Japanese car-maker Honda will invest more than £200m into its UK factory, aiming to turn it into a global production hub for its next generation Civic model.
The investment into advanced production technologies and processes at the Swindon-based plant will help secure jobs as the facility becomes a specialist in manufacturing the upcoming five-door Civic model, Honda said.
Production of the next generation CR-V will be handed over to Honda’s plant in Ontario, Canada, from where it will be imported to Europe.
“By establishing Honda UK Manufacturing (HUM) as a global production facility for the Civic five-door, Honda is demonstrating its long-term commitment to manufacturing in the UK and Europe,” said HUM’s director Jason Smith.
“This is incredibly important for HUM and is a reward for the commitment and effort put in by Honda Associates in recent years.”
Including this new investment, Honda has put more than £2.2bn into HUM since 1985, regarding the Swindon plant as its flagship facility in Europe.
“This announcement sends a clear message to our associates and suppliers of the strategic importance that Honda Motor Company places on producing cars at our plant in Swindon, UK,” said Toshiaki Mikoshiba, COO and president of Honda Motor Europe. “We will continue to provide high-quality products to meet the expectations of our European customers, and having just unveiled four new models for the European market, we look forward with renewed optimism and purpose for Honda in Europe.”
The new five-door Civic model will be produced for the European market as well as being exported to key global markets. Further, by developing the European facility into a global manufacturing hub for this model, HUM will increase Civic volumes whilst developing improved economies of scale, Honda said.
Honda’s announcement is the latest in a series of recent boosts to car manufacturing in the UK, with Jaguar Land Rover and Coventry-based London Taxi Company announcing investment plans in the last few days.
"It has been a fantastic week for UK automotive, with more than £1bn earmarked by vehicle manufacturers for new-model production that will drive further growth for the sector," said Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders chief executive Mike Hawes.