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    William Maley

    2018 Honda Accord Enters Its 10th Generation With Only 4-Cylinders

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      The coupe has flown the coop as well


    The enthusiasm for midsize sedans may be dwindling due to crossovers, but they are still an important segment for many automakers. The Honda Accord is a prime example as it makes up a key part of the Japanese automaker's sales. Last year, Honda moved 345,225 Accords - making 23.4 percent of Honda's 2016 sales. Today in Detroit, Honda introduced the 10th Generation Accord.

    Design has never been one of the Accord's strongest suits. It always sat in the middle of the design spectrum of midsize sedans which many buyers were ok with. This new one sees Honda taking some risks. Up front, there is larger grille and big bar integrating the headlights. The side profile reveals Honda shortening the front and rear overhangs, adding some sculpting for the doors, and lowering the roofline. The new Accord rides on a wheelbase that 2.16 inches longer, while the ride height has been dropped 0.39 inches. One item that will disappoint a small group of people is the Accord coupe being dropped in this generation.

    The interior has become a bit more upscale with higher quality materials and a more efficient center stack. There is a fair amount of tech with a seven-inch TFT display in the instrument cluster and an 8-inch touchscreen for the infotainment system (WITH ACTUAL VOLUME AND TUNE KNOBS!). The system comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. Options include a heads-up display, 4G LTE in-car Wi-Fi, and wireless device charging.

    Honda is the latest automaker to join the turbocharged four-cylinder bandwagon with a choice of two for the 2018 Accord. The base is a 1.5L four-cylinder with 192 horsepower and 192 pound-feet of torque. Optional is a 2.0L four-cylinder derived from the Civic Type R. It offers up 252 horsepower and 273 pound-feet. The 1.5 will come with a CVT, while the 2.0 features a 10-speed automatic. Both will have the option of a six-speed manual. 

    A hybrid version featuring a 2.0L Atkinson cycle four-cylinder and a two-motor hybrid system will also be available, though details on this powertrain will be revealed closer to the Accord's launch.

    Honda says depending on the trim, the 2018 Accord is about 110 to 176 pounds lighter than the outgoing model. This is due to increased amount of high-strength steel and aluminum for the body.

    Pricing for the 2018 Accord hasn't been announced, but you'll be able to pick up one at your nearest Honda dealer this fall.

    Source: Honda
    Press Release is on Page 2


    Dramatic Design of Reimagined 2018 Honda Accord Signals New Direction for America’s Retail Best-Selling Midsize Sedan

    Jul 14, 2017 - DETROIT, MI

    • Next-generation Honda design, packaging and proportion
    • Interior space and quality that exceeds the midsize class
    • New powertrain lineup: turbocharged and electrified performance
    • Lighter, more rigid body and new chassis design
    • Honda Sensing® technology standard on all models and trims
    • New Accord Hybrid to be made in Ohio

    Honda today showcased a new direction for America's retail best-selling midsize sedan1 with the world debut of a more stylish, sporty and premium 2018 Honda Accord that launches this fall. The world debut event held today in Detroit can be viewed at http://www.youtube.com/honda.

    The 10th-generation Accord is new from the ground up and features a lighter and more rigid body structure, an advanced new chassis design, two all-new, high-torque direct-injected and turbocharged engines, the world's first 10-speed automatic transmission for a front-drive car and a new generation of Honda's two-motor hybrid technology, along with a host of new safety, driver-assistive and connected-car technologies – all wrapped in a more sophisticated, sleek and athletic design with top class interior space and comfort.

    "We are redefining the Honda Accord for a new generation of buyers by bringing something unexpected that challenges the idea of what a mainstream sedan can be," said Jeff Conrad, senior vice president of the Automobile Division of American Honda Motor Co., Inc. "Even as we advance core values like great driving dynamics, safety performance and efficiency, the distinctive design of this all-new 2018 Honda Accord will help it appeal to both head and heart in equal measure."

    Next-Generation Accord Design and Packaging
    In reimagining the Accord for its 10th-generation rebirth, Honda designers and engineers went back to the fundamentals of proportion and stance with a sporting and athletic appearance, like a sprinter in the blocks. The approach reinvigorates classic Honda design principles, such as a low and wide body, expansive visibility and sporty seating position, and then translating them into a thoroughly modern, sporty and premium Accord sedan design. 

    The new Accord features a longer wheelbase (+2.16 inches), a lower overall height (-0.59 inch) and wider (+0.39 inch) body, wider wheel tracks (+0.20 in. front, +0.79 in. rear), a shortened overall length (-0.39 inch) and lower, sportier seating position (-1.0 inch front and -0.79 inch back). A sweeping greenhouse positioned farther back on the body completes the new stance and proportion of the next-generation Accord. The combined effect of these changes is a more premium look, highlighted by shorter overhangs, a bold front fascia, a long and low hood, and a visual center of gravity moved closer to the rear wheels.

