Honda Automoveis do Brasil Ltda. (HAB), the Honda automobile production and sales subsidiary in Brazil, has begun construction of a new 1 billion Brazilian Reais (approx. $420m) automobile production plant in the city of Itirapina, located some 200km northwest of Sao Paulo. The investment includes acquisition of a 5.8 million m2 site, purchase of equipment and construction costs.
With an annual production capacity of 120,000 units, the new plant is scheduled to become operational in 2015 and will employ around 2,000 people. The company plans to begin production at the new plant with the Honda Fit, and then increase the model line-up for production of Fit-class compact vehicles.
Combining the production capacity of the new plant with the existing plant in Sumare, the company’s total annual automobile production capacity in Brazil will double from the current 120,000 units to 240,000 units.
Honda also announced plans to establish a new automobile R&D centre within its plant in Sumare, which will start full-scale operations by the end of this year. The strengthened local development capability will enable Honda to deliver an increasing number of products developed to accommodate the needs of local customers in Brazil.
“As the world’s fourth largest market, Brazil is one of the most important markets in the world for Honda. We are building up our local R&D capabilities, and together with this new auto plant, we will continue to deliver products ‘with speed, affordability, and low CO2 emissions’ that exceed the expectations of our customers in Brazil,” stated Takanobu Ito, President & CEO of Honda.