Hino  has been hit with potential class actions  set to be launched by two Australian law firms claiming to represent local owners against the Toyota subsidiary, which has admitted to falsifying emission and fuel consumption data on up to 860,000 vehicles.

Bannister Law  says it  is trying to see if Hino has breached the Road Vehicle Standards Act 2018 and the Motor Vehicle Standards Act 1989 and is considering launching a class action.

Separately, Gerard Malouf & Partners (GMP Law)  said  that it started a class action proceeding against Hino in the Supreme Court of Victoria o 20th September.

In March, Hino  said it had identified misconduct “related to the certification procedures for multiple engine models subject to the 2016 emissions regulations called the ‘post-post-new long-term regulations’ and  the fuel economy standards in Japan and found problems in engine performance”.

Hino  also said at that time that it would “carefully examine the impact in terms of the tax benefits it receives for the emissions and fuel economy performance of vehicles equipped with these engines”.

“Hino will bear the cost of any additional tax payments that may be required,” the Hino statement said.

It will be interesting to see what evidence the law firms produce given that the apparent cheating was mainly to. gain some tax benefits  in Hino’s home country and the fraud may not have any affect on the performance or user experience with the trucks in this country.

Hino Australia has told some media outlets that it acknowledged the statement of claim filed in the Supreme Court of Victoria but
reiterated  in a statement that the reported misconduct concerning engine certification in Japan “relates to the certification process and does not affect the driveability of the affected vehicles and raises no vehicle safety concerns”.

The company also said that it would continue to work with dealers and customers around the issues and would engage with the relevant authorities in Australia.

Satoshi Ogiso  the  global president of Hino  publicly apologised  in September for the scandal and said the company’s management took its responsibilities and public image seriously.

Hino said  that it deeply apologised that it, as a company supporting the social infrastructure of people and goods, has violated Japanese laws and regulations and, by doing so, betrayed the trust of its customers and other stakeholders.

“Hino will treat this correction order with the utmost seriousness, and will develop and implement comprehensive remedial measures in response, continuously improve and strengthen such measures, and establish a corporate culture and governance to prevent the recurrence of misconduct in the future.”

Hino Australia has said that  it has voluntarily suspended imports and deliveries of 500 Series Standard Cab FC, FD, and FE vehicles and Poncho buses to dealers
and is currently not accepting any new orders for the affected vehicles pending the outcome of  its parent company’s engagement with the authorities in Japan.

“Hino is committed to working with dealers and customers about these issues and engaging with the relevant authorities in Australia,” the company said in its statement.