Friday, February 28, 2014

Honda Increases North American Manufacturing Footprintat at New Auto Plant in Mexico

Honda continued the expansion of its manufacturing operations in North America today, by celebrating the production start of the redesigned 2015 Honda Fit at a new, technologically-advanced automobile plant of Honda de Mexico, S.A. de C.V. (HDM). The new plant in North America will increase Honda's ability to meet customer demand for fuel-efficient subcompact models from within the region. Honda celebrated with an event attended by Enrique Pena Nieto, president of Mexico, and Takanobu Ito, president & CEO of Honda Motor Co., Ltd.
The start-up of the Celaya Plant increases Honda's annual automobile production capacity in North America to approximately 1.92 million units. In 2013, more than 90 percent of the Honda and Acura automobiles sold in the U.S. were produced in North America; this is expected to exceed 95 percent when the Celaya plant reaches full capacity.
Located in Celaya, Guanajuato, the US$800 million plant began production less than two years after construction started in early 2012, and will employ 3,200 associates with an annual capacity of 200,000 vehicles and engines when it reaches full production later this year. In addition to the 2015 Honda Fit, the plant will begin production late this year of an all-new compact SUV.
"Our new plant in Mexico is based on the Honda Company Principle of maintaining a global viewpoint to supply products of the highest quality, yet at a reasonable price, for worldwide customer satisfaction," said Ito. "In Celaya, we can see these core values in action, with a commitment to the highest quality and efficiency and a focus on creating joy for our customers."
The Celaya plant, designed exclusively for the production of subcompact vehicles, features a number of Honda's most advanced manufacturing technologies in the world, including several that were first introduced last year at Honda's new Yorii Plant in Japan, to increase quality and efficiency and reduce the plant's environmental footprint. Key technologies include:
  • A high-speed servo stamping press and adoption of a high-speed die change process that increases the efficiency of the stamping process by approximately 40%.

  • An all-new, highly efficient general welder system, which joins the vehicle body panels together, achieves a major reduction in the number of welding robots, while increasing the number of weld points for higher quality and efficiency.

  • A new 3-coat/2-bake, water-based painting process (replacing the traditional 4-coat/3-bake process) to reduce energy consumption during the painting process by approximately 40%, while enhancing paint finish quality.

  • A highly efficient production line intended to reduce the time and space for assembly processes, that includes a reduction in heavy-lifting processes for improved associate ergonomics, an increase of in-plant sub-assembly processes and new strategies that ensure both more efficient and more precise vehicle assembly.

  • LED lighting was installed throughout the plant and vehicle yard to reduce energy usage.
Together with the new $470 million transmission plant now under construction at the same site in Celaya, the new auto plant will play a significant role in the region as Honda's North American operations take on increasing responsibilities within global Honda for product development, production and sales activities. The new transmission plant in Celaya is expected to begin production of continuously variable transmissions (CVT) in the second half of 2015, with employment of approximately 1,500 associates.
The new plants will boost Honda's capital investment in its North American operations to more than US$21 billion. Honda employs more than 33,000 associates in North America. Production operations related to automobiles also include four auto plants, two auto engine production facilities and two transmission plants in the United States, and two auto plants and an auto engine plant in Canada.
The Celaya Auto Plant is Honda de Mexico's second auto plant. The first plant, located near Guadalajara, was established in El Salto, Jalisco in 1995. The valuable experience of HDM associates from the El Salto plant is now being utilized to support the successful startup of Celaya operations. The El Salto operations also have helped increase the localization of supplied parts from Mexico that now is being more fully integrated into Honda's North American and global supply network.
Honda unveiled the 2015 Fit for the U.S. market at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit last month. Set to go on sale in the U.S. this spring, the all-new Fit is completely redesigned from the ground up to deliver an unparalleled combination of style, interior space, fun-to-drive performance and fuel efficiency, together with leading-edge safety and vehicle connectivity.
About Honda
Honda began automobile production in the U.S. in 1982. It now operates 15 major manufacturing facilities in North America, producing a wide range of Honda and Acura automobiles, automobile engines and transmissions, Honda all-terrain vehicles, and power equipment products such as lawn mowers, mini-tillers and general purpose engines, using domestic and globally sourced parts.
This includes eight Honda auto plants in the North American region that have the capacity to produce 1.92 million automobiles each year, using domestic and globally sourced parts.
About Honda de Mexico
HDM was established in September 1985, and began sales of motorcycle products in 1987. In March 1988, HDM started production of motorcycle products and automobile service parts in El Salto, Jalisco. An adjacent auto production plant opened in 1995 with production of the Honda Accord, switching to production of the Honda CR-V in 2007. HDM's current annual auto production capacity is 63,000 units.

