Honda Motor Company: Our History | Honda (2023)

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  • '00 Growing fast
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  • '70 Accord debuts
  • '60 Minibikes, big change
  • '50 Hello, USA
  • '40 Start of something wonderful


Transport yourself to any year since our founding and you’ll find Honda associates with their gazes fixed on the future. We’ve never been afraid to take huge chances on tomorrow, and we’ll never stop daring to dream bigger.

What will transportation look like in 2088? Our associates are currently imagining the answers to this question, working to create tomorrow’s smarter, more mobile world.

Honda is creating new products that improve the lives of people while protecting and preserving our environment. By 2050, the company aims to cut in half CO2 emissions from its products and business operations, including its production plants, in order to address greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global climate change.

Honda views electric vehicle as the key to a sustainable, ultra-low emissions mobility future. The Clarity series of electrified products are at the forefront of Honda’s drive toward the electrification of its products. By 2030, the company aim to have three-quarters of all the cars that it sells globally be electrified vehicles in one form or another – hybrids, plug-in hybrids, battery electric or fuel cell.

We’re currently working toward this crucial goal. It’s all part of our mission to ensure Blue Skies for Our Children, protecting the Earth for future generations.

"We're not thinking just about today or tomorrow, but preparing for the next 50 years of mobility, and we continue to think about how we can advance all stages of human mobility: walking, riding, driving and flying."

—Frank Paluch, President of Honda R&D Americas, Inc.

With the goal of a carbon-free future in mind, we created the Honda SmartChargeTM beta program, the most advanced technology of its kind in the auto industry. Available to Honda Fit EV owners, the program empowers drivers to save money while reducing their environmental footprint when charging––on their time.

The 2018 Honda Accord, the 10th generation of America's most popular car, earned the prestigious 2018 North American Car of the Year award. Accord was the first model from a Japanese automaker to be made in America, beginning in November 1982 in Marysville, Ohio, with cumulative U.S. production of Accord exceeding 11 million vehicles over more than 35 years.

The 2017 Honda Ridgeline, the second generation of Honda's innovative, one-of-a-kind pickup truck with innovations such as the In-Bed Trunk and world's first Truck Bed Audio System was chosen by a panel of expert automotive journalists as the 2017 North America Truck of the Year.

In April 2017, Honda showed for the first time all three vehicles in its Clarity series – the Clarity Fuel Cell Vehicle, Clarity Electric and Clarity Plug-In Hybrid – pointing the way toward a cleaner and greener automotive future. The Clarity is the world’s first vehicle with three different electrified powertrains, offering drivers the advantages of a comprehensively-equipped, five-passenger sedan with advanced design and a range of low-emissions vehicle choices.

The 2016 Honda Civic is selected as the North American Car of the Year by a panel of automotive journalists. This marks the second time a Civic has earned the honor – joining the 2006 Civic.

As part of its vision to create a more sustainable mobility future, Honda introduced the Clarity Fuel Cell to customers in California in late 2016. Representing the leading edge of zero-emissions vehicle technology, the hydrogen-powered Clarity can travel up to 366 miles on a single tank of fuel, can be fully refueled in three to five minutes, and emits only water vapor.

We set up shop in Silicon Valley over 15 years ago, and expanded our facility in the heart of Mountain View, CA. Honda developers partner with entrepreneurial technologists to dream up tomorrow’s transportation experiences advancing connectivity, telematics, safety, autonomous driving and more.

We are honored to name Audrey Stradford the first-ever recipient of The Power of Dreams Award, commending her 40 years of exceptional service as a faculty member and volunteer at Tennessee State University.

“The moment had come to start work on realizing another dream. Trying to win Formula 1 was for many trying to accomplish the impossible. But my decision was made, once and for all. I would have to put in the necessary time, but nothing could stop me from succeeding.”

—Soichiro Honda, Founder

The giant awakens. In partnership with McLaren, we return to our racing roots for the 2015 FIA Formula 1 (F1) World Championship. Dreams of racing glory have always been integral to our company, and we continue to thrive on the raw competition of the track.

The highly anticipated HondaJet achieves type certification from the Federal Aviation Administration and enters into service. First customer deliveries begin just two weeks later.

It’s what car lovers live for. The unveiling of the powerful, strikingly beautiful Acura NSX supercar causes a sensation in the automotive world. Keep your eyes peeled for this stunning vehicle on a road near you.