    Viewed head-on, the new Accord's greenhouse also angles in more dramatically from the window sills to the roof, further emphasizing the wide lower body, while inside the cabin the seats have been moved slightly inward that contributes to improved hip, shoulder and head room while enhancing occupants' freedom of movement. Also, the longer wheelbase allowed designers to move the second-row seats substantially rearward, giving Accord almost 2 extra inches of rear leg room to offer one of the most spacious rear seating areas in its class. Overall passenger volume is increased by 2.5 cubic feet to 105.7 (based on LX). Trunk space has also been increased by nearly one cubic foot on the 1.5-liter and 2.0-liter engine powered Accords and by 3.2 cubic feet on the Accord Hybrid to a top level 16.7 cubic feet (+0.9 cu.ft.).

    Elegant and modern exterior detailing compliments the Accord's new, more dynamic design. The bold and upright front fascia is highlighted by Honda's signature chrome wing front grille positioned above a large main air intake and flanked by available 9-lamp full-LED headlights and LED fog lights. The chiseled hood features a distinctive and aggressive raised center, and the deeply sculpted body sides enhance the visual length and strength of the lower body.

    Further, a new laser brazing process that joins the dramatically arching roof to the body side panels creates a clean appearance with no garnish over the rain channels. The similarly low and wide rear view is finished off with an upswept decklid, distinctive LED light-pipe taillights and cleanly integrated dual exhaust ports. Overall aerodynamic efficiency is improved by approximately 3 percent (based on EX trim) to make it the most streamlined Accord yet.

    Elegant and Tech Savvy Cabin 
    The 2018 Accord also boasts a larger, more premium and tech savvy interior that compliments its athletic and elegant body design, delivering a level of quality and premium feel that belies Accord's mainstream sedan status.

    The new Accord features a panoramic forward view that is enabled by its lower cowl and by front roof pillars that are 20 percent narrower and moved rearward relative to the driver's seating position. The new soft-touch instrument panel features an ultra-thin profile and three-tier design with a strong upper deck that describes a continuous arc from its outboard section through the side door sills, giving a sense of strength and visual continuity.

    A more intricately contoured sport inspired steering wheel with deep-set thumb rests and available paddle shifters compliment the Accord's more sophisticated and sporty performance capabilities. Meticulous attention to the tactile and visual quality of surface materials and decorations communicates modernity and soft-spoken elegance throughout the cabin.

    The inboard positioning of the seats provides for improved freedom of movement and is complimented by longer, wider and more deeply padded arm rests, front and rear; while the Accord's newly designed seats feature taller shoulder bolstering for a more premium appearance and improved lateral support. New high-accuracy seat padding with variable firmness improves seating comfort and support. The driver's seat now has available 12-way power adjustment with height-adjustable lumbar support, and passenger comfort is further enhanced by available new heated and ventilated front seats and by improved available rear seat heating with both seat bottom and seat back heating elements. 

    The tech-savvy and easy-to-use 2018 Accord cabin also features an all-new HMI that includes an ultra-slim 7-inch TFT driver's meter and a new 8-inch Display Audio touchscreen interface with physical volume and tuning knobs and more intuitive, smartphone-like features and functionality including customizable app tiles and home-screen shortcuts, along with Apple CarPlay™ and Android Auto™ compatibility. The Accord also will offer the next-generation of HondaLink telematics with new capabilities including emergency roadside assistance, remote locking/unlocking and engine start, stolen vehicle tracking, remote diagnostics, geofencing, speed tracking and more.

    Touring trims of both 1.5-liter and 2.0-liter models also feature a new 6-inch driver's Head Up Display with selectable information, including speed, engine rpm, turn-by-turn navigation, and Traffic Sign Recognition. Additional new or improved connected-car technologies available on the 2018 Accord include wireless device charging, automatic Bluetooth® phone pairing with Near Field Communication technology, 4G LTE in-car Wi-Fi, and Wi-Fi-enabled over-the-air system updates.

    Audio systems vary by trim, starting with 4 speakers and 160 watts on LX, 8 speakers and 180 watts on Sport and EX trims, and 10 speakers and 450 watts on EX-L and Touring trims. All models feature USB charging ports (two 2.5-amp ports on EX and above) along with Bluetooth connectivity.

