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Old 02-21-2006, 12:52 PM   #1
NYCshopper
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Default Honda to restructure R&D in bid to speed decision-making

http://www.marketwatch.com/News/Stor...oogle&keyword=

Quote:
Honda to restructure R&D in bid to speed decision-making

TOKYO (MarketWatch) -- Honda Motor Co. (7267.TO) said Tuesday that it will introduce in April a new organizational structure for its research and development subsidiary in order to give researchers more authority and speed up decision-making.

The Japanese car maker aims to more smoothly handle the increasing complexities of technology and of the growing number of vehicles under development.

The restructuring is part of Honda President Takeo Fukui's efforts to strengthen the company's core elements, including R&D, production, and sales and service.

Under the new scheme, Honda will set up separate development branches for the Honda and upscale Acura brands. This is a reflection of the company's strategy to enhance the two brands' identities ahead of its plan to introduce the Acura in Japan for the first time in 2008.

The automaker's subsidiary, Honda R&D Co., will have five centers, with each focusing on specific areas such as automobile development and motorcycle development.

Currently, regional R&D centers operate under Honda R&D.
The new centers will have separate offices for planning, product development, technology development and administration with clearly defined roles.

The heads of those offices will have primary authority to make operational decisions, which are currently the responsibility of the regional R&D center heads.
Looks like they are following Toyota's lead with what they did with Lexus, in separating the two brands.
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Old 02-21-2006, 09:21 PM   #2
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Is this a sign that someday they might give up on the idea of building the entire Acura line up based on the Accord platform alone? (well, and the Civic platform for the RSX) People want more than a suped up Accord when they are paying >$40K for a car.
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Old 02-21-2006, 10:08 PM   #3
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More prototypes that make production would be nice.
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Old 02-21-2006, 10:47 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Len
Is this a sign that someday they might give up on the idea of building the entire Acura line up based on the Accord platform alone?
Why? When you have a great platform, why do you need to redesign it just because one is a "premium" vehicle and one is a regular olde "mid-line" vehicle?

The platform has next to nothing to do with what the 2 cars will look like (besides sometimes sharing the same wheelbase and overall width dimensions). The Mazda 6 platform is also used on the Ford Fusion, the Mercury Milan, the Lincohn MXK (or whatever they changed the name too), and a tweeked version is used on the new Ford and Lincohn crossovers.

The Ford Freestyle and 500 both share a Volve platform.

This list can go on and on - with many diverse vehicles sharing platforms.
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Old 02-21-2006, 11:26 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hazdaz
Why? When you have a great platform, why do you need to redesign it just because one is a "premium" vehicle and one is a regular olde "mid-line" vehicle?

The platform has next to nothing to do with what the 2 cars will look like (besides sometimes sharing the same wheelbase and overall width dimensions). The Mazda 6 platform is also used on the Ford Fusion, the Mercury Milan, the Lincohn MXK (or whatever they changed the name too), and a tweeked version is used on the new Ford and Lincohn crossovers.

The Ford Freestyle and 500 both share a Volve platform.

This list can go on and on - with many diverse vehicles sharing platforms.
Hazdaz, I know the benefit of platform sharing, and in fact Honda survived the late 90's by doing exactly that, and Nissan went down doing exactly the opposite.

But you can do good things too much. It's not like Toyota just wants to waste their money when they use separate RWD platform for Lexus. Same thing for Infiniti, and in fact even Hyundai is designing a new RWD platform to attack the premium market. Don't want to go RWD? Then at least go AWD like Audi. But if I recall correctly, Honda couldn't fit the SW-AWD + V-8 onto the Accord platform.

The point is, There is no other premium mark that builds their "flagship" on the FWD family sedan platform. Now if Honda has been successful doing that so far, then they need no excuses. But the truth is they haven't.
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Old 02-22-2006, 05:07 AM   #6
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platform sharing is the way it has to be. Now the key is to develop a platform that is so flexible that can accomodate a midsize/large sedan and coupe fwd, rwd, and awd that would be awesome - like nissan/infiniti. Its been done and we all know the success story.
The point is how much Honda wants Honda-Acura to differentiate.
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Old 02-24-2006, 04:49 PM   #7
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title of article is funny, doesn't honda have the fastest product cycle in the business already?
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