American Honda History

In October 1946, Soichiro Honda established the Honda Technical Research Institute in Hamamatsu, Japan, to develop and produce small 2-cycle motorbike engines. Two years later, Honda Motor Company, Ltd. was born, and in 1959 Honda opened its first storefront in Los Angeles with six industrious employees.

From those simple beginnings in Los Angeles, American Honda has grown to become a top manufacturer of motorcycles, power equipment, ATVs, generators, marine engines, and of course, automobiles.


The Honda Civic with groundbreaking CVCC engine is introduced; it's the first vehicle to satisfy the stringent new U.S. Clean Air Act without the use of a catalytic converter.


The The Honda Accord debuts as a hatchback, followed by the Accord Sedan in 1979.


Civic CVCC tops the U.S. EPA's first-ever list of America's most fuel-efficient automobiles with an EPA fuel economy rating of 40 miles per gallon.


Honda of America Mfg., Inc. begins producing the Accord at an all-new plant in Marysville, Ohio, making Honda the first Japanese automaker to build cars in America.*


Honda introduces the 1984 CRX-HF, the first car to achieve an EPA fuel economy rating in excess of 50 miles per gallon.


Honda launches Acura, the first luxury nameplate from a Japanese automaker, with sales of the Integra sports sedan and its flagship Legend through 60 U.S. Acura dealers.


The Honda Accord Coupe becomes the first-ever U.S.-built automobile to be exported from the U.S. to Japan.*


Accord is the first vehicle from an international automaker to earn the title of America's best-selling automobile.

Honda's second U.S auto plant, in East Liberty, Ohio, begins production of Honda Civic vehicles.*


The Acura NSX debuts as the world's first aluminum-bodied automobile and the first to employ Honda's now-legendary VTEC (Variable Timing and Left Electronic Control) engine technology.


The 1991 Accord Wagon debuts as the first Honda vehicle to be designed, developed and manufactured in America.


Honda enters the IndyCar open-wheel racing series.


The 1995 Civic is the first automobile to meet California's Low-Emission Vehicle (LEV) exhaust emissions standards.


Honda Transmission Mfg. of America, Inc., begins production of automatic transmissions at a new plant in Russells Point, Ohio.


1998 Accord is the first automobile to meet California's Ultra-Low-Emission Vehicle (ULEV) exhaust emissions standards. American Honda begins leasing the Honda EV Plus, the first four-passenger battery-electric vehicle powered by advanced nickel-metal hydride batteries, and an early example of Honda's effort to advance Zero-Emissions Vehicle technology.


Honda introduces the low-emission natural-gas powered Civic GX; in 2001 it is deemed the cleanest internal-combustion engine ever tested by the U.S. EPA.


The original 2000 Honda Insight is launched as America's first gasoline-electric hybrid automobile and the most fuel-efficient automobile in America with an EPA rating of 70 miles per gallon.


The U.S.-designed, -developed and -manufactured 2001 Civic Coupe is the first compact car in America to earn a 5-star safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) for both frontal and side impacts.

Honda Manufacturing of Alabama, LLC, begins production of Odyssey minivans at Honda's third U.S. auto plant, in Lincoln, Alabama. *It is the first auto plant in America to operate as a zero waste-to-landfill facility.

Honda is the first mass-market automaker to introduce an entire line of automobiles that meet or exceed California's LEV (Low-Emissions Vehicle) exhaust emissions standards.


The 2003 Civic Hybrid becomes Honda’s first mass-produced automobile to apply gasoline-electric powertrain technology.

The Honda FCX becomes the world’s first furel cell vehicles ceretifed by the U.S. EPA for everyday use.


American Honda launches its industry-leading “Safety for Everyone” campaign to apply a core suite of advanced safety features to all Honda and Accura automobiles regardless of vehicles size or price.


The Spallino family takes delivery of a Honda FCX, becoming the world’s first individual customer for a fuel cell car.


Honda Precision Parts of Georgia, LLC, opens a new plant in Tallapoosa, Georgia, for the production of automobile transmissions.

Honda R&D Americas, Inc. opens its new Advanced Design Studio in Pasadena, California, to create advanced design concepts for future Honda and Acura vehicles


Honda R&D Americas, Inc. opens its new Acura Design Studio in Torrance, California, for the styling design of future Acura automobiles.

The Union of Concerned Scientists recognizes Honda as the *greenest automaker* in America for the fourth consecutive time.


Honda commences production of the FCX Clarity in Japan on the world’s first production line dedicated to the manufacture of advanced, zero-emissions fuel cell vehicles. Lease sales begin for customers in Southern California.

Honda Manufacturing of Indiana, LLC, begins producing Civic sedans at the company’s fourth U.S. auto plant, in Greensburg, Indiana*


The 2010 Insight launches in March with an MSRP of $19,800**, making it the most affordable gas-electric hybrid car in America.

Acura becomes the first-ever automobile nameplate whose entire lineup of new vehicles achieves (in a single model year) both a 5-star crash safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and a “Top Safety Pick” rating from the privately run Insurance Institue for Highway Safety (IIHS).

American Honda Motor Co., Inc. marks 50 years of operations in the U.S. on June 11, 2009, and renews its commitment to exceed the expectations of its customers and society.


Honda Aircraft Company, Inc., announced that it has successfully completed the first flight of its FAA-conforming HondaJet advanced light business jet.

East Liberty auto plant of Honda of America Mfg, Inc. attains milestone of 4 million automobiles produced.

Marysville Auto Plant of Honda of America Mfg. Inc. becomes first Honda production source outside Japan to produce 10 million automobiles.


Honda Fit EV makes world debut at Los Angeles Auto Show.

Honda announces Earth Dreams Technology (new series of powertrain technologies for automobiles)


Honda Aircraft Company (HACI) begins HondaJet production.

Honda sells millionth hybrid automobile.

Honda builds millionth automobile for export from U.S.


Honda debuts LaneWatch™ technology on the 2013 Honda Accord.


HondaJet receives type certification from FAA and starts delivery.

Honda builds 30 millionth automobile in North America.


Honda brings back the Civic Hatchback to the United States.

Honda reaches 100 million worldwide automobile production milestone.


Honda releases the redesigned 2018 Accord and 2018 Odyssey.


Honda Pledges $1 Million to Nationwide Children’s Hospital to Improve Mobility for all Children.

*Using domestic and globally sourced parts.

**MSRP excluding tax, license, registration, destination charge, and options. Dealer prices may vary.

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