    Accord Performance: Turbocharged and Electrified 
    The 2018 Accord takes an entirely new approach to performance by featuring three advanced new powerplants – two direct-injected and turbocharged 4-cylinder engines and the third generation of Honda's two-motor hybrid powertrain technology. The 2018 Accord also features a new Honda-developed 10-speed automatic transmission (10AT) with the 2.0-liter turbo engine, the first of its kind for a front-wheel-drive car, and an available 6-speed manual transmission for both turbocharged engines.

    The new 1.5-liter, 16-valve DOHC direct-injected turbo with dual Variable Timing Control (dual VTC) produces a peak 192 horsepower (HP) at 5,500 rpm and 192 lb-ft. of torque from 1,500 to 5,000 rpm, up from 185 HP at 6,400 rpm and 181 lb.-ft. at 3,900 rpm on the existing, normally aspirated 2.4-liter model. The new 1.5-liter turbo is mated to a Honda continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) or, in Sport trim, to a CVT or a 6-speed manual transmission (6MT).  

    The Accord can also be equipped with a new 2.0-liter 16-valve DOHC direct-injected turbo with i-VTEC® valvetrain paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission or, in Sport trim, to the 10AT or an available 6MT. The new 2.0-liter turbo, sharing much of its design with the race-bred 2017 Civic Type R, produces 252 HP at 6,500 rpm and 273 lb.-ft. of torque from 1,500 to 4,000 rpm, compared to 278 HP at 6,200 rpm and 252 lb.-ft. at 4,900 rpm for the 3.5-liter V6 that it replaces. 

    Both turbocharged engines utilize a host of new technologies, including high-efficiency low-inertia turbos, variable valve timing, low-pressure-loss air intake and high-accuracy direct injection, to deliver immediate and powerful response along while still anticipated to receive top level fuel economy ratings.  The two new automatic transmissions – the CVT for the 1.5-liter engine and new 10AT for the 2.0-liter engine – take greater advantage of available torque while maximizing quietness and efficiency during highway cruising. The redesigned CVT has an 11 percent lower ratio compared to the current version for more powerful launch performance, while the new 10AT is 22 lbs. lighter, has a 68 percent wider overall ratio range with a 43 percent lower first gear, and a 17 percent taller top gear compared to the current Accord's six-speed automatic.

    Production of New Accord Hybrid Returns to Ohio
    An all-new, even more refined and fuel efficient Accord Hybrid will be again built in Marysville, Ohio after a couple of years of production in Japan, and will be powered by the third-generation of Honda's innovative two-motor hybrid technology, offering improved power delivery with no compromise to interior or cargo space and packaging.

    The new hybrid powertrain will utilize a 2.0-liter Atkinson cycle engine with greater than 40 percent thermal efficiency, the highest for any mass-produced Honda engine, paired with Honda-developed electric motors that are the first drive motors in the world to use magnets containing no heavy rare-earth metals. As before, the Accord two-motor system operates without the need for a conventional automatic transmission.

    Additionally, a new, more compact intelligent power unit (IPU), containing the hybrid battery pack and its control systems, is now mounted under the rear floor instead of in the trunk, preserving both cargo space (16.7 cu.-ft.) and the flexibility of a 60/40-split and folding rear seat, standard on all models and trims. Detailed specifications on the 2018 Accord Hybrid, including power and fuel-economy ratings, will be release closer to launch.

    New Approach to Body and Chassis Design
    The 2018 Accord's new body structure is lighter and more rigid, utilizing 29 percent ultra-high-strength steel, the most extensive application of this weight-saving material in any current mass-produced Honda car. Overall, the new Accord employs 54.2 percent high strength steel (above 440 MPa).

    Key body features include the latest generation of Honda's Advanced Compatibility Engineering™ (ACE™) body structure with crash stroke front frame, tailor-tempered rear frame members for improved crash-energy absorption, and the extensive use of structural adhesives for increased rigidity, cabin quietness and weight reduction. Total vehicle weight is down between approximately 110 to 176 pounds, depending on trim, while body torsional and bending rigidity are improved 32 and 24 percent, respectively, aiding ride quality, cabin quietness, and dynamic performance. 

    Mated to the new body is a more sophisticated new chassis design. The 2018 Accord's lighter chassis features a new Macpherson strut front suspension with L-shaped aluminum control arms mounted to an all-aluminum front subframe. The new setup better isolates and manages varying road inputs, improving handling precision, ride quality and cabin quietness along with outstanding high-speed stability and control. The new, more space-efficient rear suspension is a multi-link design mounted to a more rigid, floating rear subframe. Fluid-filled compliance bushings at all four corners further improve ride comfort and absorption of road irregularities, and all new Accords also feature, for the first time, an Adaptive Damper System with the ability to adjust shock absorber damping force every 1/500 of a second, providing for a more compliant and controlled ride in all driving situations.

