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Posts Tagged ‘japanese car sales’

Hot August Sales Drive Record New Car Pricing

Industry sales tracking to be best in six years.

by on Sep.04, 2013

Pickups contributed significantly to a red-hot August sales result.

U.S. new car sales appear to have reached a six-year high as buyers raced back to showrooms in hot August – but the news wasn’t all good from a consumer standpoint. While car sales are adding momentum to an economy still looking for traction, buyers may have wound up paying record prices for new vehicles last month, according to a preliminary analysis.

Sales of new cars, trucks and crossovers appear to have run at a 16 million annualized pace, according to industry analysts, with General Motors, Ford, Chrysler, Toyota and Nissan among the many brands to show double-digit gains. Hyundai, set another sales record despite the impact of capacity problems worsened by a labor dispute in South Korea. Volkswagen was one of the rare losers, sales slipping 1.8% for the month.

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“August capped a great summer for new vehicle sales,” says Bill Fay, Toyota division group vice president and general manager, who suggested that, “The auto industry continues to be a bright spot in the economic recovery.” (more…)

U.S. Automakers Protest Yen

Low rate gives Japanese makers pricing advantage.

by on May.10, 2013

Toyota gains a pricing advantage over U.S. competitors due to the weak yen.

American carmakers are complaining that the Japanese government’s deliberate manipulation of the yen is giving Japan’s carmakers an unfair advantage.

Matt Blunt, president of the American Automotive Policy Council, which represents the interests of General Motors, Ford and Chrysler in Washington, D.C., said Japan is taking unfair advantage of the global trading system after the value of the yen dropped to a new low relative to the U.S. dollar.

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“The depth of Japanese currency manipulation has reached a new low,” Blunt said in a statement.


Honda Quadruples Earnings

Maker bounces back strong a year after quake.

by on Aug.01, 2012

The concept version of the 2013 Honda Accord Coupe.

A year after Japan was rocked by a devastating earthquake and tsunami that nearly brought its auto industry to its knees, Japanese maker Honda is showing clear signs of recovery, reporting quarterly earnings quadrupled this year.

Of course, the numbers have to be compared to a quarter that followed the March 11 disaster. Honda, in fact, was the only maker to report a death at one of its facilities. And, like most of its Japanese rivals, it virtually shut down its Japanese plants for more than a month after the earthquake due to parts shortages.

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Profits for the April-June quarter surged to $1.7 billion, up about 400%, while sales took a similar jump to $31.2 billion as dealers in Japan, the U.S. and other key markets finally had enough product to sell.


Auto Industry Likely to End Year with Strong Sales

Preliminary signs suggest year-end buying surge.

by on Dec.23, 2011

Christmas shoppers will put plenty of cars under the tree this year.

The auto industry has been doing much of the heavy lifting, in recent months, helping fuel a late-2011 surge in the economy and it looks like the car market’s recovery from its worst downturn since the Great Depression is continuing into the year-end holidays.

In fact, December is on track to be the strongest month of the year, an unusual development as American consumers typically focus their spending on smaller presents they can pile up under the tree.

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But if preliminary reports hold true for the month as a whole, December could see retail U.S. car sales surge past the 1 million mark for the first time since the 2009 Cash for Clunkers program, according to J.D. Power and Associates.

“The industry has managed through another series of external shocks and is in a healthier position as the year closes,” said John Humphrey, Power’s senior vice president of global automotive operations.


Honda Profits Tumble 40%

Maker blames strong yen – but seafood subsidiary’s problems also hurt.

by on Jan.31, 2011

The Honda CR-Z - hurt by a strong dollar and the end of Japanese green car incentives.

Honda saw profits tumble by nearly 40% for the maker’s third quarter, largely due to problems with the weak U.S. dollar, but while sales are down, it upgraded its profit forecast for the full fiscal year, which ends on March 31.

Earnings for the October-December quarter slipped to 81.1 billion yen ($989 million), down from 134.6 billion yen a year earlier.  Quarterly sales of 2.11 trillion yen ($25.7 billion) were off 6%.

The maker has been hammered by a variety of factors, including the shift in exchange rates.  The rising yen has crimped sales in dollar-delineated markets, like the U.S., forcing the maker to either raise prices – and risk losing sales – increase incentives – or hold the line on prices and watch margins tumble.

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But there have been other problems, including a decline in home market sales triggered by the end of Japanese green car incentives.  And Honda’s net took a hit from a fluke problem with a seafood subsidiary that engaged in questionable business practices, last week triggering an apology from senior managers who warned of the impact on third-quarter earnings.  (Click Here for the full story on the seafood subsidiary’s problems.)


Japan Car Sales Jump 18.3% for November

Long-troubled market shows third consecutive gain.

by on Dec.01, 2009

The Japanese version of the new Honda Insight has helped prop up the carmaker's sales.

The Japanese version of the new Honda Insight has helped prop up the carmaker's sales.

In a sign that the Japanese economy is gaining some life, car sales jumped 18.3% in November, the industry reported today.  That marked the third monthly increase in a row following 13 straight months of decline.

Of course, the turnaround needs to be put in perspective, since late 2008 saw sharp declines.  In fact, the latest 18.3% increase barely offsets the 18.2% drop in the Japanese car market in November 2008.

On the whole, the market operated at a flat, Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate, or SAAR, of 5.3 million, which is barely half the Japanese market’s one-time peak.

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(Click Here for Joe Szczesny’s report on the seemingly irreversible, long-term decline of the Japanese car market.)

November demand for minicars, particularly popular on the crowded urban streets of Japan, surged 6.5%, but so-called non-minis grew 36%.


Nissan in Meltdown

Automaker slashing 20,000 jobs, seeking U.S., Japanese aid.

by on Feb.09, 2009

Ghosn, seen here during better times

Ghosn, seen here during better times

Feeling the pinch of a worsening global meltdown, Nissan Motor Co. plans to trim 20,000 jobs and seek government assistance from both Japan and the United States.

As reported, last week, the Japanese maker has been suffering serious problems both in its home market and in the U.S., its biggest foreign outlet. It’s a problem plaguing many of its Japanese competitors, including the industry giant, Toyota Motor Co., which will report a $4.5 billion loss for the fiscal year ending March 31. Nissan, meanwhile, will go $2.9 billion (265 billion yen) for the same period, CEO Carlos Ghosn announced on Monday.

“The global auto industry is in turmoil, and Nissan is no exception,” Ghosn revealed to reporters, following a meeting with Nissan staff.