Honda CEO speech presents green initiatives

In his 2006 Year-End Speech, the CEO of Honda, Takeo Fukui, outlined several green initiatives that the company will undertake in 2007 including building a new resource/energy efficient automobile plant; advancing their engine technology in the areas of petrols, diesels, hybrids; flex fuel and fuel cell vehicles; and building an experimental cellulosic ethanol plant, amongst others.
The state-of-the-art "Green Factory" automobile plant Honda plans to build in Yorii, Japan aims to achieve the world's top level of resource/energy efficiency and will reduce the amount of CO2 emitted per automobile produced by 20 percent compared to the 2000 level. Highly efficient production and logistics systems will be used in the plant Fukui said there will be a people-friendly environment for the workers.

The petrol engine technology currently used in Honda models is set to be upgraded with advanced VTEC and VCM technologies for automobiles and "super-low friction engines" for motorcycles; all aimed at improving fuel efficiency and improving emissions.

Honda confirmed that they will expand their hybrid program to a smaller vehicle to be offered in 2009 at a price level below that of the Civic Hybrid.

Diesel technology hasn't been left out either, with Honda planning to introduce a medium-to-large size diesel vehicle. "Super-clean diesel engine" technology will be introduced within three years that will meet the stringent U.S. Tier 2 Bin 5 emission standards.

Honda has recently started selling the Civic FFV flexible fuel vehicle in Brazil which can be run on petrol-ethanol blends between E20 and E100. The Fit FFV is set to be introduced this month. To further bioethanol research, an experimental cellulosic ethanol plant will be built within Honda's Fundamental Technology Research Center in Wako in 2007.

Coming a year later in 2008 will be a mass-produced fuel cell model based on the technology and design of the FCX Concept.

In addition to these vehicle advances, Honda has a new solar cell subsidiary, Honda Soltec Co., Ltd., which was established earlier this month. This company will begin full-scale sales of solar cells when mass production begins at the new plant in Kumamoto in fall 2007.

[Source: GreenCarCongress]

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