US: Honda brand targets 115,000 April sales
Honda Motor plans to sell 115,000 Honda-branded cars and light trucks in the US market in April, a person familiar with the company's plans has said, a total that could be limited by its declining stock of vehicles at dealers.
According to the Wall Street Journal (WSJ), in a note to US dealers, company officials said the sales goal of 115,000 vehicles would represent about a 12% year on year sales increase and a 5% decline from the 121,039 Honda-brand cars and trucks sold in March. Automakers typically report slightly lower new vehicle sales in April than in March, but this year April is a month with five weekends which are when most auto purchasing takes place.
The note didn't say how many Acura vehicles the company hopes to sell.
Honda, like other Japanese automakers, has been left with tight supplies of models that are made in Japan and exported to the US, the WSJ noted. Its supply of vehicles made in North America could also be strained because the company has had to stop production at some North American plants because of shortages of parts that come from Japan.
"Due to the delays in Japan production and the temporary suspension of domestic production we know the vehicle pipeline will be affected," the company said in the note, according to the WSJ source familiar with the company's plans. But since the company will be producing vehicles in its North American plants, and expects to restart its Japanese auto plants by 11 April, the company told dealers they cannot "lose focus on our April sales objectives."
At the end of March, the Honda brand had 208,961 vehicles in dealer stocks in the US, according to Autodata. At the current rate of sales, that's enough to last 47 days. It had a 56-day supply at the end of February and a 64-day supply a year ago, the WSJ added.