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Honda’s quarterly profit up on Asian sales growth

First Published      Last Updated Jul 29 2014 09:53 am

Tokyo • Honda's quarterly profit surged nearly 20 percent on demand for remodeled cars in Japan and elsewhere in Asia. The Japanese automaker also raised its full-year profit and sales forecasts.

Honda Motor Co. reported a profit Tuesday of $1.4 billion)for the April-June fiscal first quarter, close to what analysts surveyed by FactSet had forecast.

The automaker raised its annual profit forecast to $5.9 billion from $5.8 billion, and its annual sales forecast to $125.5 billion from $1215 billion.

Honda is Japan's No. 3 automaker.

Demand was strong recently for Honda's new City sedan in India, Mobilio seven-seater in Indonesia and the remodeled Fit subcompact in Japan, helping lift quarterly sales 5 percent year-on-year to $29.3 billion.

Honda, which sold 1.06 million vehicles in April-June, expects to sell 4.83 million vehicles for the fiscal year through March 2015.

The Tokyo-based maker of the Odyssey minivan and Accord sedan sold 4.32 million vehicles last fiscal year.

Japanese rival Nissan Motor Co., which reported a quarterly profit jump of nearly 37 percent on Monday, expects to sell 5.65 million vehicles this fiscal year, up 8.9 percent from the previous year.

Toyota, the world's top automaker, reports earnings Aug. 5.

Japanese automakers continue to do solid business in North America but have all embarked on an aggressive growth strategy in developing nations.

Honda is unique compared with Nissan and Toyota for its powerful motorcycle division that makes a significant contribution to its earnings.

Honda sold 4.14 million motorcycles during the fiscal first quarter, up from 4.05 million the same period a year earlier.