Japanese lose big chunk of market share
September inventory figures for Japanese brands improved slightly over August, giving the first indication that the worst may be over. An increase of nearly 15,000 units provides a signal that in the coming months more inventory should become available. "Additional product cannot arrive soon enough for dealers in the U.S. as they continue to give up share in their most important high-volume segments," kbb said in its new report.
Overall, Japanese market share has declined 4 points since 2010, dropping from 38.6 percent in 2010 to 34.8 percent through August of this year. The 4-point translates into a loss of more than 300,000 potential sales that were diverted primarily to the domestic and Korean manufacturers. In addition, there are more pronounced declines in a handful of crucial segments.
Market in the ultra-competitive compact car, mid-size car and compact crossover segments are down significantly for the Japanese Additional inventory is crucial in these segments, especially for highly anticipated redesigns such as the 2012 Toyota Camry, 2012 RAV4, 2012 Honda Civic and 2012 Honda CR-V. Among all Japanese brands, Toyota and Honda have taken the most significant hit in terms of overall market share. Toyota and Honda suffered most from the earthquake, shedding 2.5 points and 1.5 points, respectively, allowing Hyundai, Chrysler and GM to each benefit by 1 point or more. "While a gain or loss of a few points may seem insignificant, when we examine the impact to volume and potentially lost revenue, we begin to see the importance of market share," the kbb report noted. By Joseph Szczesny