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Posts Tagged ‘Honda crv’

Honda Reveals New 2015 CR-V

New cute-ute hits showrooms in October.

by on Sep.22, 2014

Honda will have more to say -- and show -- about the new CR-V next week.

Honda is giving us a first look at its 2015 CR-V – but not much more – hinting it will have plenty of details to reveal later this month.

But some significant details have already leaked out about this mid-cycle update of one of the U.S. market’s best-selling products, the 2015 Honda CR-V set to go on sale at the beginning of October. Beyond the cosmetic changes, the new CUV is expected to get a new 2.4-liter engine that, when paired with a new automatic gearbox, should deliver a solid bump in fuel economy.

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Honda clearly needs to keep the little crossover on the top of its game considering the hefty competition in the compact CUV segment, with buyers offered alternatives as diverse as the Toyota RAV-4, the Nissan Rogue, the Mazda CX-5, and other options from the U.S. and South Korea.

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Honda Claims Retail Sales Leadership

Why a sale isn't always a sale.

by on Nov.22, 2013

The Honda Accord lags slightly behind the Toyota Camry - but it leads its segment if you look only at retail sales.

“A sale isn’t always a sale,” or so says John Mendel, the top American executive at Honda, which has long steered clear of the daily rental and other fleet sales that prop up many of its competitors’ sales charts.

Honda has traditionally focused its marketing efforts on the retail side of the market and there, it claims, it has been gaining ground. In fact, the Japanese brand claims to now be the retail sales leader in four of the largest non-truck segments in the U.S. auto market with the midsize Civic, compact Accord, Odyssey minivan and CR-V crossover.

The Last Word!

Those powerhouse product lines helped Honda achieve a 16.2% increase in retail sales for the first nine months of 2013, while capturing a 16.1% share of the American market. During the same period in 2012, Honda held a 15.8% share of the retail market.

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Nissan Introduces Redesigned 2014 Rogue Crossover

Flexibility, safety, technology make it maker’s second-biggest seller.

by on Sep.10, 2013

The Nissan Rogue is the company's second-best selling vehicle.

Nissan offered up the first glimpse of the 2014 Nissan Rogue, which goes on sale in November and is one of the first of two vehicles built off a common architecture that will be used both by Nissan and its French partner Renault. The automaker debuted the new crossover in both Frankfurt, Germany and at its technical center in Farmington Hills, Mich.

Scott Shirley, marketing manager, said the new Rogue was designed specifically to compete with vehicles such as  the Toyota RAV4, the Ford Escape and Honda CRV in what is considered one of the fastest growing segments in the automobile industry.

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The compact crossover segment has grown rapidly in recent years and is expected to continue growing beyond is current level of 1.8 million units annually, added Shirley, who said the base price for the new Rogue is $22,490. (more…)

Honda Cuts Shipments of Cars from Japan to U.S.

Maker losing money on models like Fit, CR-Z, Insight.

by on Jun.12, 2012

Honda plans to export the Fit subcompact from China to Canada -- at least temporarily.

Honda is cutting exports of the Japanese-made Fit to U.S. dealers because of lopsided exchange rates.

Crushed by lopsided dollar/yen exchange rates, Honda is cutting back on exports from Japan to the U.S., even though that will curb potential sales and market share growth, the maker’s CEO says.

The maker hopes to offset those reductions by ramping up production in the U.S. and other parts of North America.  Honda recently broke ground in Mexico for a new plant that will supply American dealers with the subcompact Fit and possibly other products.

“Under the current exchange rate of 80 yen per dollar, our export business doesn’t make any profit,” Honda Motor Co. CEO Fumihiko Ike told the trade publication Automotive News. “Definitely, the absolute number of exports to the United States will be decreasing.”

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Honda is by no means the only Japanese maker to curb exports to the U.S. as a result of the weak dollar.  And European makers, including BMW and Audi, have also curtailed exports due to lopsided exchange rates – though with the Euro sliding the gap has narrowed in recent weeks for German and other Continental manufacturers.

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First Drive: 2013 Ford Escape

The hands-free tailgate is a real "kick."

by on May.08, 2012

Ford's new 2013 Escape shares the same underlying platform as the maker's latest Focus line.

The compact crossover segment is today one of the biggest and most competitive segments in the American market, with entries ranging from the Toyota RAV4 to the Chevrolet Equinox.  Ford’s offering, the Escape, has always been a solid and reliable performer, and one of the segment’s best-sellers.  But if you were looking for refinement, charm and comfort, well, you’d be advised to look elsewhere.

Until now, anyway.  The maker has an all-new version of the Escape in the pipeline for 2013, and after spending a full week behind the wheel we’ve discovered that it maintains the flexibility and functionality that buyers have long expected while delivering the sort of creature comforts and driving dynamics that one could only hope for.

Such a Deal!

Better yet, the 2013 Ford Escape also scores with a new powertrain line-up that can haul and tow with the best in its class even while delivering significantly better mileage than before.

The redesigned 2013 Ford Escape is more than just an update.  The maker has redesigned the crossover from the ground up, and like the 2012 Ford Explorer, Escape has migrated to a new unibody platform that it now shares with the nimble Ford Focus and soon-to-launch C-Max people mover.

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First Look: 2013 Ford Escape

From boxy to beautiful?

by on Nov.16, 2011

The 2012 Ford Escape migrates to a more rounded, crossover design.

