HONDA'S JAPANESE PRODUCTION TO PLUNGE 40% IN 2009
August 5 2009.

Today's Nikkei morning edition in Japan reports that Honda's domestic production of motorcycles is expected to fall 40% on the year in fiscal 2009 as a result of stalled demand in Japan and delayed inventory adjustments overseas.

Honda's Kumamoto plant, now its sole domestic manufacturing base for motorcycles, plans to produce 181,000 units this fiscal year, compared with slightly more than 300,000 units in fiscal 2008. The fiscal 2009 figure is also less than half of the facility's annual output capacity of 460,000 units. 

About 50% of the motorcycles manufactured at the Kumamoto plant are for the domestic market, while 90% of the units shipped overseas are for the North American and European markets.

While sales in emerging markets such as India continue to show growth, Honda does not foresee a sharp recovery in overall demand for the next several years. As a result, production adjustments are likely to continue.