably after the investigation which will come probably before Christmas is over,” Dytianquin said.

The DTI, for its part, has taken steps to address the alleged incidents of SUA of the Montero.

In a memorandum order released last week, the DTI mandated for the formation of a panel to investigate on the growing number of complaints regarding the unintended acceleration cases on the Montero. The probe is set to start today.

“We will fully cooperate with the DTI investigation and of course we are opening ourselves to any third party test,” Dytianquin said.

ACIRC DEPARTMENT OF TRADE AND INDUSTRY DYTIANQUIN FROILAN DYTIANQUIN MITSUBISHI MONTERO MITSUBISHI MOTORS CORP MITSUBISHI MOTORS PHILIPPINES CORP MITSUBISHI PHILIPPINES MONTERO MONTERO SPORT SUA
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