Honda Transmission Mfg. of America fires up its brand-new wind turbines in Russells Point, Ohio. Honda is the first major automotive manufacturing facility in the U.S. to get a substantial amount of its electricity from onsite wind turbines.

“Everything starts with an idea or a dream or a thought. What goes on from there, where we take it — that’s really what the Power of Dreams represents.”

— Steve Morikawa, VP, Corporate Community Relations

On March 20, the 10-millionth Honda Accord built in North America rolls off the assembly line at our Marysville Auto Plant as Honda celebrates a total U.S. production of 20 million Honda and Acura automobiles.

ASIMO always has a new trick to show off. Demonstrating an ever-growing repertoire, ASIMO meets President Obama and shows off his running, jumping and soccer skills.

How time flies. This year (on June 11, to be exact) American Honda Motor Co., Inc. marks its 50th year of U.S. operations. From our first U.S. store in Los Angeles with six industrious employees, Honda continues to rise to astounding heights, all thanks to the dreams and dedication of our associates.

Honda breaks new ground introducing the 2009 FCX Clarity fuel cell vehicle. With a new, more compact fuel cell stack, Clarity is the world’s first fuel cell sedan capable of comfortably carrying four occupants.

Honda Manufacturing of Indiana begins producing the Civic Sedan. Honda R&D Americas opens its Marine Engine Research Facility in Florida, and Honda Aero begins construction on its North Carolina headquarters.

"Without racing the automobile would not get better. Head-to-head competition in front of a crowd is the way to become number one in the world."

—Soichiro Honda, Founder

Acura enters the American Le Mans Series. In its debut race at the 12 hours of Sebring, Acura wins 1st, 2nd and 4th place in the LMP2 class. These early successes inform future development of their vehicles and continued Le Mans class victories.

Honda R&D Americas opens its third design studio in California for the research and styling of future Acura production models.

The 2006 Honda Civic and 2006 Honda Ridgeline Truck sweep the North American Car and Truck of the Year awards as selected by a panel of automotive journalists in North America.

“Non conformity is essential to an artist or inventor.”

—Soichiro Honda, Founder

ASIMO, which stands for Advanced Step in Innovative Mobility, is one of our forays into advanced humanoid robot design. Conceived to aid those with limited mobility, ASIMO will go on to become one of the most popular Honda public-facing personalities.

“The value of life can be measured by how many times your soul has been deeply stirred.”

—Soichiro Honda, Founder

In December, the Honda Insight drives through uncharted territory to become the first hybrid vehicle available in North America. It remains the most fuel-efficient, non-plugin vehicle in its class for the next 17 years.

Acura takes a game-changing step into the supercar arena with the NSX. The first production car with an all-aluminum monocoque body, the NSX is an instant classic and will remain a sought-after vehicle for connoisseurs.

Honda launches Acura, the first luxury nameplate from a Japanese automaker, with sales of “precision crafted performance.” With its initial 60 U.S. Acura dealers, Acura goes on to earn four consecutive JD Power and Associates Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI) awards.

Honda Power Equipment Mfg., Inc. introduces walk-behind Honda lawnmowers at a new plant in Swepsonville, North Carolina. Today, a Honda mower from North Carolina has been selected as the top-rated self-propelled, gas-powered lawn mower by a “leading consumer publication” for more than decade.

This year marks a big milestone in our commitment to supporting the communities where we work and live. The American Honda Foundation will go on to award over $32 million to organizations in every state in the U.S.

Our first Accord may be a humble hatchback, but it is a big hit. This initial model will be followed by an Accord Sedan in 1979. From its launch until today, Accord is the best-selling passenger car in America, with American car buyers purchasing over 12.5 million.

Driven by the rallying cry of “Blue skies for our children” Honda engineers create a groundbreaking CVCC engine that makes the Honda Civic the first vehicle to meet the strict emissions standards of the new U.S. Clean Air Act without the use of a catalytic converter.

Honda introduces the world’s first fuel-efficient 4-stroke outboard marine engines, which are cleaner, quieter and more economical than comparable 2-stroke engines. And we’re still helping people have fun out on the water.

“What will happen to our streams, lakes and rivers if all that exhaust gas mixed with oil gets pumped into the water? I don’t care if everyone else is making two-strokes, Honda has to make four strokes.”

—Soichiro Honda, Founder

Minibikes can transform lives. The National Youth Project Using Minibikes is an innovative program using minibikes to make positive changes in the lives of disadvantaged youths through fun activities and positive influence.

The Honda N600 is the first automobile we ever sold in America.

