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Date added: 18 February 2019

Honda Pulls The Plug On Swindon 

BREAKING: 18 February 2019 3.16pm
 
After nearly 30 years producing millions of engines & cars in Swindon, Honda has made the shock announcement it will close its plant at South Marston in 2022.
 
Last year it manufactured 160,000 Honda Civics and directly employed 3,500.
 
Honda to shut Swindon plant
End of the line:
Honda has produced cars in Swindon since 1992
 
The news comes just 6 months after Honda's senior management appeared to show a vote of confidence in their Swindon factory (see below), and 5 weeks after they announced a 6-day shutdown to allow for a BREXIT evaluation.
 
More to follow.
 
Brief history
 
April 1985 - Honda of the UK Manufacturing (HUM) was established at the former Vickers airfield site at South Marston, Swindon
 
September 1986 - operations began as a car pre-delivery inspection centre
 
July 1989 - engine production at Swindon commenced
 
October 1992 - car production began with the introduction of the European version of the fifth generation Accord
 
BREAKING: 10 Jan 2019 5.42pm

Honda in Swindon is cease production for 6 days in April to adjust to the logistics and border impact of Brexit.

Honda statement:
 
"Honda of the UK Manufacturing Ltd has been assessing how best to prepare for any disruption caused by logistics and border issues following the UK leaving the EU on 29 March 2019.
 
To ensure Honda is well placed to adjust to all possible outcomes, we are planning 6 non-production days in April 2019. This is to facilitate production recovery activity following any delays at borders on parts. These contingency provisions have been put in place to best mitigate the risk of disruption operations at the Swindon factory."
 
The news comes today after Jaguar Land Rover announced 5,000 job losses, with the majority in the UK, as it battles a slump in sales and the potential impact of Brexit.
 
BMW, who produce the Mini car bodies in Swindon, have yet to make any announcement.
 
Honda Commits to Swindon
But warns Brexit no deal will hit production in worrying echo of 2009
 
18 September 2018
 
The Senior Vice President of Honda Europe has spoken out on the possible effects on Swindon as the Brexit deadline gets nearer.
 
Ian Howells said its costs could rise by about 10% if import & export tariffs are applied after 29 March 2019.
 
Honda in Swindon
 
“That would impact our productivity, certainly in terms of the flow of product, but also it does hit potentially our competitiveness. Of course, if we are shipping and competing against a European manufacturer in Europe, they’re not incurring those tariffs,” he said.
 
This follows Jaguar Land Rover's recent warning that “tens of thousands” of jobs could be lost in the sector if the government fails to reach an agreement with Brussels.
 
And in June, BMW, who employ approximately 900 people at their Swindon pressing plant, said it may be forced to close its production sites in the UK if components for Mini are caught up in customs delays after Brexit.
 
Honda in Swindon
 
But despite the ominous tone, Howells was adamant that the Japanese car giant was fully committed to its South Marston plant and their 3,500 associates, where Honda produces the total car - 600 every day - from casting, engine assembly and pressing through to welding, painting and final assembly.
 
“The UK forms part of our global network of manufacturing plants, so the only place we produce the vehicle we produce at Swindon is in Swindon itself.
 
"The logistics of moving a factory the size of Swindon would be huge and as far as we’re concerned, we’re right behind supporting continued production at Swindon,” he added.
  
10 year since 4 month lay-off
 
In January 2009, Honda shut down production for 4 months and laid off thousands of workers in the aftermarth of the financial crisis with significant effect on the local Swindon economy.
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