Source: Honda Media Newsroom

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Four Honda Vehicles Named to List of Top Family-Friendly Cars

While there’s no question that certain Honda models make great everyday commuter vehicles, San Diego Honda drivers aren’t just individuals going to and from work every day; they’re also people that are toting around spouses and children and parents and friends, so we’re very proud of the fact that so many of our dealership's vehicles make such great family cars.

Honda, GM Fuel-Cell Partnership Wants to Reduce Hydrogen Refueling Costs

by:Danny King

To paraphrase the old political adage, it's the cost, stupid. Dollar signs are what's prompting Honda and General Motors to partner up to accelerate development of a hydrogen fuel cell system. With about half the cost of a fuel-cell system tied up in its fuel-cell stack, GM and Honda are looking to help each other drive costs down, according to a presentation by GM fuel cell research and development director Mark Mathias said in a presentation at the SAE 2014 Hybrid & Electric Vehicle Technologies Symposium.

According to Green Car Congress, Honda and GM are looking to reap the fruits of their collective labor by 2020. As with other automakers, the high cost of producing fuel-cell vehicles is the fly in the ointment of a powertrain technology that combines the same range as gas-powered vehicles but with zero emissions. In the meantime, Honda, which makes the very limited production FCX Clarity fuel-cell vehicle, is slated to start selling its own mass-market fuel-cell vehicle in 2015.

The two automakers made their partnership announcement last summer and said they contribute to expanding hydrogen fuel infrastructure in California during the next few years. Earlier, Ford, Mercedes-Benz parent Daimler and Nissan also said they would work together to speed up fuel-cell technology development.

Source: Autoblog

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Honda Says Accord is America's Best-Selling Car Among Actual Consumers

by:Brandon Turkus

The latest round of new vehicle registration data has been good for Honda - three of the Japanese brand's models are retail sales leaders and the Accord was the most registered car built in America in 2013, according to the data compiled by Polk. In fact, 360,089 units of the family sedan were purchased by individual consumers last year, an increase of 12.2 percent.

There was also good news from the Civic and CR-V camps, as those two models topped their respective segments in terms of retail (non-fleet) sales, with each notching over 300,000 registrations. Combined with the Accord, this trio of Hondas accounted for a whopping 1.11 million retail sales last year.

Honda spokesperson Sage Marie reflected on Polk's findings, telling Autoblog:
"Since it reflects actual consumer choice, it's a better measure of how competitive a product is in the marketplace. Honda's strategy of avoiding fleet sales bolsters residual values and reduces the cost of ownership for our customers."
Honda has long touted its avoidance of fleet sales in favor of individual retail sales, and in light of this latest news from Polk, the strategy appears to be working for the brand quite well.
Show full PR text
U.S. Car Shoppers Propel Honda Accord to #1 in Retail Sales in 2013; Four Honda Models Take Best-in-Class Leadership based on Polk New-Vehicle Registrations

Honda Accord, Civic, CR-V and Odyssey each topped their segment in registrations to individual retail car buyers in 2013
Three Honda models recorded retail sales of more than 300,000 units
More Accords are built in the U.S. than any other car in 2013

The Honda Accord was the best-selling car with individual American car buyers in 2013 and was joined by three other Honda models – the Civic, CR-V, and Odyssey – as retail sales leaders in their respective segments in 2013, according to new-vehicle registration data compiled by Polk, which was recently acquired by IHS. The Accord, built in Marysville, Ohio1, was the No. 1 produced car in America in 2013.

Cumulatively, the Accord, Civic, CR-V and Odyssey posted retail sales of more than 1.11 million units in 2013, each earning the business of more than 300,000 individual American car buyers. Excluding full-size pickups, only one other model across the entire industry posted retail sales of more than 300,000 units in 2013.

"Our focus on retail sales to individual buyers has a direct correlation to the high resale value of Honda products, which is a key factor in the value proposition for our customers," said John Mendel, executive vice president of automobile sales for American Honda Motor Co., Inc. "We want to thank car buyers for making four Honda vehicles America's top choices, purchased one car at a time."

Additional highlights from the Polk /IHS Automotive data included:

Honda's 2013 retail sales rose 8.4 percent from year-ago totals to 1,332,576 Honda cars and light trucks
Individual sales to retail car buyers made up 98.1 percent of all American Honda sales in 2013, compared to an average of 81.7 percent for all other non-luxury vehicles
Accord retail sales in 2013 rose 12.2 percent to 360,089
In addition to being retail sales leaders, both the Civic and CR-V ranked as the overall best-selling models in their respective segments for the third consecutive year, and both saw retail sales and registrations jump 8.2 percent in 2013
The Odyssey also captured an impressive 32.2 percent of the U.S. retail registrations for minivans in 2013, selling nearly 25,000 more vehicles than the nearest competitor in the segment
Honda has been named the Most Trusted Brand by Kelley Blue Book for two consecutive years (2012 and 2013) and the Best Value Brand by Automotive Lease Guide for six years in a row (2008 through 2013), in part due to the consistently high resale value of its products.

