Debuting its new shape at the 2011 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, the 9th generation Honda Civic prompt presence in the current auto market is paramount. Showing strong sales despite of the future release of a refreshed car, the Honda Civic sales in the United States grew modestly to 260,218 vehicles at the end of December 2010. As the Civic continues to be a forerunning benchmark in the small car market, vehicles like the Chevrolet Cruze, Hyundai Elantra and the 2012 Ford Focus are new entries set to present a formidable challenge for compact honours in the United States. Sporting their refreshed 2012 Civic, the push for Honda to enter the fight in the compact car category took an emotional backseat after March 11th as the effects of the Japanese earthquake and tsunami greatly impacted their corporation. Currently, the operations in Japan are now rendered to 50 percent production capacity as the company is continuing to manage shortages among some part suppliers and the country’s energy resources.
Suffering no considerable effects immediately after the natural disaster in Japan, Honda’s vast North American manufacturing continued for several weeks. However, while 80 perfect of vehicles sold in North America is built on the continent, the interruption of interaction with impeded Japanese operations began to affect assembly of vehicles in the United States and Canada. Held in peril is the production of the 2012 Honda Civic built at facilities in Greensburg, Indiana and Alliston, Ontario. A question would stand if this all-so important compact car would face an interrupted introduction. Fortunately for 2012 Honda Civic watchers (and perhaps unfortunate for the fast-charging competition), the march of the new sedan and coupe will be ongoing.
Since manufacturing plants were already tooled to produce the 2012 Honda Civic by March, there was no delays in setting up the assembly lines due to the Japan disaster. Richard Jacobs, Manager of Public Relations with Honda Canada, has provided confirmation to the company’s production of the new Civic. In relations to the Alliston plants, the 2012 Honda Civics is moving through production at a relatively consistent pace. However, due to the dependence of some pieces to the car, assembly of new Civic vehicles will take place at a reduced pace. “…most of our parts for North American production are sourced in North America, but certain key components that come from Japan are in reduced supply. These include electrical parts (e.g. semiconductors, condensers, diodes), various rubber components, and raw materials for plastic and paint, etc.” Assuring that the parts supply is “still fluid”. Jacobs voices that the reduced production turnout will continue throughout the summer adding, “We cannot provide any further production forecasts beyond that at this time.”
While Alliston and the Greensburg plants is feeding out the common 2012 Honda Civic on time on the North American continent, the more advanced Civic Hybrid will continue to emerge from Japan. Built in their Suzuka plant, the 2012 Honda Civic Hybrid is undergoing a major manufacturing change as it upgrades from a nickel-metal hydride battery pack to a lithium-ion electrical storage unit. Despite the battery changeover and the Japanese manufacturing difficulties, the 2012 Civic Hybrid will remain closely on schedule for North America with sales slated by summer.
Second only to the Honda Accord in overall sales in the United States and the best-selling car in Canada 13 years running, the 2012 Civic’s launch is undoubtedly an important event overall for the auto company. Admitting that current demand can not be met as the Japanese automaker’s plants run at lower capacities, Richard Jacobs indicates that a number of new Honda buyers have already shown the willingness to wait through the extended delay time for their 2012 Civic. Jacob does assure on behalf of Honda that the company will work diligently to increase production in the future. Advertised as a “uniquely suited to unique people”, the patience for the 2012 Honda Civic compact car shows that one unique quality in such a rush, rush world.
Information Source: American Honda Motor Co
Photo Source: American Honda Motor Co, Chris Nagy