    The new Accord has a 10 mm lower center of gravity. The adoption of lighter-weight turbocharged engines and other body design changes reduce the vehicle's moment of inertia, resulting in crisper turn-in and steering response. All models now have near optimal FWD weight distribution of approximately 60/40 (front/rear). Accords with the new 2.0-liter i-VTEC turbo and 10AT check in at approximately 61/39, a significant improvement versus the current V-6 and 6AT Accord.

    All new Accords will now come equipped with a Two-Mode Driving System featuring Normal and Sport settings, allowing the driver to dial-up/down the vehicle's sporty reflexes depending on the driving environment. The system engages with multiple chassis and drivetrain components, including the new dual-pinion variable-ratio electric power steering (EPS), automatic transmission, drive-by-wire throttle, adaptive dampers and Active Sound Control system, to provide the driver with an expanded range of driving characteristics. An ECON mode is also available that helps improve fuel efficiency by modifying throttle mapping and HVAC operation.

    Along with the first application of structural adhesives to Accord, cabin quietness is further enhanced by a comprehensive sound-insulating package that includes full underbody covers, which also aid aerodynamics, front and rear fender and engine compartment insulators, alloy wheels with Honda-proprietary resonator technology, sound-absorbing carpet, acoustic laminated windshield glass – plus front door acoustic glass on EX and above – and a new, three-microphone Active Noise Control system.

    Advanced Safety and Driver-Assistive Technology
    For 2018, all Accords will feature the full suite of Honda Sensing® safety and driver-assistive technologies as standard equipment. Honda Sensing includes Collision Mitigation Braking System™ (CMBS™), Lane Departure Warning, Road Departure Mitigation, Adaptive Cruise Control with Low-Speed Follow and new Traffic Sign Recognition. Additional available driver-assistive technologies include Blind Spot Information, front and rear parking sensors, Cross Traffic Monitor and Driver Awareness Monitor; and all models feature a Multi-Angle Rearview Camera with dynamic guidelines.

    Standard advanced active and passive safety systems include Vehicle Stability Assist with Traction Control, Anti-lock brakes with Electronic Brake Distribution, Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS), advanced front airbags, driver and front-passenger side airbags and new driver and front-passenger knee airbags. The Accord targets top U.S. government (NCAP) and IIHS collision safety ratings.

    Accord Models and Trims
    More detailed information will be provided closer to launch, but the 1.5-liter powered Accord will be available in six trims – LX, Sport, EX, EX-L, EX-L Navi and Touring. The 2.0-liter model has four trims available, which are Sport, EX-L, EX-L Navi and Touring. And the new Accord Hybrid will be available in five trims – Hybrid, EX, EX-L, EX-L Navi and Touring. Sport trims for both 1.5-liter and 2.0-liter engine variants will now feature available short-throw 6-speed manual transmissions.

    Accord Manufacturing
    All variants of the 2018 Accord will be produced at Honda's Marysville, Ohio auto plant2, at which the company is investing with numerous enhancements to further advance quality and efficiency, including the introduction of additional technologies and processes. Accord was the first vehicle from a Japanese automaker to be made in America and has been in continuous production at the Marysville Auto Plant since November 1982, with cumulative U.S. production exceeding 11 million units over 35 years. 

    The 2018 Accord's 1.5-liter and 2.0-liter turbo engines will be produced at Honda's Anna, Ohio engine plant, and its CVT transmission will be manufactured at the company's Russells Point, Ohio plant. 

    The all-new, Honda-designed 10-speed automatic transmission will be produced at the company's Tallapoosa, Georgia plant2. Honda recently announced a combined $149 million investment in the Russells Point and Tallapoosa plants to facilitate production of the new 10AT. Additional details concerning new manufacturing technology and investments will be announced closer to launch.

    Edited by William Maley

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    While I was hoping they would push outside their conservative view of auto design, I guess I was hoping for too much as the look does not impress me at all and why drop the already ride height any more. That is just crazy. 

    This will loose sales as people do not like pushing up from the ground to get out of a car nor do they like to drop into the groud to drive or ride.

    Sad :( 

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    Interesting..first time Honda has gone with a 6 window greenhouse for the Accord (and likewise for the current Civic, I believe).    The dash style reminds me a lot of current BMWs...

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    I really like this  The 2.0 Turbo/10 speed auto one seems interesting   I would not kick a 2.0T with the 6 speed manual out of bed. 

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    Hate the white interior, and the moron from Acura must have moved over to Honda with that stupid buck tooth grill chrome crap idea.

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    22 minutes ago, Cubical-aka-Moltar said:

    Interesting..first time Honda has gone with a 6 window greenhouse for the Accord (and likewise for the current Civic, I believe).    The dash style reminds me a lot of current BMWs...

