Honda on Thursday announced plans to push its EV supply chain into Canada, in a move that it said recognizes “the long-term attractiveness of the Canadian EV manufacturing ecosystem.”

The investment is significant—$11 billion U.S. dollars, including investments by joint-venture partners—but it doesn’t yet actually commit to an EV assembly plant. Honda says that it “has begun evaluating the requirements to build an innovative and environmentally responsible Honda EV plant and stand-alone Honda EV battery plant in Alliston, Ontario.”

Honda has set an expected start date of 2028 for the plant, which it says would make up to 240,000 EVs per year, with the EV battery plant making up to 36 gigawatt-hours per year. Honda would maintain the current employee level of 4,200 jobs at the plant but add 1,000 new jobs for EV and EV battery-related facilities. 

Honda Saloon Concept - 2024 CES

Honda Saloon Concept – 2024 CES

What’s proposed would also include a battery materials processing plant with South Korea’s POSCO, plus a joint-venture battery separator plant with Japanese chemical giant Asahi Kasei, and Honda says it would lead to “significant spinoff jobs” around the sites.

It’s unclear whether next-generation batteries will play a big role at this new plant. Honda is developing its own solid-state EV batteries and sees them as a key to enabling more affordable small EVs by 2030

The automaker notes that it’s seeking incentives from Canada and the province of Ontario for the facilities. 

In the meantime, in its first move toward U.S. EV mass production, Honda is establishing an EV Hub in Ohio that will spend $700 million to retool three of its plants there and build a new $3.5 billion joint-venture battery plant with LG Energy Solution. Those facilities will have flexibility to mix gasoline models and EVs on the same production line, and Honda recently said that the first facility, at Marysville, Ohio, will have the capability to make hundreds of EVs per day

Honda 0 Saloon concept

Honda 0 Saloon concept

In Ohio, it will assemble EVs built on Honda’s next-generation EV platform—incorporating a new die-cast process with mega-casting machines larger than what Tesla is using in Texas. Across all of the Ohio EV Hub plants, based on battery capacity, Honda would be able to make 300,000 to 500,000 EVs annually. 

Under a separate arrangement, Honda will also be assembling EVs for Sony-Honda Mobility, with those vehicles bearing the Afeela name and showcasing a new vision for in-car entertainment drawing from Sony’s strengths. 

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