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ATL foresees Honda stock depletion

Published:Friday | March 25, 2011 | 12:00 AM
A 2009 Honda Fit on display at ATL Motors on Hagley Park Road, Kingston. - File

Christopher DaCosta, group general general for sales at ATL Automotives, says that while ATL Motor's next shipment of Honda vehicles is already on the water and headed for Jamaica, he remains concerned about supplies for May, June and July.

Shipments for the period, he said Thursday, are likely to see delays of up to one month arising from extended closures of production plants by Japanese automaker Honda following the historic 9.0 magnitude earthquake in the Asian powerhouse.

ATL Motors is exclusive dealer for Honda in Jamaica since August 1997.

On Thursday, the Japanese automaker announced yet another delay, saying it had extended shutdown of its Sayama and Suzuka plants through April 3 and was transferring work from its Tochigi Automobile R&D Center, including automobile product development, procurement and manufacturing technology development, to other locations in Japan.

"We might be thin on stock during coming months," said DaCosta.

He said parts supplies for Honda and several other makes, including cars manufactured in the United States, will also be affected, as automakers are dependent on parts supplied by producers in Japan whose plants are yet to restart operations.

Five Honda production plants in Japan have been affected by the earthquake and tsunami which also caused the shuttering of nuclear power plants.

The facilities have been idle since the March 11 disasters.

DaCosta said that he had not heard from Honda since last week.

"We are awaiting official advisories. Once we know that, we will be in a much better position to advise our clients," he said.

ATL Motors operates from Hagley Park Road in Kingston - offering new vehicle sales, service, Honda parts and a collision repair centre - but the brand is also now sold from Montego Bay from shared space with another ATL subsidiary, Autohaus, which has a showroom and service centre there for German brands VW and Audi.