    You're right it does look like BMW.. I wonder if there will be another option aside from black and white for trim colour.

    Overall It looks good in a Civic and A7 had a baby kind of way, I like the lower ride height, a nod back to the early 90's Accord, and 6 speed availability.  The wood/plood actually looks decent as opposed to the stuff in the CRV.

     

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    12 minutes ago, frogger said:

    You're right it does look like BMW.. I wonder if there will be another option aside from black and white for trim colour.

    Overall It looks good in a Civic and A7 had a baby kind of way, I like the lower ride height, a nod back to the early 90's Accord, and 6 speed availability.  The wood/plood actually looks decent as opposed to the stuff in the CRV.

     

    The early 90s Accord was one of the better styled Accord generations, IMO...they were crisp and clean, with a low beltline and big windows, great outward visibility.. 

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    46 minutes ago, Frisky Dingo said:

    My Gawd that is just awful. Their designers have lost their effing minds.

    Agreed....

    Had a few days when I started liking the Civic, but then the barbiturates wore off and I pulled myself out of the gutter and back into reality.

    I need to switch to something safer like LSD when I feel like getting stoned...because not even a bad LSD trip could make me want to take a trip in an Accord.

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    Audi plus civic greenhouse styling, mostly works for me except i think the hood looks a bit out of proportion.  Sort of hard to get used to this look on a Honda but it won't hinder sales at all. 

    interior, to be honest, done pretty well and makes some of the competition like my 16 malibu look a little under kitted

    engine and tranny choices are spot on for honda fans.  Wise move on losing the CVT for the 2.0 and a 2.0 plus manual would be amazing.  No one will care about losing the v6 here.

    Honda has absolutely hit market dead on with the Civic and new CRv and now this.  Cuts into GM and Ford and other import brands market share.  In this case i think it may rob from the Altima and ugly new Camry.

    Pretty amazing considering how terrible the last Civic was.

     

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    More 4-door coupe like styling, I think no sedan designer has any originality, they just copy what is out there.  

    I think the engine choices are good.  The 1.5 liter makes similar power to the 3 liter V6 of 15 or so years ago and the 2.0 makes as much torque as the 3.5 V6.

    What is a bit interesting is the 10 speed because there is hardly any fuel economy gain after 8 or 9 gears.  

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    2 hours ago, riviera74 said:

    Other than fuel economy, what is the advantage of a turbo four over a v6?

    lots of times its packaging or weight advantage.

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    Strong Dodge overtones in the front fascia... tho on the Charger it doesn't look like some trim pieces are missing.

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    Exterior:  HATE

    Interior:  Good, but not great.

    Powertrains:  Should be fine... curious about the 10-speed

    White for an interior color--not a great idea.

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    I like the interior design...looks more upscale than a typical appliance....the white and black looks good, but it would require a lot of upkeep to stay clean and look good..at least they are going with some color choices beyond the usual boring gray. 

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    I am sure the interior will be available in other colors and the exterior looks pretty good in grey I think.   I am very interested in the Sport 2.0T with the 6 speed manual. 

    This is also supposed to be roughly 200 pounds lighter than the last Accord too. 

