TOKYO – Honda Motor Co. said it will resume limited vehicle assembly in Japan on April 11, after having its plants offline for four straight weeks, as automakers inch toward recovery following the country's devastating earthquake.
Honda, which had previously said its two domestic assembly plants would be down at least through April 4, says both the Sayama and Suzuka factories will be running by April 11. Honda cautioned that restored vehicle assembly in Japan will continue at only half of its normal rate.
The company will also resume production of parts and replacement parts on April 4 for shipment overseas. That move should help alleviate parts shortages in North America, where Honda has said it will cut output by as much as half amid stalled deliveries from Japan.
Mazda Motor Corp. also announced it would resume limited assembly at both of its Japanese passenger car plants on April 4 – with newly obtained parts.
Mazda is currently operating only one plant, its Hiroshima factory, and all production until now has been based on parts in stock. It did not say when full production would restart.