A new Acura branded financial services company is created by Honda Financial Services to enhance the customer experience of the luxury brand.
New Finance Company
Here at Auto Credit Express, we realize that it's not every day that a new finance company is created. Given the current economic climate, we're more likely to see a finance company pitching its tent and walking away rather than face rising losses in the automotive lending sector.
So it came as quite a surprise yesterday when American Honda Finance Corporation announced that it was creating a totally separate financial entity to cater to customers of its luxury Acura brand.
Here is the press release from AHFC:
Dedicated Acura Financial Services Launched
TORRANCE, Calif., 04/23/2009 - American Honda Finance Corp. (AHFC) this week launched Acura-branded financial services to better satisfy the needs of Acura dealers and customers. The creation of Acura Financial Services (AFS) marks a major milestone in Acura history. This is just the first step of a multifaceted effort to further enhance customer service and raise the brand image for Acura, the luxury nameplate that pioneered the launch of Japanese luxury automobiles in the U.S.
"With our most recent ranking in the top two, three and four positions in the luxury lease segment of the 2008 J.D. Power and Associates Consumer Financing Satisfaction Study, the timing is perfect to utilize our years of experience and expertise to create financial services that will meet the needs of Acura clients," said Stephen E. Smith, senior vice president of AHFC. "The creation of separate Acura-branded financial services parallels other moves to strengthen and differentiate the Acura luxury brand."
About American Honda Finance Corporation
American Honda Finance Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of American Honda Motor Co., Inc., is the captive finance provider of consumer financial products for Honda and Acura automobiles, sport utility vehicles, trucks, minivans, Honda motorcycles, Honda power equipment, and Honda marine products. In addition, AHFC also provides Honda and Acura dealerships with vehicle floorplan programs, real estate, construction and capital loans, revolving lines of credit and inventory insurance.
The Bottom Line
Given the current economic climate, the creation of a separate finance company for Acura is a gutsy move on the part of AHFC. It seems, however, that Honda believes it is the right move at the right time. According to an article that appeared in Automotive News, Steve Center, American Honda VP of Advertising felt that the benefits of an Acura-branded finance company outweighed any anticipated disadvantages.