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      Press Release is on Page 2
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      Direction for the electrification of our automobile products
      Striving to realize a carbon-free society, Honda set a goal to electrify two-thirds of our global automobile unit sales by 2030.
      When we talk about the introduction of electrified vehicles, there are two perspectives. One is the improvement of fuel economy, and the other is zero emissions. Regulations for the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards are becoming increasingly stringent in every country around the world and complying with CAFE standards is one of the most important challenges for the automobile industry. At Honda, in light of the required infrastructure and how people use automobiles, we believe that hybrid technology is, at this moment, the most effective way for us to comply with CAFE standards. Therefore, we will electrify our products mainly with hybrid technologies. By increasing sales of our hybrid models all around the world, Honda will contribute to the global environment through the improvement of fuel economy.
      To this end, we will expand the application of our 2-motor hybrid system to the entire lineup of Honda vehicles. In addition to the 2-motor hybrid system which is compatible with mid-to-large-sized vehicles, we developed a new, more compact 2-motor hybrid system suitable for small-sized vehicles. This small-sized 2-motor hybrid system will be adopted first by the all-new Fit which we are planning to exhibit as a world premiere at the Tokyo Motor Show this fall.
      In addition to the expansion of the lineup of products equipped with the 2-motor hybrid system, we also will expand the application of the 2-motor hybrid system on a global basis. With that, by 2022, we are expecting to reduce the cost of the 2-motor hybrid system by 25% compared to the cost of this system in 2018.
      As for zero emission vehicles, with our battery EVs we will comply with the Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) program being adopted by California and other states in the U.S. and China's New Energy Vehicle (NEV) mandate. We will efficiently introduce our battery EVs to the market by selecting the most appropriate partners and resources to satisfy the different needs in each region.
      In North America, we will jointly develop battery components with General Motors and introduce highly-competitive battery EVs in the market.   
      In China, in order to keep up with the fast speed of electrification, we have already begun introducing battery EV models developed together with our local joint venture companies in China. While envisioning the introduction of battery EV models from the Honda brand, we will continue utilizing local resources in China and introduce more battery EV models in a timely manner to fulfill local market needs in China.
      In Europe and Japan, we will introduce the Honda e, a new battery EV model, which was recently introduced as a prototype at the Geneva Motor Show.
      To summarize, Honda will popularize and improve the business feasibility of electrified vehicles by focusing on hybrid vehicles and battery EVs.
      Changes in operational structure
      In order to ensure the solid implementation of these initiatives I just introduced for our automobile business, we renewed our operational structure as of April. The aims of this structural change are to establish an organization which brings all regional operations together to strongly facilitate inter-regional coordination and collaboration and to increase the speed of our business operations by enabling prompt decisions and prompt execution.
      Today, I introduced our initiatives to strengthen our automobile business structure and the direction of our electrification. Under the new organizational structure, we will realize our goals with a keen sense of speed. 
      Closing
      As we stated in our 2030 Vision, Honda is striving to grow through the pursuit of quality so that we can fulfill our vision to "Serve people worldwide with the joy of expanding their life's potential."
      Honda will continue taking on new challenges while being driven by strong passion, so that we can continue to be a company that society wants to exist even in 2050 after Honda becomes more than 100 years old. 
      *1 S-E-D-B: Sales, Engineering (Manufacturing), Development (R&D), Buying (Purchasing)

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      On Wednesday, Honda CEO Takahiro Hachigo announced plans for the future of the company's automobile division. Efficiency was the theme in Hachigo's speech in terms of their lineup. manufacturing, and driving.
      One of the initiatives put forth by Hachigo was to cut down on the number of variations on offer in their global lineup, along with the dropping of various regional nameplates.
      "However, as a result of accommodating regional needs somewhat excessively in each individual region, we recognize that the number of models and variations at the trim and option level have increased and our efficiency has declined. So, we will undertake initiatives to further strengthen our inter-regional coordination and collaboration and advance our art of making automobiles in order to simultaneously increase the attractiveness and efficiency of both global and regional models," he said.
      "With this initiative, by 2025, we will reduce the total number of variations at the trim and option level for our global models to one-third of what we have now.In addition, we will increase efficiency by eliminating and consolidating some similar regional models into even more competent models shared across multiple regions."
      This will allow Honda to simplify model allocation at their various assembly plants around the road. According to Hachigo, this will allow the company to achieve "100 percent capacity utilization worldwide by 2020" and cut production costs by 10 percent by 2025. 
      Part of that initiative involves a new modular architecture that will debut in a global model next year. No details on the vehicle were provided, but Honda says the goal of the architecture "is to commonize about 70 percent of the components" used in a vehicle such as the engine bay and passenger cabin.
      Honda is also planning to have two-thirds of their global lineup electrified by 2030. Furthermore, it wants 100 percent of its European lineup to be electrifed by 2025. To do this, Honda is readying a new electric city car known as the e, along with deploying their two-motor i-MMD hybrid setup to all of their models in Europe. In the U.S. Honda is planning to launch more hybrid models, and increase their electric car lineup with some help from General Motors.
      “In North America, we will jointly develop battery components with General Motors and introduce highly-competitive battery EVs in the market,” said Hachigo.

