Honda Motor said on Monday it has invested $267 million and will add 300 new jobs to support boosted production of its revamped 2018 Accord sedan model at the automaker’s plant located in Marysville, Ohio.
Honda revealed the newest-generation Accord in July, among four re-engineered midsize sedans that Asian automakers are betting on to win market share as Detroit competitors shift focus to SUVs, crossovers and pickup.
The brand-new Accord, like rival Toyota Motor’s all-new Camry, uses more horsepower, security innovation like basic collision-avoiding braking and better fuel economy although Honda did not provide figures.
Honda’s investment in Ohio includes $220 million for the Marysville plant, consisting of a new $165 million welding department with 342 welding robots. The automaker is likewise investing $47 million at its Anna, Ohio, engine plant to offer turbocharged engines for the Accord.
The Marysville plant also develops the Acura TLX, a luxury midsize sedan, and the Acura ILX, a luxury compact sedan. With the recent financial investments the plant will have a capability of 440,000 vehicles a year and can include volume for the Accord as essential, Steve Rodriguez, Honda’s manufacturing leader for the Accord, informed press reporters on a conference call on Monday.
Ray Mikiciuk, Honda assistant vice president for sales, stated the automaker is not giving a sales forecast for the Accord, but added “I do not anticipate to sell less Accords in 2018 with this great new product.”
Honda’s announcement follows Toyota’s last month that it would take a 5 percent stake in smaller sized Japanese rival Mazda Motor as part of an alliance that will include a $1.6 billion U.S. assembly plant and cooperation on electric vehicles.
The plant came as surprise for investors at a time of deteriorating U.S. new automobile sales.
It also stands in contrast to new moves by General Motors and Ford Motor. Confronted with decreasing sedan sales, GM has slashed the third shift at a number of its plants.