Honda Motor Co. didn’t suffer as badly as other carmakers during the economic crisis as it was able to avoid full-year losses; however, its recovery has not been as sharp too.
Through September, American Honda's sales increased by only 3%, compared with the 10% increase for the US market as a whole. Its market share contracted to 10.6%, from 11.3% a year ago.
Honda Motor CEO Takanobu Ito claims that its new products, led by the redesigned Odyssey minivan, will have above-average growth in 2011. For the next two years, Honda will offer a set of new technologies.
This includes a hybrid system for mid-sized to large vehicles, an electric car and a small clean diesel drivetrain. Honda will also begin overhauling gasoline engines and transmissions.
At Honda's headquarters in Tokyo, Ito talked to Asia Editor Hans Greimel about the latest technology drive, the positioning of the Acura brand and his market outlook. Ito said that its sales are slightly below its initial expectations.
Honda said that in 2011, it expects a boost from the new Odyssey that launched this fall in the US. He admitted that the biggest reason its sales are slightly behind is because of Hyundai’s growth, the Sonata in particular.
He said that to compete with that, Honda intends to make the Accord and Civic more appealing. Honda anticipates that by next year, it will be able to increase its sales above the market average. [via autonews - sub. required]