Honda Motor Co., Japan's third-largest auto maker, and its U.S.-based sales arm is being sued by a rival who claims Honda has monopolized the market for replacement parts for its automobiles.
Honda and American Honda Motor Co. allegedly overcharged Honda dealers for replacement service parts while locking out competitors, according to a lawsuit filed Wednesday by Europacific Parts International Inc. in Newport Beach.
Hondas are among the best-selling cars in the U.S. Honda and its Acura division have sold 520,092 cars and light trucks in the U.S. this year, up by 6.6% over the same period in 1998.
"The extraordinary demand for Honda automobiles and Honda dealerships has given American Honda the power to raise prices above competitive levels in the United States market for automobile dealerships," Europacific said in the suit filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court.
Europacific, a distributor, is seeking a court order that would require Honda and American Honda to publicly state that Europacific's parts are comparable to American Honda's.