Honda plans $64 bn investment to boost EV business

American Honda Motor

Honda Motor is planning to spend $64 billion on research and development (R&D) over the next decade to boost its electric vehicle (EV) business.

Japan-based Honda revealed that it would roll out 30 electric vehicle (EV) models by 2030. It aims to make some 2 million electric vehicles a year by 2030.

Tesla is the leader in EV business and Japanese automakers risk falling behind traditional European and U.S. rivals.

Honda and other Japanese automakers have long said that even as they go electric, they won’t give up on older, hybrid technology.

“By no means is this the end of hybrids and the replacement of all hybrids with EVs,” Honda Chief Executive Toshihiro Mibe said. “We will develop our current hybrids and use them as a weapon in our business.”

The bulk of the 8 trillion yen ($64 billion) investment would be in electrification and software technologies. That includes some 43 billion yen of spending on a demonstration line for the production of solid-state batteries, with the aim of starting that in spring 2024.

1) Now and for the time being:
Honda will ensure stable procurement of liquid lithium-ion batteries in each region by strengthening the external partnership.

North America: Honda will procure Ultium batteries from GM. Separately, aside from GM, Honda is exploring the possibility of creating a joint venture company for battery production.

China: Honda will further strengthen our collaboration with CATL.

Japan: Honda will procure batteries for mini-EVs from Envision AESC.

2) From the second half of the 2020s:

Honda will accelerate its independent research and development of next-generation batteries. For the all-solid-state batteries it currently has under development, Honda decided to build a demonstration line, investing approximately 43 billion yen, with a goal to make it operational in Spring 2024. Honda aims to adopt its next-generation batteries to models to be introduced to the market in the second half of the 2020s.

Introduction of EVs

From now through the second half of the 2020s:
Honda will introduce products tailored to the market characteristics of each region.

North America: In 2024, Honda will introduce two mid- to large-size EV models currently being developed jointly with GM. (Honda brand: All-new Prologue SUV, Acura brand: an EV SUV model.)

China: Honda will introduce a total of 10 new EV models by 2027.

Japan: In early 2024, Honda will first introduce a commercial-use mini-EV model at the 1-million-yen price range. Then, Honda is planning to make the timely introduction of personal-use mini-EVs and EV SUVs.

After the second half of the 2020s:
Assuming it will become the time of the popularization of EVs, Honda will begin introducing the best EVs from a global perspective.

In 2026, Honda will begin adopting Honda e: Architecture, an EV platform that combines the hardware platform and software platform.

Through the alliance with GM, Honda is planning to introduce affordable EVs in 2027, with a cost and range that will be as competitive as gasoline-powered vehicles, starting from North America.

EV production

As for EV production operations, in China, Honda is planning to build a dedicated EV plant in Guangzhou as well as Wuhan.

Honda is planning for a dedicated EV production line also in North America.