Honda Motor Company, LTD is a Japanese automaker that was founded in 1948. The company is based in Minato, Tokyo, but it has operations throughout the world. It is one of the largest automakers in Japan and in the top 10 automakers worldwide. In addition to designing and producing cars, trucks, SUVs, and other automobiles, Honda is also well known for their motorcycles and garden equipment. The company has also involved itself in both artificial intelligence and robotics research in addition to recent expansions into the aerospace field.
History of the Honda Motor Company
Although it was founded in 1948, the history of the Honda Motor Company can be traced back to 1937. At that time, Soichiro Honda, who had previously worked as a mechanic, founded the Tokai Seiki Precision Machine Company. This was Honda’s first company, and it was engaged in the business of parts manufacturing. It even won a contract to produce piston rings for Toyota, although that contract was soon lost.
During World War II, Tokei Seiki was brought under the control of the Japanese Government. Toyota also obtained a large stake in the company at around this time, after which Honda was demoted from the position of President of his own company. The company also suffered severe damages during the war, including an Allied bombing that destroyed its Yamashita factory and a quake that leveled another.
After the war, Soichiro Honda sold what remained of his company to Toyota and founded the Honda Technical Research institute. This was in 1946, and Honda would spend the next few years fashioning motorized bicycles out of surplus wartime equipment (including radio generator engines) out of a small shack.
By 1949, Honda was producing complete motorcycles, and the first Honda automobile arrived in 1963 in the form of the T360 pickup truck. These first vehicles fit into the inexpensive kei car category, and Honda’s first passenger cars even used chain-driven rear wheels.
In addition to the main Honda line, the company also produces vehicles with the Acura badge for the luxury market. This brand was first introduced to the United States in 1986, and it proved to be one of the best selling luxury vehicles in the country for a number of years. This was also the first Japanese-based luxury vehicle brand, which was later followed by Lexus, Infinity, and others.
In 1995, Honda established the Honda Aircraft Company, which partnered with GE in 2004 to create GE Honda Aero Engines. The first Honda jet engine, the Honda HA-420 HondaJet, entered production in 2012.
Vital Honda Motor Company Data
Founded: Hamamatsu, Japan (1948)
Current headquarters: Minata, Tokyo
Subsidiaries: American Honda Motor Company
Joint Ventures: Honda Automobile Company (China), GE Honda Aero Engines, Dongfeng Honda, Honda Seil Cars India
Honda Motor Company Contact Information
American Honda Motor Co., Inc.
Honda Automobile Customer Service
1919 Torrance Boulevard
Mail Stop: 500 – 2N – 7A
Torrance, CA 90501-2746