Blue Energy, the recently announced joint venture between Honda Motor Company and GS Yuasa, has begun construction of a new battery manufacturing plant. A groundbreaking was held this week for the Osadano Plant in Fukuchiyama, Kyoto where Blue Energy will develop and produce lithium ion batteries for future Honda hybrid vehicles. Production of batteries at the factory should start in the fall of 2010.

Honda has repeatedly said that it doesn't see plug-in vehicles as being particularly practical in the foreseeable future and doesn't plan any pure battery electric vehicles or even plug-in hybrids. Instead, the lithium ion batteries will be used in new hybrid models to replace nickel metal hydride with a smaller, lighter energy storage package. The first and so far only Honda with a lithium battery is actually the FCX Clarity fuel cell sedan.

[Source: Honda]

Blue Energy Begins Construction of New Plant

KYOTO, Japan, April 21, 2009 - Blue Energy Co., Ltd., a new joint venture company between GS Yuasa and Honda for the manufacturing, sales and R&D of lithium-ion batteries for hybrid vehicles, held a groundbreaking ceremony to mark the start of construction of its Osadano Plant in Fukuchiyama, Kyoto.

The groundbreaking ceremony was attended by approximately 100 dignitaries and guests, including Keiji Yamada, the governor of Kyoto prefecture and Masaji Matsuyama, the mayor of Fukuchiyama city, as well as Makoto Yoda, president and CEO of GS Yuasa Corporation, Takeo Fukui, president and CEO of Honda Motor Co., Ltd., and Masahiko Oshitani, president and CEO of Blue Energy Co., Ltd.

The new plant is scheduled to begin production sometime around fall 2010.

About Blue Energy Co., Ltd.
Establishment April 1, 2009
Headquarters 1, Inobanba-cho, Nishinosho, Kisshoin, Minami-ku, Kyoto
Capital 3 billion yen
Future capital increase to 15 billion yen is planned.
Capital Ratio 51% GS Yuasa Power Supply Ltd. (a wholly-owned subsidiary of GS Yuasa Corporation)
49% Honda Motor Co., Ltd.
Description of business Manufacturing, sales and R&D of high-performance lithium-ion batteries
President and CEO Masahiko Oshitani

About the new Osadano Plant
Location 1-37 Osadano-cho, Fukuchiyama, Kyoto
(within the property of GS Yuasa's Osadano operation)
Lot Size 16,000m2
Investment amount Approximately 25 billion yen

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