Suzuki makes wholesale gains; Honda’s Q4 strong

Suzuki Motor Corp. reported that its motorcycle business (motorcycles, scooters and ATVs) saw sales decrease 1.1 percent by ¥2.9 billion ($36.3 million) to ¥254.8 billion ($3.2 billion) year-over-year in fiscal year 2011. Suzuki announced its results for the fiscal year-ended March 31 on May 10.

Wholesales in North America increased compared to fiscal year 2010, but the overall bike sales decrease was mainly due to a decrease of sales in Europe, the company said. Operating income from the company’s overall motorcycle business improved by ¥8.4 billion ($105.1 million) year-over-year, but Suzuki saw an operating loss of ¥2.4 billion ($30 million) due to the impact of the yen appreciation and the floods in Thailand.

For fiscal year 2011, Suzuki reported motorcycle sales volume of 2.58 million, a 4 percent decrease from the 2.69 million sold in fiscal 2010. Sales to North America dropped to 48,000 in fiscal 2011, compared to 51,000 in fiscal 2010. For the fiscal fourth quarter, worldwide sales volume decreased 4.5 percent, from 641,000 units in fiscal 2010 to 612,000 units in fiscal 2011. Sales to North America in the fiscal fourth quarter of 2011 were 17,000 units, compared to 15,000 units in the fiscal fourth quarter of 2010.

For fiscal year 2011, Suzuki reported production of 2.57 million motorcycles, a decrease of 5.9 percent compared to 2.73 million units in fiscal year 2010. The fourth quarter of 2010 saw production of 684,000 units, a decrease of 7.2 percent compared to the 635,000 units produced in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011.

The GSXR-750 ranked second on the U.S. March New Sport Bike Registrations data that Polk provides to Powersports Business.

Suzuki’s forecast for fiscal 2012 include worldwide sales of 3.06 million units, with 2.61 million units sold in Asia, 82,000 in Japan and 51,000 in North America, an increase from the 48,000 in fiscal 2011. Suzuki forecasts sales of 62,000 units in Europe in fiscal 2012, compared to the 66,000 it sold there in fiscal 2011.

Honda’s bike sales set record
Honda Motor Co., Ltd. saw a positive fourth quarter, despite struggles throughout the rest of its 2012 fiscal year.

Motorcycle and power product sales led the positive notes in both the quarter and the 2012 fiscal year. Motorcycle unit sales, which include ATVs, set a new quarterly record in the fourth quarter, with 3.5 million units sold, an increase of 17.8 percent over the year-ago period. This was led by a hike in sales in Asia and other regions, including South America. However, fourth-quarter motorcycle sales in North America also increased to 53,000 units sold, a 15,000-unit improvement. The increase in North America was led by the positive impact of the introduction of the CBR250R and increased cruiser and scooter sales. Power products sales increased 15.1 percent to 2.0 million units in the quarter that ended March 31. For the year, power product sales were up 5.6 percent to 5.8 million units. Motorcycle sales were up 9.7 percent in the fiscal year, with 12.6 million units sold.

For the fourth quarter, net sales and other operating revenue grew 8.7 percent to ¥2.4 trillion ($29.9 billion), while net income rose 60.7 percent to ¥71.5 billion ($890.0 million). Operating income for the quarter jumped 142.3 percent to ¥111.9 billion ($1.4 billion). However, as successful as the fourth quarter was, the year didn’t follow suit. Net sales and other operating revenue decreased 11.1 percent to ¥7.9 trillion ($98.3 billion) in the 2012 fiscal year. Net income dropped 60.4 percent to ¥211.4 billion ($2.6 billion), and operating income decreased 59.4 percent to ¥231.3 billion ($2.9 billion).

In the 2013 fiscal year, Honda anticipates growth over its recently concluded year. Net sales and other operating revenue are expected to hit ¥10.3 trillion ($128.1 billion), an increase of 29.6 percent over this past year. Net income is expected to increase 122.2 percent to ¥470 billion ($5.8 billion), and operating income is anticipated to grow 168 percent to ¥620 billion ($7.7 billion).

Yamaha’s Q1 exceeds forecast
Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. outperformed its forecasted financial results in its fiscal fourth quarter, despite a decrease in net sales, operating income, ordinary income and net income.

Net sales saw a slight decrease of 0.8 percent to ¥315.9 billion as motorcycle sales dropped in Asia and Central and South America, and the appreciation of the yen offset improvements in power products, marine products, other products and U.S. motorcycle sales.

Operating income slid 39.7 percent to ¥12.4 billion; ordinary income dipped 35.4 percent to ¥17.0 billion, and net income decreased 14.3 percent to ¥11.5 billion. However, each improved upon projected levels, as operating income exceeded projections by 8.1 percent; ordinary income performed 41.7 percent better, and net income was 188.2 percent improved.


Despite net sales increases in the United States, Thailand, Vietnam and India, overall net sales of Yamaha motorcycles fell 4.5 percent to ¥209.9 billion. Unit sales dropped 5.4 percent to 1.6 million units. Sales in Europe were stagnant, while those in Indonesia and Brazil decreased. Marine net sales grew 7.8 percent to ¥54.6 billion, as the sales of outboard motors and PWC increased in the U.S., and outboard motors saw growth in demand in Russia, Central and South America, Asia and other regions. The power products segment reported a net sales increase of 1.7 percent to ¥22.1 billion, as ATV sales remained level, but sales of generators in Japan increased as customers prepared for future natural disasters.

Kawi’s motorcycle sales plateau
Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Ltd. posted mix results for its 2012 fiscal year. While the company’s net sales were up 6.3 percent to ¥1.3 trillion ($15.9 billion), and operating income was up 34.9 percent to ¥57.5 billion ($699.8 million), net income dropped 10.2 percent to ¥23.3 billion ($283.9 million).

Net sales of motorcycles saw zero growth, with ¥235.2 billion ($2.9 billion) in net sales. Motorcycle sales for the year accounted for 18 percent of Kawasaki’s total sales.

For the 2013 fiscal year, Kawasaki expects a 45.8 percent increase in net income to ¥34 billion ($423.1 million). Growth in net sales of 5.8 percent to nearly ¥1.4 trillion ($17.4 billion) is also expected, however it’s anticipated that operating income will drop 9.5 percent to ¥52 billion ($647.2 million).

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