Honda avoided its second major vehicle launch disruption of the year when it announced that the redesigned Honda CR-V would arrive at dealerships on time next month.
On Oct. 31, Honda said supplier disruptions caused by flooding in Thailand threatened to delay the crossover's sales debut by several weeks. It's not clear if Honda had to find new sources of vehicle components from Thai suppliers disrupted by the flooding, or if the CR-V's supply chain was not affected.
"Things have improved when it comes to our ability to produce the CR-V on schedule," said American Honda spokesman Jeffrey Smith, who declined to elaborate.
Japan's earthquake and tsunami in March disrupted the release of the redesigned Civic last summer. The new Civic and CR-V are among four core products Honda is launching in the United States during an 18-month period. A redesigned Odyssey minivan went on sale a year ago, and a redesigned mid-sized Accord will be introduced in the spring.
Honda also said last week that supplier disruptions will hamper production at U.S. plants through at least Nov. 23 and at Canadian plants through Nov. 25. But after cutting output in North America by 50 percent earlier this month, Honda said production will improve at some of its plants later in November.
In a memo sent to dealers last week, John Mendel, American Honda executive vice president of sales, said production will improve to up to 75 percent of normal levels, depending on the plant.
"We have made significant progress in finding alternative manufacturing facilities or new suppliers for parts that are currently sourced from Thailand," Mendel said in the memo.
Honda's U.S. sales have suffered this year because of inventory shortages. Honda brand sales are down 5 percent to 857,869 through October, while total U.S. light-vehicle sales have increased 10 percent.
Sales of the CR-V are up 11 percent this year to 180,361 units.