Japanese kei cars, or "light automobiles," have become increasingly popular in Japan due to legislation making them cheaper to license, insure and pay taxes on. As a byproduct of their small size and small displacement engines, they are also generally quite frugal on gas and low on emissions. Because of their popularity, back in 2006, Honda bought a 51 percent share in Yachiyo Industry, a company which produces kei cars for Honda. Now, they plan to build an entire new plant dedicated to the manufacture of the mini-cars located near their existing Yokkaichi Factory in Japan. The 50 billion yen plant will be producing the front-engine Life and Zest kei cars, as well as the small 660cc engines powering them.
Honda claims that the new plant will be environmentally responsible, but fail to explain how. Based on Honda's past history, we have some amount of faith that the new plant will be as efficient and as eco-friendly as possible. We also appreciate the mini-cars that the new plant will be producing.