Honda of America Manufacturing (HAM) reached a major milestone last week when its 10 millionth North American-assembled vehicle rolled off the line in Marysville, Ohio.

Car production began in Ohio in 1982 and Honda now builds more than one million vehicles every year in North America. It also produces V6 and four-cylinder engines and automatic transmissions.

With a recent production increase in Alliston, Ontario, Canada, Honda's annual North American vehicle production capacity will rise to 1.18 million units by 2003 - 20,000 units above the previously announced target of 1.16 million.

Honda will open its 11th North American plant in Lincoln, Alabama, this autumn to produce both the Odyssey and V6 engines.

In 2000, more than 75 percent of all Honda and Acura vehicles sold in America were produced and assembled there.

The North American operations are also now a major part of the company's global production strategy with eight models - the Accord and Civic coupes, Civic GX natural gas vehicle, Odyssey and the Acura TL, CL, MDX and EL - produced exclusively there.

American Honda has also exported more than 600,000 cars to more than 90 countries.

Honda's ongoing introduction of its flexible New Manufacturing System has also helped expand the role of the North American plants.

The key attribute of this new production system is flexibility - both in terms of the relative ease with which multiple models can be built in a single factory and the number of different plants that can build the same models.

With the launch of the 2001 Civic, the New Manufacturing System was introduced at the East Liberty plant in Ohio and the Alliston plant in Ontario, Canada. Installation of the new system has also begun at the Marysville plant in Ohio.

Growing production has also meant increased opportunities for local suppliers. Honda currently buys from more than 480 suppliers, and on a global basis, purchased more than $US8.77 billion in parts and materials in North America last year.

Honda began manufacturing motorcycles in Marysville in 1979, using local and imported parts. It now employs more than 13,000 workers - called 'associates' - at four different Ohio facilities: the Marysville car and motorcycle plants, the East Liberty car plant and the Anna engine plant.

With an annual car production capacity of 670,000 units, HAM now produces the Accord sedan and coupe, Civic sedan, coupe and GX and the Acura TL and CL.

To date, HAM has produced almost eight million vehicles. Producing more than 1 million car engines per year, HAM also provides engines to plants in Canada, Mexico and other countries.

Honda began car production at HCM in Canada in 1986, focusing primarily on the Civic until 1998 when the Alliston plant launched the Odyssey minivan on its second production line.

In autumn 2000, the No. 2 line added production of Acura's MDX sport utility vehicle and boosted daily capacity from 650 to 700 units. Last month, production increased from 700 to 750 units per day.

HCM now has an annual capacity of 350,000 units, employing 4,000 associates. To date, HCM has produced almost two million vehicles.

Honda de Mexico (HDM) began assembling vehicles in 1995 and produces Accord sedans primarily for the Mexican market using engines from the Anna engine plant in Ohio. To date, HDM has produced more than 46,000 units.

Later this year, Honda Manufacturing of Alabama (HMA) will begin production with an annual capacity of 120,000 vehicles and engines.

When completed, HMA will increase Honda's capital investment in North America to more than $US6 billion and increase employment to more than 25,000 associates.


To view related research reports, please follow the links below:-

Global Car Forecasts to 2005

Honda Strategic Review