LINCOLN, AL – More than 3,000 Honda associates gathered together for the first time in an open courtyard between Honda’s Line 1 and Line 2 operations at the 3.2 million-square-foot facility. Honda stopped production at the entire facility to gather together for a ceremony celebrating the fifth anniversary since the start of production in Alabama on Nov. 14, 2001.
A highlight of the event was the ceremonial shipping of HMA’s 1 millionth vehicle, a Midnight Blue Odyssey EXL that was built at the plant on Nov. 3, 2006. Eight Honda associates – representing the major business and production divisions at the plant – were congratulated by Alabama Gov. Bob Riley as they exited the vehicle. Moments later, the Odyssey was loaded onto a cargo carrier and on its way to a Honda dealership.
“Numbers and milestones measure results, but it is our people – our Honda associates – who are the driving force in all these accomplishments,” said Rick Schostek, senior vice president at HMA. “I know it has only been five years, but it has been such a natural fit – and such a successful venture – that it is difficult to imagine Honda without Alabama, or Alabama without Honda.”
HMA is the sole North American production source of the Odyssey minivan, a designation earned with the start of production of the 2005 model Odyssey. In October, it was announced that HMA would also become the sole production source of the Honda Pilot sport utility vehicle. Since the start of production in 2001, HMA’s production mix breaks down to about 810,000 Odyssey minivans and about 190,000 Pilot SUVs.
HMA employs more than 4,500 associates at its Lincoln facility. Production on the two assembly lines exceeds 300,000 vehicles and V-6 engines annually.