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|Honda Motor President Attends Milestone Ceremony At Honda Canada’s Vehicle Assembly Plant in Ontario
Event Marks Production Start of All-New 2007 Acura MDX on Eve of Plant’s 20th Anniversary in Canada
|TORONTO, Canada, September 6, 2006–Honda's President and CEO, Takeo Fukui, attended a special ceremony at Honda of Canada Mfg. (HCM) commemorating the start of production of the new 2007 Acura MDX luxury sport-utility vehicle scheduled to go on sale across Canada mid-October.
“At Honda, the power of dreams is about having both a dream and the determination to turn it into reality,” said Mr. Fukui.“In 1986, we became the first Japanese company to invest in a manufacturing facility in Canada. That was our dream. Today this facility has become a very important operation for Honda.”
"On behalf of Canada's new government, I am proud to congratulate and thank Honda and its 4,300 Associates for 20 years of tremendous quality and commitment to Canada," said the Honorable Maxime Bernier, Minister of Industry. "There are so many accomplishments to celebrate: the 20th anniversary, four million vehicles produced, production of the new redesigned Acura MDX, and the new engine plant coming on-line in 2008. They are all a testament to the commitment to excellence by everyone at the Alliston plant. Honda's ongoing investments in Canada and in Alliston are a strong vote of confidence in Canada – and Canadian workers."
"Honda is a real success story here in Ontario," said Joseph Cordiano, minister of Economic Development and Trade. "Its continuing investments in Alliston and in our province have created thousands of jobs, and help keep Ontario not only competitive, but a leader in auto manufacturing in North America."
Celebrating with the 4,300 HCM associates and invited government officials, parts suppliers and dealers, the company’s global CEO also congratulated the Honda associates on 20 years of quality manufacturing in Canada and the recent production of HCM’s four-millionth vehicle (a 2006 Civic sedan).
The ceremony also highlighted the 4-millionth vehicle produced at Honda of Canada Mfg. A red 2006 Honda Civic sedan rolled off the assembly line on August 4 to mark the milestone. The Honda Civic has been Canada’s best-selling passenger car the past nine consecutive years, and remained the country’s top-selling car through the first half of 2006.
The four-millionth production achievement follows an announcement in May that the Alliston complex would further expand with the addition of an engine assembly plant. This new facility will be able to produce 200,000 vehicle engines a year starting in 2008 and increases Honda’s commitment to Canada by an additional $154-million (Cdn) and 340 associates. The new engine plant will be located on a site that neighbours Honda Canada’s two existing manufacturing facilities. At full capacity, the new engine plant will produce approximately 200,000 four-cylinder engines a year, supporting Honda vehicles built in Canada.
“Our future focuses on new products, including the 2007 Acura MDX, that set new benchmarks in quality, design and engineering,” said Mr. Fukui. “Our future products and business decisions as demonstrated through our commitment to build a new engine plant here in Alliston allow us to create new value for our customers and for the local community in Canada.
“Today is a new day that holds new promise,” Mr. Fukui added. “Together, let’s make new dreams become a reality and in this way ensure that Honda is a company that Canadians want to exist.”
The Honda of Canada Mfg. plant began production in 1986 with the assembly of the Honda Accord. In 1988, the plant switched to producing the Honda Civic – a model that the Alliston plant continues to produce. In 1998, a second line was opened to allow for production of the Honda Odyssey minivan. Honda’s total capital investment to date in Canada is $2.15-billion (Cdn).