      Press Release is on Page 2
      Summary of Honda CEO Speech on Automobile Business Direction
      Remarks by Takahiro Hachigo, President & CEO, Honda Motor Co., Ltd. May 8, 2019
      Honda has been working on two top-priority management challenges in the midst of abrupt changes in the global business environment surrounding the automobile industry: to strengthen the structure of our automobile business and to further increase the speed of business transformation for future generations.
      So, today, I would like to introduce some initiatives we are taking for our automobile business, especially how we are strengthening the structure of our automobile business, the direction we are taking with electrification, as well as some progress we have made to date.
      Strengthening automobile business structure 
      Ever since I became the president of the company, I have been conveying the message that we will make Honda strong by creating strong products and also by strengthening our inter-regional coordination and collaboration. We put special emphasis on the strengthening of our global models, which have been the source of Honda's core competence, and also the enhancement of our regional models.
      As a result, we currently have the five global models, namely Civic, Accord, CR-V, Fit/Jazz and Vezel/HR-V, and these five strong models now account for 60% of our global automobile sales. At the same time, our regional models such as the N Series for Japan, Pilot for North America and Crider for China are playing an important role as a source of growth for each respective region.
      However, as a result of accommodating regional needs somewhat excessively in each individual region, we recognize that the number of models and variations at the trim and option level have increased and our efficiency has declined. So, we will undertake initiatives to further strengthen our inter-regional coordination and collaboration and advance our art of making automobiles in order to simultaneously increase the attractiveness and efficiency of both global and regional models.
      Strengthening inter-regional coordination and collaboration
      As for inter-regional coordination and collaboration, under the new operational structure we adopted for our automobile operations starting from April, we began reviewing and sharing the product lineup by grouping some of our six regions outside Japan based on a similarity of key factors, such as market needs and environmental regulations. With this initiative, by 2025, we will reduce the total number of variations at the trim and option level for our global models to one-third of what we have now. In addition, we will increase efficiency by eliminating and consolidating some similar regional models into even more competent models shared across multiple regions.
      Advancement of our art of making automobiles (automobile development) 
      As for the advancement of automobile development, since I became the president, we have been increasing the efficiency and speed of our Monozukuri (the art of making things) by innovating the entire process, from planning and development all the way through production, by enabling the S-E-D-B (sales, manufacturing, R&D, purchasing*1) functions to collaborate beyond the boundaries of their divisions.
      Moreover, we have already introduced the Honda Architecture in our development.
      The Honda Architecture is a company-wide initiative which will increase the efficiency of development and expand parts-sharing for our mass-production models. The first model being developed with this new method will be the global model we are launching next year. And we will continue increasing the number of models to which we apply this new architecture.
      With the strengthening of global and regional models through inter-regional coordination and collaboration and with the introduction of the Honda Architecture, by 2025, we will reduce the number of manhours we use for the development of mass-production models by 30%, and we will repurpose those manhours to accelerate our research and development in advanced areas for the future. In this way, we can continue creating new technologies which will support the future of Honda.
      Strengthening our operational structure in the area of production 
      In addition to the area of development, we are further strengthening our operational structure in the area of production as well, so that we can create strong products with high efficiency.
      We are making steady progress in optimizing our production capacity in all regions. When this is complete, we are expecting to see that our global capacity utilization rate, excluding China, will increase from 90% recorded in 2018, and we will be producing at full capacity by 2022.
      In China, the third plant of Dongfeng Honda became newly operational, and this put us in a position where we can definitely accommodate market demand in China. We believe that this progress we made paved the way for the optimization of our global production capacity.
      From here onward, we think it is important to increase our competitiveness by increasing the efficiency of our production system in North America.
      For our business in North America, while keeping pace with sales expansion, we enhanced our model lineup and established a flexible production system where our plants sometimes produce various models in duplication to accommodate changes in market demand. However, as a result of the pursuit of high flexibility, an increase in the investment amount and a decline in production efficiency started to become an issue. Therefore, in North America as well, we will reduce the number of variations at the trim and option level, and at the same time, we will simplify the production model allocation at each plant. Through this initiative, we will re-establish a highly-efficient production system and realize the growth of North American business through the pursuit of quality.
      By implementing these initiatives to increase production efficiency in each region, we are expecting to reduce global cost in the area of production by 10% by 2025, compared to the cost recorded in 2018.
      Through all these initiatives I have mentioned, we will steadily strengthen the structure of our automobile business and realize the solidification of our existing automobile businesses by 2025, and, at the same time, we will accelerate our preparation for the future.
      Direction for the electrification of our automobile products
      Striving to realize a carbon-free society, Honda set a goal to electrify two-thirds of our global automobile unit sales by 2030.
      When we talk about the introduction of electrified vehicles, there are two perspectives. One is the improvement of fuel economy, and the other is zero emissions. Regulations for the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards are becoming increasingly stringent in every country around the world and complying with CAFE standards is one of the most important challenges for the automobile industry. At Honda, in light of the required infrastructure and how people use automobiles, we believe that hybrid technology is, at this moment, the most effective way for us to comply with CAFE standards. Therefore, we will electrify our products mainly with hybrid technologies. By increasing sales of our hybrid models all around the world, Honda will contribute to the global environment through the improvement of fuel economy.
      To this end, we will expand the application of our 2-motor hybrid system to the entire lineup of Honda vehicles. In addition to the 2-motor hybrid system which is compatible with mid-to-large-sized vehicles, we developed a new, more compact 2-motor hybrid system suitable for small-sized vehicles. This small-sized 2-motor hybrid system will be adopted first by the all-new Fit which we are planning to exhibit as a world premiere at the Tokyo Motor Show this fall.
      In addition to the expansion of the lineup of products equipped with the 2-motor hybrid system, we also will expand the application of the 2-motor hybrid system on a global basis. With that, by 2022, we are expecting to reduce the cost of the 2-motor hybrid system by 25% compared to the cost of this system in 2018.
      As for zero emission vehicles, with our battery EVs we will comply with the Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) program being adopted by California and other states in the U.S. and China's New Energy Vehicle (NEV) mandate. We will efficiently introduce our battery EVs to the market by selecting the most appropriate partners and resources to satisfy the different needs in each region.
      In North America, we will jointly develop battery components with General Motors and introduce highly-competitive battery EVs in the market.   
      In China, in order to keep up with the fast speed of electrification, we have already begun introducing battery EV models developed together with our local joint venture companies in China. While envisioning the introduction of battery EV models from the Honda brand, we will continue utilizing local resources in China and introduce more battery EV models in a timely manner to fulfill local market needs in China.
      In Europe and Japan, we will introduce the Honda e, a new battery EV model, which was recently introduced as a prototype at the Geneva Motor Show.
      To summarize, Honda will popularize and improve the business feasibility of electrified vehicles by focusing on hybrid vehicles and battery EVs.
      Changes in operational structure
      In order to ensure the solid implementation of these initiatives I just introduced for our automobile business, we renewed our operational structure as of April. The aims of this structural change are to establish an organization which brings all regional operations together to strongly facilitate inter-regional coordination and collaboration and to increase the speed of our business operations by enabling prompt decisions and prompt execution.
      Today, I introduced our initiatives to strengthen our automobile business structure and the direction of our electrification. Under the new organizational structure, we will realize our goals with a keen sense of speed. 
      Closing
      As we stated in our 2030 Vision, Honda is striving to grow through the pursuit of quality so that we can fulfill our vision to "Serve people worldwide with the joy of expanding their life's potential."
      Honda will continue taking on new challenges while being driven by strong passion, so that we can continue to be a company that society wants to exist even in 2050 after Honda becomes more than 100 years old. 
      *1 S-E-D-B: Sales, Engineering (Manufacturing), Development (R&D), Buying (Purchasing)
    • By Drew Dowdell
      Cadillac will be unveiling the Cadillac CT4 along with a V-series version on May 30th according to Motor1.
      Both the CT4 and CT5 ride on a second generation Alpha platform called Alpha 2.  The CT5 is offered in rear-wheel drive with all-wheel drive being an option. It is highly likely that the CT4 will get this same offering. 
      There is word that the V-series version of the Cadillac CT5 will also debut.  It is likely to pack the same 4.2-liter Blackwing V8 that is available in the CT6. The CT4 V-series is likely to get an uprated version of the 3.0TT.
      While the CT5 is more of a fastback style, the spyshots of the CT4 shows a more conventional sedan profile and an Escala style grille similar to the CT5's.
      The CT5 is likely to start in the high mid-$30k range while the CT4 will be aimed more at entry-level luxury buyers. 

