The ’18 Honda Accord begins mass production today at Honda’s Marysville, OH, plant.
For the redesigned Accord, the 10th generation of Honda’s popular midsize sedan, the automaker invested $267 million and added 300 jobs at the Marysville plant, the car’s longtime home.
Some $220 million of the funds go toward updating technologies and processes, including a new $165 million welding department with 342 robots. Some $47 million was invested at Honda’s Anna, OH, engine plant, which is assembling the ’18 Accord’s new turbocharged 1.5L and 2.0L engines.
Other new production technologies include laser brazing for the sedan’s roof as well as new stamping techniques that allow for the car’s sculpted body panels.
A subassembly process for the Accord Hybrid’s motor and battery unit is new at Marysville, as the Accord Hybrid again is being built in Ohio after a production stint in Japan.
Rob May, Marysville plant manager, says the new jobs will allow the automaker to meet what it expects to be “strong demand” for the next-gen Accord.
Honda also invested $149 million at its Russells Point, OH, and Tallapoosa, GA, plants for the new Accord’s 10-speed automatic transmission.
The ’18 Accord is set to go on sale in the U.S. this fall.
Despite a bigger sales decline this year than last, Accord sales still are not down as severely as others in the Lower Middle segment where it competes, WardsAuto data shows.
Through August, Accord volume fell 4.5% vs. like-2016, compared with a 17.5% drop in Lower Middle sales this year. In 2016, Accord volume fell 2.9% vs. the segment’s 10.6% decline.
The Accord’s 221,013 deliveries through August place it second in the group behind Toyota’s Camry, which also is all-new for ’18, but has seen sales decline 7.1% so far this year to 247,775.