Honda expecting U.S. sales to rise 25 percent this year despite Sandy image

Honda expects its U.S. sales to rise for the remainder of the year, with deliveries expected to increase 25 percent in 2012 despite damage caused by Hurricane Sandy in October.

Honda U.S. sales chief John Mendel said the carmaker expects to deliver almost 1.46 million Honda and Acura vehicles this year in the U.S., up from 1.15 million a year ago. Honda’s October sales rose by only 8.8 percent, compared with the 16 percent average gain of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

“November will be a pretty good month for us – I see nothing different in November and December that will change the course of where we’ve been this year,” Mendel said. The executive estimated Honda brand sales in 2012 should be within 10,000 to 12,000 units of 1.3 million, with the Acura brand at around 160,000.

Honda, the No. 2 Japanese automaker by U.S. sales, saw demand for its cars and trucks in the U.S. boosted by new models, such as the redesigned CR-V crossover and the restyled Accord sedan. Demand was also helped by a record production at Honda’s North American plants that were slowed last year by parts shortages caused by natural disasters in Asia.

The U.S. is Honda’s largest market.