Japan's second largest auto-maker Honda says it has no plans to stop buying Bridgestone tyres in the wake of the recall, reports Bloomberg News (22/8/00).

Citing Tokyo-based spokesman Yuzuru Matsuno, the report says that while the car manufacturer is "concerned" about the brand image of Bridgestone/Firestone tyres, Honda has plans to continue to use the tyres.

Bloomberg News however reported that The Wall Street Journal - quoting Hirohide Ikeno, President of Honda R&D Americas Inc.,- was "extremely worried" about the Bridgestone/Firestone image.

While the Journal paraphrased Ikeno as saying that Honda is monitoring the Firestone tyre situation as to whether it will keep Firestone as a supplier, Ikeno - talking to Bloomberg - said that Honda has no plans to resort to another company to replace Bridgestone tyres.

Honda declined to comment as to whether the new Civics, to be released next month would feature Firestone tyres.

Japan's second largest auto-maker Toyota also said it is satisfied with Bridgestone tyres and has no realignment plans, said Bloomberg quoting a company spokesman.

Paul Molasco, spokesman for Toyota, said that the company is satisfied with Bridgestone's track record and that there would be no need to replace Bridgestone tyres. The primary concern, says Nolasco, are for Toyota customers.

Nolasco continued, saying that Toyota is open to bids for quality goods and low cost products. Toyota is also "aware" of Fuji Seiko Ltd, with its low-cost, lightweight tyres using a new design, said Nolasco.

Fuji Seiko's Technology would shorten the assembly line and by using more compact equipment, would allow a tyre-maker to reduce factory floor space by as much as 20%, says Bloomberg.

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