According to Automotive News, Honda has instituted a new Voluntary Retirement Program that allows employees 59 years of age and older who have 15 or more years with the company "to retire early with some enhancements to their retirement plan." Honda reserves the right to reject applicants, so apparently not everyone will qualify.

Employees who are accepted into the program will receive a year's base salary, a premium for each year they've put in at the company, retiree health care and COBRA dental and vision coverage. Honda last made such an offer in April of 2009 amidst the global economic meltdown and said in a statement that it has no plans to offer any more early-retirement programs in the foreseeable future.

Honda says it is expecting a "relatively small" number of employees to opt for the buyout package.

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