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Dealership group to Honda: ‘Walang iwanan’

Or something like that

Honda Cars Manila Bay in Parañaque is one of the 11 dealerships under HCMI. PHOTO FROM HONDA CARS MAKATI

Early this week, the local car industry was sad to learn of four Honda dealerships (Kalookan, Fairview, Marikina and Marcos Highway) under the Yuchengco Group shutting down by the end of this month. Although this seems like a purely strategic business decision—in particular, the Yuchengco Group appears to be pivoting to Geely—some observers couldn’t help but wonder whether the Japanese automaker was in trouble.

You will recall that Honda Cars Philippines had closed its manufacturing facility in Santa Rosa, Laguna, in March, which only adds to speculation the company might be in very dire straits. Of course Honda was quick to dispel these whispers by releasing a statement stressing its intent to stay in our market.

And now, Honda Cars Makati Inc.—a big group of Honda dealers with 11 branches (Makati, Pasig, Alabang, Shaw, Global City, Manila Bay, Cebu, Mandaue, Iloilo, Negros Occidental and Cagayan de Oro) in its stable—has thrown its unwavering support behind the brand. In a press statement attributed to HCMI president Jenara Rosanna Ong, the group said:

In relation to the recent announcement made by HCPI about the closure of Honda’s four dealerships located in the northern part of Metro Manila, HCMI expresses its continued and full support to Honda in the Philippines. Established in 1991 and the first of six global mobility brands under AC Motors, an Ayala company, HCMI is in the process of developing new sales and after-sales channels, optimizing facilities and resources, and adopting new safety protocols. All these are intended to serve their customers better and to keep their customers and employees safe.

In other words, if you’re a Honda vehicle owner, there’s no need to worry about your service requirements in the future. It does look like the firm will continue doing business on our shores for many years to come.

Vernon B. Sarne

Vernon is the founder and editor-in-chief of VISOR. He has been an automotive journalist since July 1995. He became one by serendipity, walking into the office of a small publishing company and applying for a position he had no idea was for a local car magazine. God has watched over him throughout his humble journey. He writes the ‘Spoiler’ column.