Honda Company – Born from a Rejection
Honda Company is a multinational corporate house based in Japan which is known for its extensive line of automobiles, motorcycles, aircrafts and power equipments. It is the world’s largest manufacturer of
motorcycles. It is also the largest manufacturer of internal combustion engines and the 8th largest manufacturer of automobiles in the world. Its vehicles are extremely popular in the global market and are known for their appealing designs and superb efficiency.
Founding Date: October 1946
Company Name: Honda Motor Co., Ltd.
Country: Minato, Tokyo, Japan
Company Website: www.honda.com
In the Beginning
Honda Company was founded in 1946 by Soichiro Honda. He was extremely passionate about automobiles from a very young age and this is what encouraged him to step foot into the automobile arena. Initially he was hired by the automotive giants Toyota to supply piston rings for their cars. However, this opportunity went down the drain when the company rejected his consignment citing that the product quality was not very good. He did not lose heart with this setback. Rather he approached various Japanese companies and found a way to improve the quality of his piston rings.
Once he had gathered enough skills, he started manufacturing highly efficient piston rings which Toyota approved of. They started demanding more of these rings from his company on a steady basis. Once, his operations grew, Honda went on to establish Tokai Sekei which was a bigger manufacturing unit for the piston rings.
Toyota soon acquired 40% of Honda Company’s share. However, following a string of problems, Soichiro sold the company to Toyota.
Later in 1946, Soichiro established Honda Technical Research Institute which aimed at manufacturing custom made bicycles with motor. The establishment operated from a 170 sq.ft area. Honda’s hard work and persistence finally paid off when in 1949, his company launched a motorcycle called Model D, which was fully manufactured by Honda unit. The vehicle was efficient and low priced, leading to high demand.
Becoming the Automotive Giants
Model D motorcycle proved to be a new beginning to the company. The continued innovating the designs and went on to become the largest manufacturer of motorcycles in 1964.
However, the company was quite keen on diversifying into development of other automobiles and kept up with its research. In 1963, it launched its first mini pickup truck called T360.
They also launched their first sports car S500 and became a fully fledged automobile manufacturing unit. With the wide acclaim that their automobiles enjoyed, they went on to launch their first luxury line of cars which they named Acura.
They were the first to use the V6 engine in the Honda NSX Supercar in 1991. This too was accepted and applauded by the automotive lovers. The Honda Company continued to improve their models and came up with not only better motorcycles and cars but also diversified into scooters, pumps, generators, engines and motors. In the recent years, it has also ventured into manufacture of mountain bikes and aircrafts.
The Honda Company
In spite of competitors like Volkswagen, General Motors, Hyundai etc., Honda is the eighth largest automobile manufacturer in the world. With more than 198,561 employees working for it, the company recorded annual revenue of ¥11.85 trillion in 2014.