Posted by Dale Buss on December 1, 2011 11:01 AM
There's certainly plenty of blame to go around for the disappointing year that Honda has had. Start with Mother Nature: an earthquake in Japan and flood in Thailand. But human error also has played a large role in the brand's recent swoon in the U.S. market and worldwide.
For blame, you can now start with Honda Motor CEO Takanobu Ito and decisions that the company made concerning the less-than-impressive new Honda Civic, a mainstay of its product lineup. Civic sales have dipped by 15 percent so far this year in the U.S. despite the launch of the new version, and not just because of supply constraints caused by the natural disasters.
During a roundtable with journalists at the Tokyo Auto Show, Ito said that "the ultimate responsibiity" for decisions about the new version "rest[s] with me." But what decisions? How exactly did Civic, once a darling of Consumer Reports auto evaluators, end up left off the list of "recommended" vehicles for its 2012 version?Continue reading...