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Honda Motor Co. said Friday it will raise annual groupwide car sales to 3 million in fiscal 2003, up about 20 percent from the current volume.

Unveiling its midterm corporate strategy, President Hiroyuki Yoshino also said its group sales are expected to reach 7 trillion yen in the 2003 business year, compared with 6.1 trillion yen in fiscal 1999.

By region, the company set fiscal 2003 targets for annual vehicle sales at 900,000 in Japan, up 200,000 from the present volume, 1.45 million cars in North America, up 150,000, 350,000 cars in Europe, up 100,000, and 300,000 in other parts of the world, up 80,000.

Japan’s second-largest automaker plans to achieve the goals by introducing 20 new models, most of which will be sport-utility vehicles, and reducing production costs by 100 billion yen, or about 20 percent, Yoshino said.

Honda hopes to produce about 60 percent of its vehicles in foreign countries to reduce the effects of strong local currencies, he said.

To help cope with environmental problems, Honda will add a hybrid gasoline-electric engine to the Civic compact and sell the new model in Japan in 2001. The company marketed its first hybrid car last year.

As for motorcycles, Honda set its target for sales in 2003 at 7 million units, up 59 percent from fiscal 1999, by introducing new 50cc models, Yoshino said.

Yoshino reiterated that Honda is not considering capital tieups with foreign carmakers to achieve the goals although it will develop business partnerships with them.