The Hawai'i Auto Outlook report released recently noted a lower-than-average increase in new vehicle registration in the state. The slump in sales was blamed on the lowering of production rates at Honda and Toyota after last year's Japan earthquake and floods that inundated Thailand.
New vehicle registration was up just 4.4 percent last year, which is well below the national average of 14 percent. The Hawai'i Dealers Association also attributes this to the high cost of fuel in the state. Toyota was the top-selling brand of vehicle in the state. Maui reported an 18.3 percent increase in vehicle sales, which was the largest increase statewide. Hawai'i Island had a 2.9 percent drop and O'ahu increased by 3.89 percent. Kaua'i increased by 7.8 percent.