Indiana expanded space for Insight front end module sub-assembly, a process introduced with 2016 Civic and since extended to Accord in Ohio and the CR-V also made in Indiana

Indiana expanded space for Insight front end module sub-assembly, a process introduced with 2016 Civic and since extended to Accord in Ohio and the CR-V also made in Indiana

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Honda has started mass production of its new 2019 Insight hybrid in Indiana, also announcing US$61.5m in new capital investment in Indiana and Ohio for production of this latest electrified vehicle.

The automaker said previously two-thirds of its global auto sales would be electrified by around 2030. Under this Honda Electrification Initiative, the company plans to introduce electrified powertrains to virtually all of its core models in the years ahead.

Honda Manufacturing of Indiana (HMIN) is the lead plant for Insight production globally and will build all Insight models for North America. $32.5m was spent to start production. Three Ohio plants contribute the Insight's powertrain. Honda Transmission Manufacturing of America (HTM), in Russells Point, Ohio, has spent $29m for production of the Insight's twin electric motor unit, the hybrid battery pack is assembled at the company's Marysville, Ohio auto plant, which also produces the just-launched 2019 Accord Hybrid. The Insight's 1.5-litre Atkinson-cycle petrol engine is produced at the company's Anna, Ohio engine plant.

Among the changes made to the Indiana plant for Insight production is a new 19,200 sq ft building expansion to accommodate in-house sub-assembly of the vehicle's front end module. This modular approach to the construction of the vehicle's front frame and associated components, such as the radiator and cooling fan, was first introduced on the 2016 Civic and is now employed for the Accord and CR-V as well. The new Insight marks the first time the Indiana plant is sub-assembling the front end module in-house. Other new processes for the Insight include the installation of electrified vehicle systems such as high-voltage wiring, the battery unit and power control system.

HMIN will now produce the Insight, Civic and CR-V on the same production line. This is not the first time that HMIN has demonstrated the flexibility to manufacture multiple vehicles and hybrid models. From April 2012 to November 2014, the plant was the exclusive manufacturing home for the Acura ILX hybrid, which was transferred to Marysville in 2015. HMIN also previously produced the Civic Natural Gas, at the time, the only mass-produced natural gas-powered passenger car in America.

The Insight – on sale in summer – is the fifth electrified Honda model launched in the US in the past 18 months, following the introduction of the Clarity Series and Accord Hybrid.