Pilots flying the same plane a day earlier had experienced a similar problem, en route from Denpasar, Bali to Jakarta, until they used switches to shut off the system and used manual controls to fly and stabilise the plane, KNKT said.
But Utomo said that it was still "too early to conclude" whether this issue with the system was a contributing factor to the fatal crash, Reuters reported.
One of the victims' family are suing Boeing, and accuse the aircraft manufacturer of failing to inform the pilots of the new anti-stalling feature on its 737 Max plane system that could "push the nose down unexpectedly".
A feature in previous 737 models that allowed pilots to manually override an "electric trimming" process - which automatically budges the nose downward to prevent a stall, does not work in Boeing's 737 MAX 8 planes, Boeing explained in a November 7 bulletin.
During pre-flight check, the Captain of the October 28, 2018, Denpasar-Jakarta flight had discussed with Lion Air's maintenance on what had been performed on the plane, including the replacement of an AoA sensor. It is activated when angle of attack (AOA) sensors indicate that the airframe is in a dangerously high angle and attempts to correct it by pushing the plane nose down.
After the aircraft's flaps retracted following takeoff, the automatic trim problem noted on the previous night's flight returned, until the flight data recorder stopped recording when the plane crashed.
The report itself does not state that the plane was not airworthy, but it did outline technical problems with the plane, including an issue with the plane's automated anti-stall system.
The investigators recommended that Lion Air ensure it follows proper operating procedures to improve its "safety culture and to enable the pilot to make proper decisions" and that it ensure it keeps proper, full documentation on flights and maintenance issues.
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However, during flight JT610, the plane's automatic anti-stalling system repeatedly forced the plane's nose down, even when the plane was not stalling - possibly due to a faulty sensor.
Nurcahyo Utomo told reporters at the launch of a preliminary report into the crash that Lion Air should never have let it fly.
The lack of the aircraft's cockpit voice recorder, which is still missing, is a dire obstacle to resolving that mystery, the investigators said.
Boeing said that action was part of well-established protocols for all 737s.
"There were four flights that experienced problems with the airspeed indicator", Tjahjono said.
The MAX aircraft that crashed is the latest version of Boeing's popular 737 jetliner.
Indonesian investigators determine the downed 737 jet was "not airworthy"; Greg Palkot reports on the findings. Because the MAX aircraft have heavier engines, the center of gravity is biased more forward than on previous models and MCAS is meant to improve pitch feel and provide stall protection.
Nurcahyo Utomo, aviation head at the National Transport Safety Committee, told the BBC that "several problems occurred simultaneously" during the flight, including problems with measuring air speed and altitude, and with the stick shaker.
The company now faces lawsuits from victim's families, while Indonesian authorities will continue to work with US agencies as part of an ongoing joint investigation.