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Honda Civic Natural Gas for 2013

November 30, 2012 in CNG, NGVs by Rich Piellisch  |  No Comments

‘Of Course,’ But After the Lingering 2012s Are Placed

American Honda will offer an Indiana-built 2013 Civic Natural Gas taking advantage of the 2013 model year’s new styling and features – but not until inventories of the 2012 CNG car are cleared. Honda broke almost all sales records for its dedicated natural gas vehicle this year, but because it was so optimistic in ramping up production early on, it still has 2012 cars to sell.

Beyond the billboards like this one on the 405 in Los Angeles promoting single-driver HOV lane access, American Honda has sent direct mail to more than 100,000 previous Civic Hybrid and Civic GX customers urging them to try the CNG vehicle, and this month sponsored a drive-time radio campaign in Southern California.

“We built production in anticipation of high demand,” says American Honda assistant alt fuels manager Eric Rosenberg. “Unfortunately gasoline and crude oil prices rolled back and Americans, being what we are, took their eyes off the ball…

“Cheap gas always does that to consumers.”

American Honda product planning and logistics VP Art St. Cyr introduced the re-styled 2013 Honda Civic to the press at the 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show this week.

Cheap gasoline, he means, but knowledgeable buyers know that natural gas is cheaper still. Which is why, Rosenberg says, “Wholesale sales as of today are over 300% of what we sold the previous year.

“We and the dealers stocked in anticipation and as a result of that we have managed significant sales growth.”

“We’re having a record setting year with sales up over 30%,” Rosenberg said. “Each month has either been the first or second best month (for that month) in our 15 years of sales.”

Targeting the Consumer

Among the incentives for helping clear those 2012s are a $3,000 free Clean Energy Fuels compressed natural gas fuel card (F&F, October 9) for every Civic CNG sold to a retail (or a $2,000 Visa debit card where there is insufficient Clean Energy station availability), and 0.9% financing on all Civics including the Civic CNG.

The Honda Civic, re-styled for 2013

“We’ve never ever offered so many retail-oriented campaigns and incentives for the Civic Natural Gas,” Rosenberg says.

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Source: American Honda with Fleets & Fuels follow-up

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