Honda Profit Rises 3% on U.S. Sales, Cost Control

First Up 11/08/19

U.S. Justice Department Issues Subpoenas to Automakers in California Emissions Probe
The U.S. Justice Department has issued civil subpoenas to four major automakers, demanding that they disclose details on a deal struck with California in July to follow strict vehicle emissions standards, a source briefed on the matter said on Thursday, reports Reuters. The Justice Department is carrying out an antitrust investigation into the voluntary agreement. It comes against a growing number of fights between the Republican White House and California on a number of fronts, including numerous environmental issues. The Trump administration in September issued a determination that California cannot set its own vehicle emission standards and zero-emission vehicle mandates and is investigating if the companies engaged in anti-competitive conduct in striking the deal. The Justice Department has issued civil investigative demands to Ford Motor Co, Honda Motor Co, BMW AG, and Volkswagen AG. Read more here. 

Honda Profit Rises 3% on U.S. Sales, Cost Control
Honda reported a 2.6 percent advance in operating profit in the latest quarter as brisk North American earnings, aggressive cost containment and lower warranty outlays offset shrinking global sales and losses from unfavorable foreign exchange rates, reports Automotive News. Operating profit increased to 220.1 billion yen ($2.04 billion) in fiscal second quarter ended Sept. 30, the Japanese automaker announced in its earnings report on Friday. Net income declined 6.7 percent to 196.5 billion yen ($1.82 billion) in the three-month period, partly because the company was hit by higher income tax expenses in India. Revenue retreated 2.9 percent to 3.73 trillion yen ($34.6 billion), as worldwide sales dipped 0.4 percent to 1.24 million vehicles in the July-September quarter. North America was a profit engine, driving Honda higher on robust sales of not only light trucks such as the CR-V crossover but passenger cars such as the Civic small sedan. Read more here. 

Rust in Peace: The Cars That Are Not Long for This World
The 2020 model year has begun, and along with it come the obituaries of cars that have reached the end of the assembly line. Predictably, given low gas prices and consumer infatuation with SUVs and crossovers, the list is filled mostly with large sedans and economy cars, some beloved. The Detroit News is featuring a list of the casualties, including the BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo and 6 Series Gran Turismo. The Buick Cascada is also taking a bow. Like most Buick sedans, this tarted-up Opel, an already old design when introduced stateside, lacked the sizzle required of a droptop. Poor sales and GM’s sale of Opel ensured its eventual demise. Check out the other vehicles on their last leg in 2020 here. 

In Today's Auto Industry, Even Toyota Needs Friends
It is revealing that even Toyota Motor, which makes more profit than any other car maker globally, doesn’t feel it can face the future of the auto industry on its own. The Wall Street Journal reports that the Japanese giant announced a joint venture with Chinese electric-car pioneer BYD Company alongside quarterly results Thursday. Starting next year, both companies will contribute engineers from their research and development departments into a new Chinese unit that will design battery cars and the necessary production platforms. The deal is the latest in a string of partnerships aimed at sharing the burden of technology investments, particularly for electric cars. Following a policy President Akio Toyoda has called “creating friends,” Toyota has this year also formed sweeping alliances with Panasonic, Tesla’s battery partner; Contemporary Amperex Technology Company, China’s other big battery supplier; smaller Japanese car makers Subaru and Suzuki Motor; and Denso, Japan’s top auto parts supplier (and once part of Toyota). Read more here (subscription required). 

Hyundai Set to Nearly Triple "Eco-Focused" Product Lines
Hyundai will introduce an updated version of its electrified Ioniq line at the Los Angeles Auto Show later this month, with a new hybrid version of its midsize Sonata to follow next February. Those models will join a growing array of battery- and hydrogen-powered vehicles the Korean carmaker plans to add to its line-up during the next three years. According to The Detroit Bureau, by 2022, Hyundai officials revealed on Thursday that the number of “eco-focused” products in its U.S. line-up will grow from five to 13. That will include “six alternatively fueled sedans and seven SUVs,” the company said. Though demand for battery- and hydrogen-powered vehicles has been slow to grow, there are signs that the pace is starting to pick up, said Mike O’Brien, the head of product planning for Hyundai Motor America, presenting a significant growth opportunity. Read more here. 

Webinar: How to Protect Your Used Car Margins
AutoTalk's car gurus are back!

On Tuesday, November 19th at 2:00 p.m. EST, tune in as Bob Grill, Carfax Senior Partner Development Manager, along with Automotive Consultant Mike Rossman deliver a robust presentation detailing how to:

  • Drive buyers, not just traffic

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To register, click here. 

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