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Honda Global Strategy: Teaming Up with OEMs to Advance CASE Technologies

In September 2020, Honda took a step to establish a strategic alliance with GM. While pursuing a primary mission to increase profitability in the automobile business, Honda aims to drastically improve cost efficiency in North America by expanding the partnership from the next-generation technologies to conventional technologies, such as gasoline-powered and hybrid vehicles.

Honda started working with GM in 2013 in an attempt to co-develop a fuel cell battery system. In 2018, Honda took another step forward, investing in a GM autonomous driving subsidiary Cruise. In April 2020, Honda and GM agreed on co-developing the next-generation electric vehicles (EVs) for the North American market. They will develop two EV models based on GM’s flexible global EV platform with GM’s Ultium batteries. Honda will be in charge of interior/exterior design while GM will manufacture these two models at its facilities. The all-new EVs will be launched as new Honda models in the North American market in the latter half of 2023. Through this alliance, Honda plans to expand a lineup of larger EVs efficiently. In September 2020, they announced that they would start considering a further expansion of the partnership to sharing platforms for the North American market, co-purchasing parts and components, and co-developing connected vehicles. Partnering with GM, the automaker maintaining the largest share in the US automobile market, seems to be efficient in cost reduction.

Honda also announced that it would co-develop fuel cell (FC)-powered heavy-duty trucks with Isuzu in January 2020. Taking this opportunity, Honda aims to expand the applications of FCV technology. In Addition, Honda has been actively teaming up with Chinese companies. In June 2020, Honda and a software development company Neusoft Reach established a connected service joint venture, intending to enhance the Honda Connect services in China. In July, Honda announced a capital tie-up with a battery supplier CATL. Thus, the automaker has been taking a strategic approach to secure batteries for EVs scheduled for production in China in 2022.

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