Sony and Honda look to establish new electric vehicle company

March 11, 2022

Sony first announced plans for an electric vehicle in 2020, showcasing its Vision-S concept at CES in Las Vegas (Courtesy Sony)

Sony Group Corporation and Honda Motor Co., Ltd., have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to establish a joint venture through which the companies plan to engage in the joint development and sales of battery electric vehicles (EVs), commercialising them in conjunction with providing mobility services.

The two companies will reportedly aim to form various definitive binding agreements, including a joint development agreement and a joint venture agreement, with a goal of establishing a new company within 2022, subject to execution of the definitive agreements and relevant regulatory approvals.

The alliance aims to bring together Honda’s mobility development capabilities, vehicle body manufacturing technology and after-sales service management experience with Sony’s expertise in the development and application of imaging, sensing, telecommunication, network, and entertainment technologies, to realise a new generation of mobility and services that are closely aligned with users and the environment.

“Sony’s purpose is to ‘fill the world with emotion through the power of creativity and technology.’ Through this alliance with Honda, which has accumulated extensive global experience and achievements in the automobile industry over many years and continues to make revolutionary advancements in this field, we intend to build on our vision to `make the mobility space an emotional one,’ and contribute to the evolution of mobility centred around safety, entertainment and adaptability,” stated Kenichiro Yoshida, Representative Corporate Executive Officer, chairman, president and CEO, Sony Group Corporation.

The new company is expected to plan, design, develop, and sell the EVs, but not own and operate manufacturing facilities, so it is reported that Honda will be responsible for manufacturing the first EV model at its vehicle manufacturing plant. A mobility service platform is planned to be developed by Sony and made available for the new company. Sales of the first EV model from the new company are expected to begin in 2025.

Toshihiro Mibe, Director, president, Representative Executive Officer and CEO, Honda Motor Co., Ltd., commented, “The new company will aim to stand at the forefront of innovation, evolution, and expansion of mobility around the world, by taking a broad and ambitious approach to creating value that exceeds the expectations and imagination of customers. We will do so by leveraging Honda’s cutting-edge technology and know-how in relation to the environment and safety, while aligning the technological assets of both companies. Although Sony and Honda are companies that share many historical and cultural similarities, our areas of technological expertise are very different. Therefore, I believe this alliance which brings together the strengths of our two companies offers great possibilities for the future of mobility.”

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