Honda's Q1 Cycle Sales Fall 5.3%

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Japan's Honda Motor Co. Ltd. says motorcycle sales during its fiscal first quarter, ended June 30, dropped 5.3 percent to 2.25 million units.

Honda?s first quarter motorcycle and ATV sales to North America totaled 80,000 units, down 9,000 units compared to the same three-month period in 2006. By comparison, sales in Europe dropped 10,000 units to 95,000, sales in Japan dropped 5,000 units to 84,000, and sales in Asia dropped 186,000 units to 1.62 million.

The drop in consolidated motorcycle sales comes mainly from decreased sales of components parts sets for Asia; slowing growth in India due to rising interest rates; a continued downturn in the Indonesian market; and a slowdown in the North American off-road market, where enduro bike and ATV sales are "flagging," Honda says.

Still, while unit sales were down, value was up on cost-cutting efforts and foreign exchange effects. First quarter net sales from Honda?s motorcycle business amounted to 368.3 billion yen ($3.10 billion), up 18.8 percent from 310.1 billion yen ($2.61 billion) for the same period last year.

Honda sold 10.37 million motorcycles and ATVs in its last fiscal year, ended March 31, 2007. For 2008, the company expects to sell 9.93 million units.