Production of the Acura MDX luxury SUV has been added to the East Liberty Auto Plant (ELP) in Ohio – it becomes the second US plant to build the car. ELP joins Honda Manufacturing of Alabama in Lincoln, Ala. in producing the MDX.
With the addition of MDX production at ELP, five of Acura’s six products are now built in Ohio. The MDX joins its stable mate, the RDX sport-utility vehicle, at ELP, while associates at the Marysville Auto Plant build the TLX and ILX luxury sedans. The Acura NSX is also produced exclusively at the Performance Manufacturing Centre in Marysville – ‘the only supercar built in America’, Honda says.
ELP invested US$85m for the addition of new welding equipment, the extension of vehicle conveyors and other changes required to support production of the MDX, and will assume sole production of the MDX this fall. This will enable the Alabama plant to increase production of the Honda Pilot, helping both the Acura and Honda brands meet increased customer demand for their respective light truck models.
“From our startup three decades ago producing small sedans to the three different light trucks we build today, our associates continue to demonstrate the skills needed for high quality and flexible manufacturing,” said Tim Myers, East Liberty Auto Plant manager. “I’m proud of the commitment of our team to take on new challenges to meet the needs of our customers.”
The refreshed and restyled 2017 Acura MDX was introduced last year with an expanded complement of features and technologies, including the AcuraWatch suite of advanced safety and driver-assistive technologies, now offered as standard equipment on all 2017 MDX models, a claimed first in the luxury SUV segment.
ELP also produces the Honda CR-V, and served as the global lead plant in several key areas for the recent launch of the all-new 2017 CR-V.The plant employs 2,350 associates and has the annual capacity to manufacture 240,000 passenger cars and light trucks. The 2.8m square foot plant started production in December 1989.