The plan of Honda’s new CEO revealed a step into production of electric cars bundled with other upcoming new revelations.
This approach was the product of discussions from sluggish sales and unusual quality related concerns, thus the ultimate plan to repackage the company according to CEO Takahiro Hachigo of Honda from his speech last February 24, Wednesday from a speech in Tokyo.
Takanobu Ito, who was Hachigo’s predecessor initiated the “six-region” structure. This aimed to spread Hondas system into six regional offices around the world that would cater to “global” models with region-specific products sold around the world.
The outcome was more costly for the automaker. Honda ended up with production capacity that was redundant in some regions.
Hachigo’s term as CEO will start in organizing the structure of production by merging global models from one region to another. This would entail exports from the West to East and vice versa. Included in this clean up is a sequence of organizational and structural revamp to make sense regional product development.
The expected outcome should be an improvement in time to market and plausibly to help Honda amend quality related issues in the past.
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In the past, Honda is known for having products that are “fun to drive” with sporty looks. In contrast to the rival Toyota that is known to have very well built products, however unexciting. Nowadays, the “fun to drive” perception of Honda has tarnished and Toyota embraced the aggressive style while focusing on performance and handling.
Now, with Hachigo’s platform in place, the “Honda DNA” will soon be etched in their upcoming products. These changes are aimed toward Honda’s global product-development organization to invite new and thrilling products.
Working with General Motors, Hachigo laid out the plan to drive Honda to a more vigorous plan to develop cost effective hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles. Release of new products are estimated on 2020.
The above information is old news. What Honda will be doing this time is to exert maximum efforts with “plug-in hybrids.” The said all-new plug-in hybrid model will be sold in North America by 2018. Thereafter, other plug-in variants will come out in other major global model lines. The long term plan is for the over all global sales of hybrids to achieve two-thirds of their market including both fuel-cell vehicles and battery electrics by the year 2020.
Last year, Hachigo have already announced inevitable huge changes when he took the job as CEO. His plan is slowly being realized, however, this will definitely take some time before we see the outcome in the marketplace.
For a long while now, this is the kind of change that Honda needed that could turn the company around to how it used to be, strength in the market at the same time adapting to the evolving global marketplace. Much of these changes will take effect come April 1 this year.