Honda gives up on Accords and CRVs in Japan

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Home » Honda gives up on Accords and CRVs in Japan

Intro to Japans failure of Accords and CRVs

According to a study by Management Study Guide, the highly competitive market of sedans and hatchbacks from Korean and Japanese imports is the main reason American car manufacturers have left the sedan and hatchback market. 

Find out what has caused the issues that led to the downfall of these classic auto lines.

A brief look at the CRV in Japan

Despite having high sales margins in the global market, including Malaysia, where the CR-V was the third-best-selling model, the CR-V saw a decline in Japan. Vezel, launched in Japan in the same year as CR-V, performed well in Japan. The Vezel sold, on average, 4,390 units per month, twelve times as many as the CR-V’s Japanese monthly sales. Honda sells about 370 units of CRV each month in Japan.

How can you hate the CRV?

It’s not all about the car; it’s more about the market dynamics. The Honda CR-V shares the Honda Civic’s platform, and it’s a compact C-SUV. In 1997, the North American market received the nameplate. The automaker opened local manufacturing plants in Canada, Mexico, and the USA. The company also has a manufacturing plant for CRVs in Wuhan (China) as a partnership with Dongfeng Motor Corporation.

The CRV stands for Comfortable Running Vehicle, and Honda published a British review titled “Compact Recreational Vehicle” instead. Even though the CR-V wasn’t the most-sold Honda vehicle worldwide in 2020, this was despite. It sits between the ZR-V, marketed in North America under the HR-V name, and the larger Honda Passport/Pilot.

The Accord just can’t make it in Japan

Honda is removing the Accord nameplate from Japan as part of its strategy to reduce production costs. Most of Honda’s models are made outside Japan anyway. The Japanese automaker will remove many models from its Japanese lineup, including the Thai-built Accord, in addition to CR-V and Accord. According to reports, ten Honda models will be subject to the guillotine for 18 months. This includes the Honda Odyssey.

In 2019, the Honda Accord entered its tenth generation. It was made in Thailand, China, and Malaysia, and Japan gets right-hand drive Thailand-built models along with Australia, Indonesia, and other Southeast Asian countries like the Philippines.

The Accord is not sold in New Zealand and the UK right-hand drive markets. Since 1976, Honda has been producing the Accord, also known in Japan and China as ‘Hepburn” and ‘Inspire.’ The Accord has been a top-selling car in the US since 1989. It can be found in various body styles, including coupes, station wagons, and the Crosstour C-SUV.

The Honda Accord was once a best-seller in Japan, but competition from other automakers has eroded its market share. In recent years, Toyota and Nissan have been selling more cars than Honda in Japan. The Accord is still a popular car in other markets, but it has lost its appeal in Japan.
Honda has been struggling to keep up with the competition in Japan.

Toyota and Nissan have sold more cars than Honda in the past few years. The Accord is still a popular car in other markets, but it has lost its appeal in Japan, and competition from other automakers has eroded its market share.

Why is Honda just giving up on the Accords and CRVs?

You might be surprised that Toyota is considered the closest competitor in most markets, except Japan. Honda’s closest competitors in Japan are brands like Suzuki or Daihatsu, as demonstrated by the fact that over 50% of Honda sales come from Kei models. These models happen to be Suzuki’s and Daihatsu’s primary markets.

Honda continues to hold the top spot in this segment. The Honda N-Box has been the country’s best-selling vehicle for seven consecutive years, starting in 2015. It contributed more than 30 percent of Honda’s total sales. Honda Japan’s Kei-class cars, which include the N-One and N-WGN, N-Van, and N-Box, accounted for 53 percent of Honda Japan’s total sales of 579 740 units in 2021.

This market dynamic means that non-Kei nameplates such as the CR-V or Accord, despite being very popular in Japan’s overseas markets, aren’t as popular here. The CR-V/Accord became more American-oriented and less Japanese as a result, and the models were inevitably tailored to the needs of their most important customers. The current CR-V is more prominent than its predecessor, measuring 71 mm longer and 21 mm wider, and it also stands 18 mm higher than the 5th-gen CR-V.

Why did it fail in Japan?

This development has a flip side: Japanese buyers are less interested in the N-Box or Vezel (HRV) models. Toyota is facing the same market dynamics with the Camry and the RAV-4, which aren’t popular among Japanese buyers. Honda’s announcement of discontinuing sales in Japan of Insight and CR-V is no surprise.

While the cars are still available on the Japan company’s website, dealers have been notified about the discontinuance of these models. This explanation might seem strange to Insight, and it makes sense to discontinue Insight, considering that hybrid Civic e.HEV reduces Insight’s offer of redundancy. The automaker announced the gradual closure of the Sayama plant in the following two to three years.
The Honda Accord is manufactured in Thailand but is no longer in demand.

Honda will not leave Japan with only Kei cars as it prepares to launch a smaller Honda HR-V (the Honda Venezel) aimed at the USA. The Vezel’s success in the “in-betweener sweet spot” will be determined over time. No Honda product can replace the Accord in Japan, and this is because there is not enough demand for these cars.

But WHYYY Honda, WHY?

In North America, we… or especially myself, love the Honda Accord. You have seen this in our posts and our discussion about the options you can do to mod your car. But in Japan, there are just better options for many different reasons. While the Accord might be one of the top 3 cars of their type in North America, there are just so many other options, like the ” the Honda Legend Hybrid EX Honda Sensing Elite” like what is this? How do we not have this here? I know it is just the RLX next-gen, but it can drive itself better than any car we have in North America? 

Just amazing!

Look at these lines, look at the size. This is just the next, way better version of the Accord. This is what the next gen of Accord should have been. Not the weird Civic/Accord mix that we got.

Will Accords still be made in the rest of the world?

With Japan’s recent announcement that they will no longer be selling the Honda Accord, many wonder if this will affect other countries. The Accord has been a popular car for many years, and it’s one of the most popular cars in the world. It’s known for its reliability and its affordable price.

Although it’s not yet known how other countries will be affected by this news, other countries may also follow suit and stop selling the Accord. If this happens, it could mean that the prices of other cars will go up, as the Accord is often used as a benchmark for pricing. It could also mean that consumers will have fewer choices when buying a new car.

Only time will tell how this news will affect the rest of the world, but it’s certainly something to keep an eye on, but honestly, I doubt the rest of the world will give up the Accord because there just isn’t the same number of options with such a stellar history.


Honda has announced that it will no longer sell the Honda Accord in Japan. This decision was made to focus on other markets and models that are more popular in the country. So although the Accord has been a staple model for the company, its declining sales have made it a sinkhole for that country as far as continuing sales efforts. This move by Honda is indicative of the changing market in Japan and the company’s need to adapt to remain successful, but don’t worry, there are going to be a lot of similar cars that we have shown above with that fantastic looking, level 3 self-driving car.