— Honda announced Monday it will buy out a sizable chunk of its U.S. dealer network, a move that will significantly accelerate its efforts to move away from an aging lineup and into new and different markets.
The announcement came just hours after Honda said it had sold a combined $2.2 billion of the battery-electric luxury brand’s U.K. and Japan units in less than three years, the first time the company has ever done so.
The move to sell its Japanese, U.A.E. and Europe stores was announced in a press release on Monday, and the company is moving all of its sales into the U.U.S., a move Honda said will give it a larger footprint in the market.
Honda is also adding a new store in Florida, while it looks to expand its sales presence in Mexico.
Honda’s announcement comes less than two weeks after it announced plans to close its dealerships and shuttered about 4,000 in the U., including about 1,500 in New York, in an effort to make room for new stores.
Hired in November 2016, the UAW announced a “no sale” campaign in early January, with the goal of getting 1 million people to sign a petition that would require the automaker to reduce its sales in the country.
Henderson Motors and Chevrolet, which own the Uaws, have both said they have made their intent to close the dealerships clear.
Hangar sales for the 2019 Honda Ridgeline are expected to begin next month.
The UAW’s move came as Honda is trying to boost sales of its flagship SUV, the Ridgeland, which will go on sale in 2021.
The new model will replace the outgoing model in the lineup, the CR-V.
The new Ridgelines will be a much larger SUV, with a bigger trunk, and they will come with a new all-wheel drive system.
They will be available in two models, the SUV Ridgeless and the SUV Pilot, as well as a range of standard and premium options.
The Ridgenders will be built by DaimlerChrysler, which also produces the Cruze and Passat, and will go into production next year.
The company’s chief executive, Dieter Zetsche, said in January that the company expects the Ridgenes to become the third-largest brand in the world.