Posted Dec 2nd 2011 8:56AM
There are plenty of ways to know an automaker has made a misstep. Low sales and high inventory are typical markers of a lackluster model, but it's more rare for a company's CEO to come out and offer a full apology for failing to deliver a worthwhile vehicle. That's exactly what Honda CEO Takanobu Ito has done in response to complaints about the 2012 Honda Civic. Ito has said that he takes responsibility for the vehicle's meager performance in North America and that Honda takes input from world markets very seriously. The CEO also said that his company is working to discern the best course of action moving forward.
The redesigned Honda Civic hasn't found many fans since it debuted in April. Consumer Reports refused to recommend the vehicle for the first time in the car's history, and Automotive News reports that The Wall Street Journal called the vehicle's new look a betrayal.
Not surprisingly, Civic sales have dropped by 15 per cent while the rest of the automotive market has seen an increase of 10 per cent compared to last year. While some of that fall may be due to supply issues brought about first by earthquake and tsunami activity in Japan and later by floods in Thailand, the reality is that the bread-and-butter compact from Honda simply isn't meeting expectations.