BANGKOK (Kyodo) -- Honda Motor Co. will build a new assembly plant in Thailand and expand the current plant to deal with high demand, the president of Asian Honda Co. said Wednesday.
Hiroshi Kobayashi said Honda will invest 17.15 billion Baht ($570 million) to build its second assembly plant in Prachin Buri Province in eastern Thailand to meet higher demand in both domestic and international markets, particularly for smaller cars.
The new plant will produce subcompact models, while the existing plant in Ayutthaya Province will be expanded to produce more compact and bigger models, Kobayashi said.
The new plant is expected to start operating in April 2015 and the Ayutthaya plant, which has recovered from a severe flood in 2011, will complete its expansion next year.
Production at the two plants could reach 420,000 vehicles a year in 2015, Kobayashi said.
Honda believe its sales in Thailand this year will be relatively stable at around 200,000 vehicles.
As for future flood risks in Thailand, Kobayashi said Honda is aware of the risks but is prepared to deal with floods at both plants.