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Sep 20, 2001

Honda To Dealers: Get On Dedicated Honda-only Franchise Train

During Honda's dealer convention at Las Vegas Wednesday night, American Honda Vice President Ray Blank exhorted dealers to become single-line, dedicated Honda dealers and said that a range of new sales programs and incentives planned through 2010 will be designed to drive more business to Honda-only dealerships.<BR><BR>Honda-only stores will be designated "Powerhouse Dealers".<BR><BR>Film clips of an antique streamlined Hudson steam engine were used throughout the Honda dealer show, along with a new tag line, "Honda, PoweRED 2002", playing off Honda's Ride Red and Red Riders promotions.<BR><BR>Blank urged dealers to "get on the train" and become a dedicated Honda-only franchise.<BR><BR>Multi-line dealers surveyed after the presentation did not seem inclined to follow Blank's advice. "I guess I won't be a Powerhouse dealer," said one Honda and Kawasaki dealer.<BR><BR>A similar approach was tried without success in the early 1970s, when Kawasaki actually bought back franchises of some dealers selling both Kawasaki and Honda. That move was set off by Kawasaki's desire to not have the Z-1 sold in the same showroom as the Honda CB750, both models being revolutionary (at the time) four-cylinder machines.<BR><BR>On the other hand, Honda isn't Kawasaki, and this isn't 1970.