Honda preparing for construction on new area battery plant

Honda’s new plant began with a $23 million land purchase in Fayette County in November.

Construction crews are preparing land for a new $3.5 billion joint venture EV battery battery plant between Honda and LG Energy Solution that will be built about an hour’s drive east of Dayton.

The journey to the company’s planned Fayette County plant began with the purchase of 454 acres for nearly $23.3 million in November.

According to Fayette County property records, Honda Development & Manufacturing of America LLC paid $23,268,935 for 454 acres from Martin Land Co. on Nov. 7.

The plant will built just west of Ohio 729 and south of Interstate 71. The land encompasses Bluegrass Farms of Ohio’s soybean processing plant to the east, south and west. That plant’s address is 9768 Milledgeville-Jeffersonville Road, Jeffersonville.

The new plant does not yet have a permanent address, a Honda spokesman said. He said an official groundbreaking for the plant will be announced soon.

With plans to create an Ohio-centric “EV Hub,” Honda plans $700 million in re-tooling on three existing auto plants, in addition to the new vehicle battery plant. The company plans to continue producing conventional internal combustion engine automobiles for some time.

In all, the joint venture plans an investment of $3.5 billion, creating 2,200 jobs, pending final government approvals and incentives. The companies’ overall investment in the effort is projected to reach $4.4 billion.

All batteries produced by the new JV plant in Fayette County will be supplied exclusively to Honda plants in North America to power battery-electric vehicles sold in North America.

The plant aims to have approximately 40 gigawatt-hours or “GWh” of annual production capacity as it starts mass production of pouch-type lithium-ion batteries by the end of 2025.

Several dozen earth moving machines are preparing the land for construction this month.

Meanwhile, the automaker is looking to what its leaders believe are the electric future. On Jan. 25, Honda said 2023 will mark the start of pre-sales for the “Prologue,” Honda’s first electric SUV. Deliveries of the Prologue will start in early 2024, the company said.

The rise of hybrid volume of the CR-V and Accord will mean a three-fold increase in production output of the hybrid-electric powertrain in Ohio, the company also said.

“Like the rest of the industry we’re not completely out of the woods with supply issues yet, but we’re optimistic the Honda and Acura brands will achieve higher sales volumes this year,” Honda Vice President of Sales Mamadou Diallo said. “With our new models, from our refreshed light truck line-up to the increased hybrid volume and our continued commitment to fun-to-drive cars, our brands are well positioned for 2023.”

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