Honda’s consolidated net income for the fiscal third quarter ended December 31, 2002 increased 40% year on year to 115.1 billion yen ($US961 million), the company said in a statement released on Friday.

Unit sales in all Honda’s business categories – motorcycles, cars and power products – increased for the fiscal third quarter and consolidated net sales and other operating revenue 1,989.2 billion yen ($16,591 million), a year-on-year increase of 13.3%.

Revenue included currency translation effects, which had a positive impact on foreign currency denominated revenue from Honda’s overseas subsidiaries translated into yen. Honda estimates that had the exchange rate of the yen remained unchanged from the same period in 2001, revenue for the quarter would have increased by approximately 13%.

Consolidated operating income for the fiscal third quarter totalled 158.9 billion yen ($1,326 million), a year-on-year increase of 2.7%. This increase in operating income was due mainly to higher revenue from every product category, ongoing cost cutting strategies together with the depreciation of the yen, which offset the negative impact from increases in selling, general and administrative expenses as well as research and development expenses.

Consolidated income before income taxes for the quarter totalled 158.7 billion yen (S1,324 million), a year-on-year increase of 31.7%.
Motorcycle unit sales in the third quarter increased 39.6% to 2,145,000 units, and revenue increased 6.9%, to 217.2 billion yen ($1,812 million). These increases were due primarily to higher sales in Asian countries such as Thailand, China, Indonesia and India.

Car unit sales increased 7.7% to 702,000 units, due primarily to strong sales of such light truck models as the Pilot, CR-V and Odyssey in North America. Revenue increased 14.6%, to 1,637.4 billion yen ($13,657 million) during the quarter.

Revenue from other businesses, including power products and financial services, increased 7.9% to 134.5 billion yen ($1,122 million) due mainly to higher revenue from financial services led by favourable car sales in North America.

Honda’s consolidated net income for the fiscal nine months ended December 31, 2002 increased 21% to 309.9 billion yen ($2,585 million).