In Los Angeles, consumers can get the Camry LE for $199 per month with a $1,999 down payment. The higher-level SE trim is an extra $10 per month.
Case, who owns Honda stores in Davie, Fla., near Fort Lauderdale, and Euclid, Ohio, near Cleveland, says his stores experienced an immediate sales uptick when the new deal took effect. He added that the Civic, too, has been "doing unbelievably well" because would-be Accord buyers have been jumping to its smaller, less costly sibling.
"We feel a big difference already," Case told Automotive News. "We had our first weekend. Our sales virtually doubled from what they were."
Other dealers say it's still too early to tell if the discount will work. And they figure this is as much help as they're going to get from Honda on the Accord.
Honda executives have confirmed as much. While some rivals are spending around $100 million per month on incentives, that's simply not the Honda way, said Henio Arcangeli Jr., senior vice president of the automobile division of American Honda Motor Co.
A Honda spokeswoman said the lease offer wasn't a reaction to slower Accord sales but a normal adjustment. Meanwhile, Honda has trimmed Accord output at its Marysville, Ohio, plant to let bloated inventories settle to more Honda-like levels.
One Midwest dealer complained that Honda has taken a position that it will "just reduce production instead of trying to take care of those customers that have been loyal with our product."
The dealer said his store planned to do email blasts to entice customers whose leases on the 2015 Accord are nearly over.
"For a lot of people, what we ask them to do is extend your lease" for up to six months, said the dealer, who declined to be named. "As [Honda] comes forward with more aggressive programs, then they can get out of their car. A lot of people are waiting to see. They don't want to spend $100 more. I don't blame them."
Another Midwest dealer said he thinks the deal is a step in the right direction, but not enough. One of his longtime salespeople told him the Accord's monthly lease payment is still $60 too much.
"Will it sell some cars for us? Yeah," the dealer said of the discounted lease. "Is it the answer? No."