Henio Arcangeli Jr. was something of a surprise choice two and a half years ago to run the automobile division of American Honda Motor Co. The U.S. arm, as well as global parent Honda Motor Co., are known for their insular culture and strong preference for promoting internally. And Arcangeli was an outsider, both to Honda and the auto industry.
Arcangeli's departure, announced last week, also was a surprise. The executive had just given a presentation to Honda dealers at the NADA Show in Las Vegas and delivered a keynote speech before the American International Automobile Dealers Association.
In an interview at the show, Arcangeli, 57, told Automotive News that meetings with dealers had gone well and there was a clear road map for 2020. "We talked about our goals for the year, maintaining our car business, capitalizing on our truck business and preparing for electrification," he said.
The automaker's U.S. unit was coming off a year of stable sales. Deliveries for the Honda and Acura brands combined rose 0.2 percent in a market that was down 1.2 percent overall. Dealership profits rose 6 percent last year, Arcangeli said, and retailers expressed optimism about a 2020 filled with refreshed products.