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Wed Oct 13, 2021, 11:12 PM

Honda goes full throttle on EVs in China with production revamp

TOKYO -- Honda Motor plans to build production lines dedicated to electric vehicles and debut its first EV brand in China as the Japanese automaker doubles down on the industry's electrification trend in the world's biggest auto market.

Honda's two joint ventures with local partners Dongfeng Motor and GAC Group will each set up the new production lines, the company said Wednesday. They would be Honda's first such specialized facilities.

GAC Honda will invest roughly 3 billion yuan ($465 million) to transform facilities at a factory in Guangzhou, ramping up annual capacity by 120,000 units, information submitted to local authorities shows. A similar update is also expected at a Dongfeng Honda plant and the aim is to get the new lines up and running in 2024.

Honda had previously sold electric vehicles under brands supplied by partners. Now it is launching its own e:N Series brand, starting with a sport utility vehicle next spring while a coupe is under development. The plan calls for rolling out 10 models -- the first EVs featuring the familiar "H" emblem -- over the next five years.

While driving ranges and prices of the planned EVs were not disclosed, electric vehicles under joint venture brands sell for 150,000 yuan to 180,000 yuan with a range of about 480 km. The e:N vehicles are expected to carry higher price tags.


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