The introduction of the 4-cylinder Honda CB750 brings a new level of sophistication to mainstream motorcycles. In naming it “Motorcycle of the Century” in 2012, a leading industry publication called the CB750 the bike that changed everything.

In less than a decade, Honda manages to change the face of motorcycle design and engineering. And we never stop leading the way.

On June 11, American Honda Motor Co., Inc. is established in Los Angeles, California, as the first overseas subsidiary of Honda Motor Co., Ltd.

Honda Motor Co., Ltd. is established with co-founders Soichiro Honda and Takeo Fujisawa and introduces (in 1949) its first original designed and engineered product which Mr. Honda appropriately names the “Dream” D-type motorcycle.

"We have consistently chosen a most difficult path filled with hardships. We must possess the will to challenge difficulties and the wisdom to create new values without being bound by established standards. We do not wish to imitate others."

—Soichiro Honda, Founder

We're reducing CO2 emissions and harmful substances from production to dealerships and everything in between. Including cutting our CO2 emissions by 50% by the year 2050.

Family-owned Rossi Honda in Vineland, NJ made history as America's first energy grid neutral dealership. This milestone marks the first of many to come.

In response to the greatest environmental challenge of our time, Honda Smart Home shows our vision for low-carbon living beyond lower vehicle emissions.

We brought a brand-new Honda FCX to the Spallino family, making them the world’s first customer for a fuel-cell car. In 2016, the FCX will come to market as the Clarity Fuel Cell sedan.

The 2002 Civic Hybrid became our first mass-produced automobile to apply gasoline-electric powertrain technology.

Back to Timeline







What is the history of Honda? ›

Honda Motor Company, Ltd. The engineer Honda Soichiro founded the Honda Technical Research Institute near Hamamatsu in 1946 to develop small, efficient internal-combustion engines. It was incorporated as Honda Motor Company in 1948 and began producing motorcycles in 1949.

Who created Honda Motor Company? ›

Honda Motor Company

Which country company is Honda? ›

Honda is a Japanese publicmultinational conglomerate corporation primarily known as a manufacturer of automobiles, aircraft, motorcycles, and power equipment.

When was Honda made? ›

Why was Honda started? ›

1948: The Honda Motor Co., Ltd. is incorporated

Honda started as a bicycle auxiliary engine manufacturer in a small factory in Hamamatsu.

What is the purpose of Honda company? ›

Honda's primary goals are originality, innovation and efficiency, resulting in high quality products at affordable price, and environment friendly. It has wide network of production and manufacturing facility internationally.

What was the first Honda car? ›

1969 - Honda Sells its first car in America

The Honda N600 is the first automobile sold by Honda Motor Co., Ltd.

How did Honda become popular? ›

In the 1960s, the company achieved worldwide fame for its motorcycles (in particular, its C100 Super Cub, which became the world's best-selling vehicle); in the 1970s, it achieved worldwide fame for its affordable, fuel-efficient cars.

What is special about Honda engines? ›

Superior reliability and quality.

Honda sets the standard for reliable, hard-working engines. Our engines are built with high-quality components designed for optimum performance in the harshest environments. But don't just take our word for it.

What makes Honda unique? ›

Unlike other manufacturers, Honda can seamlessly produce multiple autos on a single assembly line, one after another, and switch a line over to a newly designed vehicle within hours. By contrast, it can take months for Honda's rivals to retool a factory for a new vehicle.

Is Honda made in India? ›

Committed to Make in India, first production facility at Manesar (Haryana) started operations in 2001. A decade later in 2011, Honda expanded to its 2nd plant at Tapukara (Dist. Alwar, Rajasthan) with 1.2 million units' annual production capacity.

Is Honda a good car? ›

Honda has won many awards which attests to its quality. This company has won the Car and Driver Top Manufacturer Awards more time than any other brand has. They've received this award about 80 times, which is two times more than Toyota has with 38. The Honda Accord alone won that award 27 times.

How many Honda companies are there in India? ›

Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India, Private Limited (HMSI) is the wholly owned Indian subsidiary of Honda Motor Company, Limited, Japan. Founded in 1999, it was the fourth Honda automotive venture in India, after Kinetic Honda Motor Ltd (1984-1998), Hero Honda (1984-2011) and Honda Siel Cars India (1995-2012).

What makes a Honda a Honda? ›

To this writer, it's those innovative, powerful and reliable front-drivers which characterise Honda – and the brand's continued commitment to proving their products in motorsport competition which makes them deserving of every enthusiast's respect.

