Chinese automaker JAC Motors is being investigated for allegedly covering up emissions data, with a court hearing set for Thursday 16th May, according to local reports in China.

The Beijing Municipal Ecological Environment Bureau earlier this month said it suspected JAC of selling defective pollution control devices following an inspection.

If convicted, the Anhui-based carmaker faces heavy fines that will likely weigh heavily on the company's already weak financial performance. JAC reported a 69% decline in net profits attributable to shareholders to CNY64.6m (US$9.5m) in the first quarter of 2019.

JAC sold a little over 185,000 vehicles in China in 2018, including passenger vehicles and commercial vehicles, down by almost 16% on the previous year. Sales declined by a further 20% to 44,400 units in the first quarter of 2019.

The specific devices under investigation have not been disclosed, but it is understood to involve mainly the company's commercial vehicles.

According to local reports, this is not the first time that JAC has faced emissions fraud charges. In 2014, the automaker was found to have altered engine numbers and vehicle qualification certificates to help meet National IV emissions standards. Other domestic commercial vehicle manufacturers have also been found guilty of similar practices in the past

Auto market intelligence
from just-auto

• Auto component fitment forecasts
• OEM & tier 1 profiles & factory finder
• Analysis of 30+ auto technologies & more