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Honda Chief Warns Industry Back to Bad Old Ways

Excess fleet sales, extended-length loans could worsen next sales downturn, says Mendel.

by on Jan.11, 2017

Honda's U.S. Chief John Mendel expressed concerns about the state of the U.S. auto industry today.

Are automakers returning to their bad old ways, repeating the same, short-sighted steps that got them into so much trouble when the Great Recession struck and U.S. car sales collapsed at the beginning of the decade?

That’s something worrying John Mendel, Honda’s top American executive. Speaking at an industry confab in Detroit on Wednesday, he said he’s “experiencing really sweaty palms as he watches the rapid rise of fleet sales, extended loans, sub-prime lending and other risky practices.

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Some of these steps are “taking buyers out of the market,” and will mean lower sales during the next few years, warned Mendel in an interview following his appearance at the Automotive News World Congress in Detroit. (more…)