Associates at the Indiana Auto Plant (IAP) today celebrated the start of mass production of the all-new 2022 Civic Hatchback at the Greensburg plant. Honda has built Civic models in America since 1986, but this is the first time the Civic Hatchback has been built in the U.S.
A $50.2 million investment in IAP helped prepare the facility for mass production of the all-new version of Civic. The investment includes a building expansion for laser braze technology for the roof of the Civic Hatchback, the latest new model for the plant. Other new processes include a major increase in the use of high-performance structural adhesives for improved body rigidity and the application of acoustic spray foam to the Civic body structure for the first time for enhanced cabin quietness.
IAP started production operations by building the Honda Civic in October 2008. As the first Honda plant in the U.S. to build the 2022 Civic Hatchback, this all-new model represents yet another production first for the Greensburg plant. IAP also was the first Honda plant in the U.S. to build the Acura ILX (2012), Honda Insight (2019) and CR-V Hybrid (2020).
“We are proud the Indiana Auto Plant has been chosen to lead production in North America for an all-new model like the 2022 Civic Hatchback that is playing an increasingly important role in the U.S. market,” said Larry Geise, plant lead at IAP. “Being selected to build the Civic Hatchback speaks to the experienced workforce we have here in Indiana and highlights the confidence Honda has in our associates to build the quality cars and light trucks our customers love.”
Reintroduced to the U.S. market with the 10th-generation Civic in 2016, Civic Hatchback has proven itself a breakout hit and has grown to account for more than 20 percent of all Civic sales. With more than 1.7 million units sold in 10th generation form, Civic has been the No. 1 selling vehicle in America – car or light truck – with first-time buyers, Millennials, Gen Z and multicultural customers over the last five years1.
The 2022 Civic Hatchback builds upon the Civic Sedan’s clean and simple exterior design direction in a fresh and exhilarating new way. It also promises driving enthusiasts an even more dynamic experience, with an upgraded 6-speed manual transmission available with both the naturally aspirated 2.0-liter and 1.5-liter turbocharged engines.
Manufacturing the 2022 Honda Civic Hatchback
IAP is one of only two Honda plants globally currently producing the all-new 2022 Civic Hatchback. Honda associates in Indiana leveraged their decade-plus of experience with Civic production to take on a number of new challenges to build the all-new 2022 Civic Hatchback. This included new production technologies and processes.
- Several IAP associates lived and worked in Japan for up to two years to collaborate with the R&D team and manufacturing associates from around the world who will build the all-new Civic. This collaboration helped lead to changes in design and processes to make it easier for IAP associates to build Civic and achieve a high level of quality.
- A new lightweight composite (resin) hatch replaces the previous steel structure, which contributes to a more coupe-like design and high fuel economy. Associates at IAP used virtual training to develop the processes required to install the new hatchback, including a lift assist device to improve associate ergonomics when putting the tailgate in place.
- IAP associates worked closely with Honda R&D team members to develop the strategy for application of structural adhesive to the Civic body to create the most rigid body ever for Civic Hatchback. The adhesive enhances safety and dynamic performance, reduces weight for fuel efficiency and increases cabin comfort. The solution created by IAP associates included investment in the installation of nine new robots to apply the adhesive.
- Civic Hatchback features a laser brazed roof for the first time, employing Honda’s latest dual beam laser technology to join the roof to the body side panels for a seamless exterior appearance and an even stronger vehicle body. In addition to learning the new process, IAP associates devised a 57,600 sq. ft. expansion to make room for the new laser brazing equipment.
- IAP is applying spray foam to hollow portions of the vehicle’s body structure for the first time to reduce noise transmission for a quieter cabin. IAP associates studied the new hatchback design to identify where and how to apply the foam, resulting in the addition of new equipment and a critical change in the tailgate area to ensure high quality.
- Honda’s Anna Engine Plant in Anna, Ohio builds the 1.5-liter turbo 4-cylinder engine, while Honda of Canada Mfg. produces the 2.0-liter, 4-cylinder engine.