Honda Cuts Jobs in Britain as European Demand Fails to Meet Expectations

2012 Honda Civic 1 photo
Photo: Honda
Faced with production overcapacity at its Swindon facilities in Britain, carmaker Honda has announced it will cut 500 jobs. Car plant two will be shut down, costing 340 full-time jobs plus another 160 temporary positions.
The plant employs about 3,000 workers that build the Civic, Jazz and CR-V for the UK and European markets. But due to slow demand, Honda has had to scale back production, going from three shifts down to just two.

"Over the last 12 months, we haven't seen the growth we'd anticipated. With no increase forecast for the next couple of years, we must scale our manufacturing activity accordingly," said Ian Howells, senior vice president of Honda Motor Europe.

Last year, Honda sold 140,094 vehicles in Europe, a decrease of 15% compared to the previous year. Despite all signs pointing towards recovery in 2014 for the overall new car market, company estimates are down to 120,000 vehicles this year.

"However, with the restructuring we're taking today, and our new model plans, we remain confident in the long-term future of our Swindon plant, the official continued.

Honda has tried hard over the past years to secure a stronger foothold on the European market. Their new Civic 5-door, Civic Estate and CR-V have been well received. Last year, Honda also started making a brand new 1.6 i-DTEC diesel engine with 120 hp. A new Jazz supermini is expected to arrive in Europe next year, together with a brand new B-segment SUV which in Japan has been launched under the name "Vezel".
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About the author: Mihnea Radu
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Mihnea's favorite cars have already been built, the so-called modern classics from the '80s and '90s. He also loves local car culture from all over the world, so don't be surprised to see him getting excited about weird Japanese imports, low-rider VWs out of Germany, replicas from Russia or LS swaps down in Florida.
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