      View full article
    • By Drew Dowdell
      Cadillac will be unveiling the Cadillac CT4 along with a V-series version on May 30th according to Motor1.
      Both the CT4 and CT5 ride on a second generation Alpha platform called Alpha 2.  The CT5 is offered in rear-wheel drive with all-wheel drive being an option. It is highly likely that the CT4 will get this same offering. 
      There is word that the V-series version of the Cadillac CT5 will also debut.  It is likely to pack the same 4.2-liter Blackwing V8 that is available in the CT6. The CT4 V-series is likely to get an uprated version of the 3.0TT.
      While the CT5 is more of a fastback style, the spyshots of the CT4 shows a more conventional sedan profile and an Escala style grille similar to the CT5's.
      The CT5 is likely to start in the high mid-$30k range while the CT4 will be aimed more at entry-level luxury buyers. 
    • By Drew Dowdell
      American Honda Announces April Sales Results
       
      May 1, 2019 Civic continues to lead U.S. passenger car sales, driven by strong retail performance Honda truck sales rise 2.7% in April as Passport adds strength and CR-V and Pilot maintain momentum Acura trucks also gain, with RDX surging 17.3% on the way to an overall increase of 6.2% for the month  American Honda Total
      125,775
      +0.1%
      Cars
      57,452
      -3.4%
      Trucks
      68,323
      +3.1%
      Total
      114,088
      +0.2%
      Cars
      54,030
      -2.4%
      Trucks
      60.058
      +2.7%
      Total
      11,687
      -1.7%
      Cars
      3,433
      -16.6%
      Trucks
      8,265
      +6.2%
       

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