AM Online

Honda's high hopes for 2003

Honda has 3 per cent of UK market share for 2002 firmly in its sites. And with a solid platform of new model launches in 2003, the company says it is set to increase its UK market penetration next year.

Honda UK's general manager David Strangeways says: “This year has been Honda UK's best ever, and we look forward to building on this success next year. But our aim is not just to generate bigger numbers. For 2003 we intend to put as much effort into satisfying our existing customers as we do winning new ones.

“And we want to continue to develop the Honda brand so that it is seen as an exciting, dynamic company that does more than build solid, worthy cars.”

The company has enjoyed a 20 per cent hike in demand and the 12-month tally is moving towards 80,000 sales – and with UK-built vehicles representing 75 per cent of the total.

The bulk of sales in 2002 have been Civics (35,000), CR-Vs (13,000) and the outgoing Accord (9000). But the new Jazz also made an impact in its debut year – more than 12,000 were sold.

Coming in 2003 are the new Accord saloon (UK debut in February) closely followed by its estate version in May. The Civic 5-door range will have a new flagship sporty 2.0 litre 160PS Type-S; and it will also get a new 3-door 1.6VTEC Sport to offer Type-R looks allied with the benefit of the lower running costs of the regular 1.6.

The new Civic IMA (Intergrated Motor Assist) hybrid debuts in May.

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