Honda invests £200m in Swindon plant

Posted by Tom Line in Personal Finance on 9 April 2015 - Tom worked as a Credit Analyst at checkmyfile until 2015

Honda, the Japanese car manufacturer, has given a boost to Swindon’s economy and the UK car industry as a whole as it unveiled plans to commit £200m in investment to produce the next generation Civic Hatchback at the site. The firm has now invested a total of £2.2bn in Swindon since 1985.

The plant will now become the global production centre for the car, at a time when UK car production is booming. The cars built at the site will then be exported across Europe and other big international markets.

The announcement tops off a great week for the UK car industry after Jaguar Land Rover and Chinese owner of the London Taxi Company, Geely, both unveiled investment plans at their respective facilities. Jaguar announced on Thursday that it would spend £600m at its facilities in the West Midlands. Geely announced on the same day plans to invest £250m building a new factory in Coventry. Up to 1,000 jobs will be created developing new, efficient black taxis at the plant.

Mike Hawes of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders says, “It has been a fantastic week for UK automotive. Honda’s decision to build its next generation Honda Civic, a global car in an important and growing segment, here in the UK caps off a record six days – the first time three manufacturers have announced nine-figure investments over such a short period of time”.

The recent investment by Honda will come as a relief for workers at the plant, where output has fallen recently. Just last year the company cut jobs and production at the site. The factory can produce a maximum 250,000 cars a year but it is currently working at half that capacity.

In the years of 2013 and 2014, £7bn was invested in the UK car industry, driving production upwards. In 2014, over 1.5m cars were produced in the UK and it is likely these investments will fuel this further.

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