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Honda to kill off Fit, Civic Coupe, and manual Accord
Honda announced today that it will discontinue the Fit, remove the Honda Coupe from the line-up, and end production of manual-transmission Accords. While the decision axes its least popular models, Honda’s distilled Civic lineup will retain most of the configurations we know and appreciate, like the high-performance Si and Type R and the normcore, manual-equipped Civic sedan and hatch.
-We don't need to excuse these automaker decisions. History has shown them to be wrong about many things, many times. GM and Ford both had well-developed minivan concepts in the 70s "it won't sell"...
-not developing a new platform I can see. If the Fit (and Fusion for that matter) still meet safety standards then the reason for not making them is cutting autoworker jobs as you already paid for the platform so keep using it. "Free up the line to make crossovers" is a funny excuse I don't buy. Many, many lines have been closed in North America in the last 15 years.
-Honda makes generally great and/or perceived as great vehicles. But they have gotten out of touch on price-point. If Ridgelines were 10k cheaper and came in a few actual colours so they didn't blend in with all the Pilots you could probably sell enough to make up the difference in mark up. Fit could sell like gangbusters if it was actually affordable like the entry-level Hondas of 30-40 years ago.
There was no market for a British sports car. Mazda proved us wrong on that one. Honda could have been the last one standing on the stick-shift mid-size family sedan (Accord) and built a pillar of identity on that. Someone is going to sell a vehicle to these niches, especially if the masses ever wake up to how boring conformity crossovers are. Conceding that doesn't mean we need 6 companies selling a stick-shift midsize family sedan. But boy, it's going to be ironic when the only car you can buy in North America is a Jetta or Subaru and they "bizarrely" are profitable.