Beauty is clearly in the eyes of the beholder, and seldom is that more true than in the automotive market, where fiery debates can break out over even the smallest design details.

So expect some fierce disputes when the subject turns to the new 2013 Ford Escape, which is making its debut at the L.A. Auto Show this week.  Following in the tread marks of the bigger Ford Explorer, the new Escape is migrating from its traditionally boxy, truck-like shape to a more lithe, car-like silhouette that Ford hopes will move it to the center of the fast-growing compact crossover segment.

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That transformation could prove particularly well-timed as Ford has grabbed the top spot in the small ute niche – taking advantage of the production cuts suffered by long-term segment leader the Honda CR-V due to the earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan last March.  Honda is rushing to get its plants back up to speed as it rolls out a replacement for its own “cute-ute,” which had led the market since its 1996 launch.

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Honda Planning Major Redesign of New Civic

Subcompact hammered by critics.

by on Nov.01, 2011

Honda will race a redesign of the much-criticized new Civic to market ASAP.

It has not been a very good year, according to John Mendel, Honda of America’s top U.S. executive. Not only has the maker been hammered by a series of production cuts – the latest the result of flooding in Thailand – but one of its most important products has received a critical drubbing from the media and a tepid response from potential buyers.

That will send the maker’s designers and engineers back to work to come up with a significant “refresh” of the 2012 Honda Civic, reports Automotive News, which should be ready to go to market in time for the 2013 model-year.

“We take feedback seriously, regardless of who it’s from, and we will act accordingly quickly,” John Mendel, American Honda executive vice president, said in an interview in San Diego, where the maker is revealing another critical new model, the 2012 Honda CR-V.

Inside News!

Suggesting the maker is “appropriately energized,” Mendel said Honda is hoping to act as quickly as possible to address criticism of the latest-generation Civic.  The question is how much can be done in short order.  The 2012 version of the compact Civic was the result of a 6-year gestation and normally Honda spends at least three years to develop a mid-cycle update.

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Ford Dropping Escape Hybrid and Adding EcoBoost

Maker claims new 1.6-liter EcoBoost will outperform old hybrid - and deliver better mileage.

by on Oct.05, 2011

The redesigned Ford Escape will no longer offer a hybrid package - but will have two available EcoBoost options.

Ford will drop the Escape Hybrid when it launches an all-new version of its popular utility vehicle next year, turning to a high-mileage alternative using a new 1.6-liter version of its EcoBoost engine family.

The Escape Hybrid, though heralded as the first use of gas-electric technology in an SUV, has been selling at a sluggish rate in recent years.  So, Derrick Kuzak, Ford’s group vice president of Global Product Development, says the hybrid powertrain will be shifted to a newer people-mover in the Ford line-up, the upcoming C-Max Hybrid, that should be 25% more fuel-efficient than the outgoing Escape Hybrid.

The next-generation Escape, which will migrate to a more crossover-like design and platform, will be officially unveiled at the LA Auto Show next month.  It will come with a 4-cyliner EcoBoost engine rather than a V6 engine, Ford confirmed during a background session.

In the Know!

“Customers are prioritizing fuel economy above every other trait when they make most vehicle purchases,” said Kuzak. “Ford is meeting people’s needs by offering a family of fuel-efficient vehicles – from hybrids to electrics to traditional gasoline-powered cars – packed with class-leading technology, giving customers both exciting and greener driving choices.”

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First Look: Honda CR-V Concept

Cute ute finally ready after 3-month delay.

by on Sep.22, 2011

The fourth-generation Honda CR-V makes its belated debut - albeit in "concept" form.

Honda’s cute ute is finally taking its bows, the 2012 CR-V delayed by about three months due to the March disaster in Japan that set all that country’s makers on their ears.

The CR-V has been one of Honda’s strongest sellers over the years – besting the likes of the Toyota RAV-4 and Ford Escape to top the compact SUV charts for the last four years in a row — and the maker is betting it will remain a solid contender going forward.  It will need a hit.  Honda has taken some unexpected lumps, in recent months, the new 2012 Civic slammed by critics that included the influential Consumer Reports magazine.

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Officially, the 2012 Honda CR-V making its debut at the Orange Country International Auto Show today is just a concept vehicle, but it “strongly hints at the more dynamic and refined look of the upcoming model,” proclaimed John Mendel, the maker’s top U.S. executive.

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First Look: 2012 Honda CR-V

Updated cute-ute delayed by Japanese shortages.

by on Jul.25, 2011

A new look for the 2012 Honda CR-V.

Honda’s “cute-ute” is getting a new look.  The ever-popular CR-V will take a distinctly different design direction when it makes its debut in the U.S. market by the end of the year, the company has revealed with the first formal shot of the fourth-generation crossover-utility vehicle.

Routinely a best-seller in the compact crossover market, the 2012 Honda CR-V will feature a more buff and sculpted appearance, with less visual emphasis on the cute and more on the ute.  Overall, the image suggests a slightly larger vehicle with headlights more smoothly integrated into the fenders and a new take on the three-bar grille.

The higher bumper and built-in skid plate would suggest Honda has integrated some SUV-like off-road capabilities.

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Officially declared a “concept,” the photo is expected to be quite close to the look of the actual 2012 Honda CR-V, the third best-selling product line for American Honda, so a critical addition to the line-up.  And a much-delayed one, the launch pushed back due to the problems created by the March 11 Japanese earthquake and tsunami.  The 2012 CR-V was originally expected closer to the launch of the upcoming model-year.

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