About Honda
Honda offers a full line of reliable, fuel-efficient and fun-to-drive automobiles for American car buyers through approximately 1,000 independent U.S. Honda dealers. The Honda lineup includes the Accord, Crosstour, Civic, Fit, CR-Z, Insight and FCX Clarity passenger cars along with the Pilot, Odyssey and CR-V sport-utility vehicles, the Ridgeline pickup and the Odyssey minivan. Honda has the highest brand fuel economy2, the most top safety-rated3 vehicles and the longest-lasting cars4 of any mainstream automotive brand in America. Honda also has been producing automobiles in America for more than 30 years and currently operates 15 major manufacturing facilities in North America. In 2013, more than 94 percent of all Honda and Acura vehicles sold in U.S. were made in North America using domestic and globally sourced parts.
Source: Autoblog

Friday, February 21, 2014

Honda Improves in 2014 J.D. Power Dependability Study

The J.D. Power & Associates Dependability study is an invaluable tool for consumers looking into buying a used or certified pre-owned vehicle, and the good news for those consumers over the course of the last few years has been that dependability has been on the rise.

This year, the industry average score for dependability dropped, however, which is all media has really focused on in terms of what’s relevant in the new study. We here at Pacific Honda feel like it’s worth pointing out that Honda was one of only a few automakers to actually see dependability scores improve for 2014.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Guys Get Creative With "No Diggity" In A Civic


People do some weird things in their cars. Take these two gentlemen and their Honda Civic. Rather than tune in to satellite radio or hook up an iPod, they've opted to create their own music......

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Honda Civic Type R Concept To Hatch In Geneva

by: Brandon Turkus

As if the Geneva Motor Show isn't exciting enough, now we have word that a new version of a certain iconic Japanese hot hatch will make an appearance there in a few weeks time. Honda has announced that its Civic Type R Concept will be revealed during the show's media days, which take place March 4 and 5.

Since this is Honda we're talking about, we should point out that the "Concept" part of the Civic Type R's name is usually a bit of a misnomer. For the past few years, the Japanese automaker has made a habit of attaching "Concept" to the end of several near-production models in the name of drumming up auto show excitement (see Exhibits A, B, C, D and E). So really, this is almost certainly the next Civic Type R, a car we've kind of already driven.

The latter car was a "development" model, but we aren't expecting a lot to change between it and the production model. As previously reported, a 2.0-liter, turbocharged engine should deliver north of 280 horsepower to the front wheels via a six-speed gearbox. Have a look up top at the sole image of the hot Civic released by Honda, and then scroll down for the official press release.
Show full PR text
                                                   OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE

Honda has revealed its 2014 Geneva Motor Show line-up, including the worldwide debut of the Civic Type R Concept model, the European debut of the Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle (FCEV) Concept, the powertrain layout of the new NSX and the 2014 Civic World Touring Car Championship race car.

Racing Car for the Road – Civic Type R Concept
Honda's appearance at the 2014 Geneva Motorshow will lead with the worldwide reveal of the Civic Type R Concept model, providing the styling direction for the exterior design of the highly-anticipated production version that debuts in 2015. Dubbed by the design team as a 'racing car for the road', its bold and expressive styling reflects the strong performance characteristics for which Type R is renowned.

Advanced Technology Leadership – FCEV Concept
Further underlining Honda's leadership in the development of advanced technology, the FCEV Concept makes its first European appearance. Sleek and aerodynamic, the Concept points to the potential styling direction of Honda's next-generation fuel cell electric vehicle which launches in the U.S. and Japan in 2015, followed by Europe.

Further Evolution – Honda NSX
In another Motorshow debut, Honda will highlight the powertrain layout of the new NSX supercar. The model showcases the longitudinal, V6 direct injection engine with twin turbo alongside Honda's innovative 3 motor Sport Hybrid SH-AWD® (Super Handling All Wheel Drive™) hybrid system.

Racing Spirit – 2014 Civic World Touring Car Championship livery
Following victory in the Manufacturers' Championship of the 2013 World Touring Car Championship, Honda will also reveal the livery of the 2014 Civic WTCC car. Additionally it will showcase its long history in Formula One with the RA271 that competed in 1964 making its debut in the German Grand Prix at the Nurburgring and the record-breaking turbo-charged RA168E engine which dominated the 1988 season.

