Honda Automobiles: North American Highlights of Mid-Year Speech by Honda Motor Co., Ltd. President & CEO Takanobu Ito

Honda Motor Co., Ltd. President CEO Takanobu Ito today (September 21,
2012) outlined the company’s global and regional business goals in a mid-year
speech in Japan.

On a global basis, he revealed that in the fiscal year ending March 31, 2017,
Honda expects to earn 39 million customers for its automobile, motorcycle and
power equipment products. This annual sales mark would include 25 million
motorcycles, 8 million power equipment products and 6 million automobiles. As
a point of reference, in the fiscal year ended March 31, 2012, Honda earned
more than 23.9 million customers around the world including: 15 million
motorcycles, 5.8 million power products and 3.1 million automobiles.

For a complete summary of the speech, please click here. Following is a
summary of key announcements related to North America:

Automobile Business:

Acura Brand:
The production model of the all-new Acura RLX sedan will debut at the 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show, November 28, 2012.

Honda Sub-Compact Vehicles
Within two years after the initial global market introduction of the all-new Fit
starting in 2013, Honda will globally roll-out Fit, City and a new compact SUV
model. Honda will begin producing Fit and a derivative model at the new plant in Mexico that will become operational in spring 2014.

New Fuel Cell Vehicle
Honda will launch an all-new fuel cell electric model in the U.S., Japan and
Europe starting in 2015. This new fuel cell vehicle will showcase further
technological advancement and significant cost reduction that Honda has

Hybrid Technology
Honda will further advance its “Earth Dreams Technology” in the coming years,
with the introduction of three new hybrid systems based on one-motor, two-motor and three-motor hybrid configurations.

  • One-motor: a lightweight and compact one-motor hybrid system will deliver
    expanded EV driving range through the improvement of motor output and
    battery performance as well as the combination with a newly-developed
    transmission. Honda will strive to achieve number one fuel economy among
    all hybrid vehicles by improving the efficiency of regenerative energy
  • Two-motor: following the U.S. introduction of the Accord Plug-in Hybrid
    Electric (PHEV) model in early 2013, a two-motor hybrid Accord will be
    introduced in the U.S., followed by Japan and other regions.
  • Three-motor: as previously announced, the Sport Hybrid SH-AWD® (Super
    Handling All Wheel Drive) system, a highly efficient and high-output three-motor
    hybrid system, will be applied to the Acura RLX Sport Hybrid model
    and the Acura NSX to realize both a high level of sporty handling and fuel

Increased Regional Product Development of Automobiles
Honda will pursue “concurrent development by all six regions,” where each
region participates in product development concurrently and at the same level
from the early stage of the development. Introducing the same model in all
regions within a short period of time will enable Honda to achieve adequate
production volume on a global basis from an earlier stage of the product
introduction, while significantly reducing the cost of parts sourcing.

NOTE: in August of this year, Honda announced that the company’s U.S. RD
operations will lead development of the North American version of the next
generation Honda Civic.

Motorcycle Business:

The first of a new series of large-sized models based on a new concept for both daily commuting weekend touring will go on sale next year on a global basis, beginning from North America. Key characteristics will include stylish design, a “torqueful” engine, low seat height for a comfortable ride and high stability in maneuvering.

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