Weaker U.S. sales at American Honda in April pulled the automaker into negative territory for the year as sliding demand for sedans and Acura vehicles offset healthy light truck volume.
American Honda’s U.S. sales slipped 7 percent for the month to 138,386 vehicles, putting the automaker down 0.6 percent for the year.
The decline in volume came even as American Honda raised average new-vehicle incentives 16 percent to $1,863 in April.
Honda division volume dropped 6.3 percent to 124,254 sales in April. The slump in the new-car market echoing across the industry has hit Honda as well; sales all of its cars were down for the month, with most posting double-digit losses.
The laggards included the Civic (down 12 percent to 31,211 sales) and the aging Accord (down 15 percent to 26,938 sales). Sales of the subcompact Fit hatchback slipped 5.1 percent to 4,871 units in April, but it remains the only Honda car with a sales increase on the year (0.8 percent).
On the light-truck side, Honda’s redesigned CR-V continues to post gains, rising 13 percent in April to 32,671 units, while the subcompact HR-V was up 22 percent to 8,527 sales. Demand for the soon-to-be-replaced Odyssey minivan was down 47 percent to 6,984 vehicles and the Pilot midsize crossover was down 14 percent to 9,746 sales.
Sales at the Acura division slid 13 percent to 14,132 vehicles, the fourth consecutive month this year sales have dropped by double digits. The compact ILX was down 49 percent to 832 vehicles and the midsize RLX was down 32 percent to 106 sales. The midsize TLX showed healthy signs of life right before a refreshed version goes on sale next month; it was up 39 percent in April to 5,258 total sales.
Acura’s crossovers -- typically a bedrock of the brand’s sales volumes -- had a bad month. Sales of the compact RDX slipped 36 percent to 3,793 while deliveries of the midsize MDX dropped 14 percent to 4,052.