The Honda Press Conference will take place at 14:15 CET on Tuesday 4th March on the Honda stand (4250).

Friday, February 14, 2014

2014 Honda Odyssey, Civic Make Kiplinger's List of "Best Values"

It’s growing increasingly challenging in today’s world to find real “values.” In other words, when consumers spend money on something, they do so with the understanding that the amount of money spent is equal to the quality of goods being purchased. However, people want their money to do better than just “equal;” they want to find values, where what their spending is actually disproportionate to the monumental worth of the thing they’re buying.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Honda Builds Custom Civic Si Based On Forza Motorsport Design Contest

by: Brandon Turkus

Forza Motorsport games are known for a few things, one of which is the extensive range of customization options available for each car. Gamers have complete control over the look and size of wheels, window tints, paints and decals, as well as various different finishes. For Forza Motorsport 5, players even have access to carbon fiber, gold, chrome, brass and camouflaged finishes.

To celebrate this, Honda held a little contest among gamers that challenged them to prepare a custom Civic Si. The winner would see their design applied to an actual car and shown at the 2014 Chicago Auto Show. This is that car. Designed by Tiffany Labedz, it was one of 170 entries in the Forza Motorsport Civic Si Design Contest. It took the title, with 17,000 votes from members of the Forza community.

Take a look up top for our live gallery, and then down below for the press release and images of the car from the press conferences as well as in Forza Horizon.
Show full PR text
Honda Wows Windy City with Real-Life Custom Forza Civic Si Coupe

Winning entry from the Forza Motorsport Civic Si Design Contest brought from the virtual world to the real world at Chicago Auto Show
One-of-a-kind Civic Si Coupe is the first vehicle to feature a design from the Forza Motorsport community
New Honda Legends Car Pack with 2014 Civic Si now available for Forza Motorsport 5 on Xbox One

Honda teamed up with Forza Motorsport, the world's hottest racing game franchise, to unveil the winning entry of the Forza Motorsport Civic Si Design Contest at the 2014 Chicago Auto Show. Selected from nearly 170 entries, the winning 2014 Civic Si Coupe design was created by Forza gamer Tiffany Labedz of Phoenix, Arizona and was selected as the top design by more than 17,000 members of the Xbox Forza community. This one-of-a-kind Civic is among the first vehicles from the Forza Motorsport community to be brought from virtual world to the real world.

"At Honda, we love meeting our customers where their passion lies, and the racing and custom car design in Forza Motorsport is definitely a passion for so many Honda and Civic enthusiasts," said Tom Peyton, assistant vice president of advertising with American Honda Motor Co., Inc. "Taking an immersive gaming experience like Forza and bringing it to life here at the Chicago Auto Show will make for an exciting exhibition and a real-life demonstration of how cars and gaming are increasingly intertwined."

In addition to the custom Civic on display, Chicago Auto Show attendees can be among the first to play the new Honda Legends Car Pack for Forza Motorsport 5 on Xbox One. The new car pack features the redesigned 2014 Civic Si Coupe, the 1984 Mugen CRX and the 1994 Prelude, all available for download on Xbox One. This is the second straight year that Honda and Forza Motorsport have teamed up to bring gamers exclusive Honda-branded content.

"The passion and creativity of Forza Motorsport fans is a continuous source of inspiration to us," said Alan Hartman, studio manager for Turn 10 Studios, the makers of the Forza Motorsport series. "Seeing cars like the design contest-winning Honda Civic come to life on stage at the Chicago Auto Show is a testament to the power of the Forza Motorsport franchise to fuel creative expression among car lovers and videogame fans."

For more information on the entire 2014 Civic lineup, customers can visit

About Honda
Honda has been making reliable, fuel-efficient and fun-to-drive automobiles for American car buyers for more than more than 40 years. Honda has the highest fuel economy1, the most top safety-rated2 vehicles and the longest-lasting cars3 of any mainstream automotive brand in America. Honda has also been producing automobiles in America for more than 30 years and currently operates 14 major manufacturing facilities in North America, In 2013, more than 95 percent of all Honda vehicles sold in the U.S. were made in North America.
Source: Autoblog

Friday, February 7, 2014

Honda Leads All Automakers in Top Safety Pick+ Vehicles

It’s pretty incredible to think that there was a time not that long ago when cars weren’t required to have seatbelts installed. Earlier models of vehicles didn’t even have windshield wipers, which seem like the simplest of safety features an automobile could have.

Today, though, safety is more advanced (and more important) than ever, and automakers like Honda are doing an excellent job making sure that drivers are as safe as possible when behind the wheel of a vehicle. Crash tests performed by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety have shown just how adept today’s cars, trucks, and SUVs are at avoiding catastrophe in case of an accident.