Automobiles and Motorcycles
In America, automobiles are generally defined as four-wheeled vehicles that can carry a number of people. However, the term can be used to describe a variety of different vehicle types. It’s common to hear people say that a motorcycle is an automobile.
Automobiles are a form of transportation that have a rear engine and four wheels, and can carry a large number of passengers. They can also be equipped with accessories, including side cars. Motorcycles can be customized and built to suit a person’s individual needs. Choosing a motorcycle can be a fun way to take regular road trips.
The automobile industry flourished in Europe after World War II. After WWII, the United States was home to a few manufacturers, namely General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler. These three automakers were known as the “Big Three” in the U.S. But in Japan, automobile production grew tremendously.
By the late 1950s, Japanese automakers had already established a sales network in the U.S., and were shipping Honda products to the west coast. At the time, the American motorcycle market was about one tenth the size of the Japanese one. Several competing manufacturers were vying for a share of that territory.
The United States was known as the Land of the Automobile. However, local opinion makers had doubts that Japan could produce enough motorcycles. Some suggested that the company could enlist the help of a trading firm.
Nonetheless, the company decided to go it alone, and began the process of relocating to the west coast. Initially, all of its divisions were located in Gardena, California, although it was not until 1963 that American Honda relocated to Torrance, California. This move was a necessary step in order for the company to begin building a sales network in the U.S. Although the company had been able to sell 170 units in its first year, there were still many obstacles to overcome before it would be able to achieve its full potential.
A few years later, in 1961, Honda’s sales topped 1,000 units a month. Nevertheless, the company knew the road ahead would be a challenging one. That’s why the company launched a new ad campaign for its Super Cub. Unlike its competitors, the Super Cub featured a quiet four-stroke engine, a streamlined design that looked like a beetle, and an attractive front cover.
Honda’s ads included colorful images of cheerful people on their bikes, and they ran in motorcycle and general interest magazines. This was a clear indication of the brand’s determination to make the most of its presence in the U.S. Compared to the outlaw motorcycle image of the past, these ads were a refreshing change.
Eventually, the company was able to sell N600 models in the mainland and Hawaii. As the company grew and the sales network widened, the company also began donating motorcycles to YMCA chapters throughout the country.
During the 1970s, the company also became involved in a user survey program. The results of these studies helped the company improve its entire product line. One of the programs’ most important results was bringing the Prelude to America in 1979. Since then, Honda has expanded its user surveys to countries around the world.