Who is owner of Honda? ›

Mr. Soichiro Honda was born in Hamamatsu, Japan, in 1906. He left elementary school in April 1922 at the age of fifteen and joined apprenticeship in Tokyo.

How many Honda plants are there? ›

Honda began manufacturing in America in 1979 when it opened its first plant in Marysville, Ohio. Today, Honda builds products at 12 manufacturing plants across the country.

When did Honda become popular? ›

Less than a decade later, in 1968, Honda already sold more than 1 million motorcycles and revolutionized the industry as a whole. In 1969, Honda debuted its first four-cylinder motorcycle that would lead the way in sophisticated, road-ready bikes.

What is Honda vision statement? ›

Serve people worldwide with the “joy of expanding their life's potential”

What is the slogan of Honda? ›

Aligning with Honda's global vision and recognizing India as the center of global two-wheeler business for the coming times, HMSI has adopted Honda's global brand slogan 'The Power of Dreams' in India.

What is Honda culture? ›

Initiative, Trust, Equality.

Honda is a company founded on respect for one another. We know people have their own ideas, so we encourage our associates to act on them as well as take responsibility for them. Our culture of mutual trust helps us rely on one another and share knowledge amongst ourselves.

What is Honda called in the USA? ›

The American Honda Motor Company, Inc. (sometimes abbreviated as AHM) is the North American Honda subsidiary of the Honda Motor Company, Ltd.

Why was Honda so successful? ›

It has been driven by diversification with everything from powered equipment through to planes, giving them plenty of cross-pollination technological developments. In particular, Honda is the world's leading engine maker, with annual production of more than 20 million internal combustion motors.

Why Honda is the best car company? ›

Most Trusted Brand: Honda

The brand is known for building reliable, efficient, safe cars that offer a lot of value when new, and hold that value as used models,” KBB explained. Further, Honda doesn't have any major recall controversies surrounding it like Toyota or General Motors do at the moment, either.

Is Honda the best engine? ›

In terms of reliable, hard-working engines, Honda ranks at the top. A high-quality component ensures effective performance in harsh operating conditions when building our engines. Our engines are backed by a 3-year commercial warranty that's the benchmark of the industry.

What are Honda engines? ›

Honda Engines offers a complete line of small, general purpose engines for commercial, rental industry, and consumer applications. Honda engines supply smooth and dependable power for more than 3,000 different product applications, including pressure washers, lawn mowers, rescue, and construction equipment.

How are Honda Cars? ›

Honda has the most refined Petrol Engine (i-VTEC)

The Japanese automaker excels in its petrol engines. The i-VTEC engines are known to be one of the most efficient engines in the country. Powered by this engine, cars like Honda City and Jazz have been ruling their respective segments from a long time.

Did you know facts about Honda? ›

Honda Originally Manufactured Bicycles

After the World Wars, Soichiro Honda and a team of a dozen men created engines that were fitted to bikes. By 1964, they had become the world's largest motorcycle manufacturer. Their famous Gold Wing was introduced in 1974 and has been in production for over 40 years.

How many Honda cars are there? ›

Honda offers 6 car models in India, including 3 cars in Sedan category, 1 car in Hatchback category, 1 car in Compact SUV category, 1 car in Compact Sedan category. Honda has 2 upcoming cars in India, New Jazz and HR-V.

Where are Honda cars made? ›

The Honda brand is a global success with fans across the world, but just where are Hondas made? Honda vehicles are created in state-of-the-art manufacturing plants located in Japan, Mexico, and the United States.

When did Honda start in India? ›

Honda Cars India Ltd. (HCIL), a leading manufacturer of premium cars in India, was established in December 1995 with a commitment to provide Honda's passenger car models and technologies, to the Indian customers.

How much is a Honda? ›

Select Year 2021 Display 5 10 15 per page
Make / ModelMSRPFuel
2021 Honda Civic Hatchback view 6 trims$22,000 - $29,20029/35 mpg
2021 Honda Insight view 3 trims$22,930 - $28,84051/45 mpg
2021 Honda Odyssey view 5 trims$31,790 - $47,82019/28 mpg
2021 Honda Pilot view 14 trims$32,250 - $49,92019/26 mpg
4 more rows

Are Hondas safe? ›

All Hondas have unmatched safety and reliability. The Accord, Insight and Civic have even been named three of the 22 Safest Cars of 2021! The list was compiled by U.S. News & World Report*.

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