Tokyo, Japan: Honda Motor Company plans to end vehicle production at its Sayama plant in Japan by March 2022, cutting domestic capacity by around 24 percent as it shifts focus to electric vehicles (EVs) and other new technologies.
The move will reduce the automaker’s overall domestic annual production capacity to around 810,000 units from 1.06 million units. Its global annual production would remain largely unchanged around 5.06 million units.
“Domestic sales haven’t increased as much as we were expecting and it has become difficult to boost exports,” said Takahiro Hachigo, chief executive officer, Honda. “As we focus more on adopting electrification and other new technologies, we want to hone our vehicle manufacturing expertise in Japan and expand it globally.”
Mr Hachigo has been trying to strengthen a culture of innovation at the company, after a number of major product recalls in recent years. The move to shift production to the Yorii facility is to accommodate production of electrified vehicles that are equipped with new technologies.
The majority of the workers currently at the Sayama plant would be transferred to its Yorii plant, also in Japan. The plant, which was built in 2013, is Honda’s latest domestic plant. It also has an annual production capacity of 250,000 units, and currently makes smaller models, including the Fit compact hatchback and the Civic sedan.