Millionth Motorcycle Made at Marysville, Honda is Happy
At the end of July the millionth motorcycle rolled off the assemblyline at Honda's Marysville Motorcycle Plant in Marysville, Ohio. Honda's Marysville plant was its first in the U.S.; it started production on September 10, 1979. The plant's millionth bike was a Gold Wing Aspencade.
The Gold Wing motorcycle is Marysville's premier product and has been manufactured exclusively in Ohio since 1980. All products built at the Marysville Motorcycle Plant are made only in Ohio, including the new Valkyrie, Shadow 1100, Shadow American Classic Edition and FourTrax ATVs.
Speaking about the Marysville plant, plant manager Ray Wilt said "This is one of the most flexible, highly integrated manufacturing plants in the United States. We build our products from basic raw materials -- stamping, welding, molding plastics, and assembly into motorcycles and ATVs which are shipped to customers all over the world." About 20 percent of the Marysville plant's production is exported to 43 countries.
The Gold Wing 1520cc engine is also made in Ohio at Honda's Anna Engine Plant. Production includes casting and machining of the engine block and transmission case from raw aluminum, then assembly of the 6-cylinder overhead cam powerplant.
"The Gold Wing engine is one of the most complex, precision engines ever manufactured by Honda," said Jim Kelly, assistant manager of Assembly at the Anna Engine Plant. "The parts we make are cast and machined to tolerances measured in microns -- less than one-third the thickness of a human hair."
The Anna Engine Plant began production in July 1985 with Gold Wing engines. The plant now makes Accord, Acura CL and Civic engines and drivetrain components, as well.
Production of the one millionth vehicle at the Marysville Motorcycle Plant occurred during the 8th Annual HomeComing event, a national rally which attracts more than 5,000 motorcyclists to the Marysville Motorcycle Plant. "It's fitting that we were able to share this one millionth milestone with so many of our customers," said Wilt. "This milestone belongs to them as much as it does to our associates. Without the support of our customers and the community, this could not have happened."
Customer demand drives changes at the Marysville Motorcycle Plant, too. Production has tripled in the past five years to more than 180,000 a year. Demand is up for all models produced at Marysville, especially the new Valkyrie -- a performance custom motorcycle that is captivating riders with its style and muscle -- and the FourTrax line of hardworking ATVs that are popular in the U.S. and opening new markets overseas.
MOTORCYCLES PRODUCED Marysville Motorcycle Plant Honda of America Mfg. GL1500 Gold Wing Universally known as the world's premier luxury touring motorcycle, the Gold Wing is The One Millionth manufactured exclusively at the Marysville Vehicle Manufac- Motorcycle Plant. The best-selling touring tured on July 26, motorcycle in America, the Gold Wing is also 1996 exported to customers around the world. The Gold Wing 1520cc 6-cylinder OHC engine has been manufactured at Honda of America's Engine Plant in nearby Anna, Ohio since start-up of the engine facility in July 1985. Domestic suppliers in Ohio and throughout the U.S. provide most of the parts and materials for Gold Wing production, making it truly one of America's finest motorcycles. GL1500C Valkyrie The most imposing and exciting custom motorcycle ever is another exclusive model made in Ohio. The Valkyrie's high-performance 6-cylinder engine is made at the Anna Engine Plant, the home of precision engine manufacturing. With 1520cc, six carburetors and a hot-rod heart, this 6-cylinder engine has what it takes to dominate the streets. Shadow 1100 and Together with the Valkyrie, these two Shadow American Classic custom motorcycles make the Marysville Edition Motorcycle Plant the custom bike production headquarters for Honda. Powered by a liquid-cooled 1099cc V-twin, both Shadows possess low-end torque and mid-range power for excellent rideability around town or on the open road. Both Shadow models also feature a factory custom color paint program that allows customers to choose their own color and logo combinations. TRX FourTrax The all-round versatility and unsurpassed Utility Vehicles reliability of Honda FourTrax utility vehicles * 200 Type II have made them America's top sellers for years. * 300 Made exclusively at the Marysville Motorcycle * 300 4X4 Plant, these FourTrax vehicles have a high local * Foreman 400 content from suppliers throughout the U.S. Production of these popular models has risen dramatically during the '90s as customers around the world prize their hardworking abilities and easy-to-use qualities. Produced in both standard and 4X4 models, all FourTrax models are powered by durable four-stroke engines that produce ideal power and torque for all-purpose use. MOTORCYCLE PRODUCTION 1979-1996 Marysville Motorcycle Plant Honda of America Mfg. One million vehicles produced from September 10, 1979 to July 26, 1996 * One millionth is 1997 Gold Wing Aspencade. * Breakout of one million production: Gold Wing 315,000 Other Motorcycles 195,000 ATVs 490,000 Total 1,000,000 * Gold Wing Series GL1100 Models 1980-83 GL1200 models 1984-87 GL1500 models 1988-current -Standard -Interstate -Interstate -Interstate -Aspencade -Aspencade -SEi -SE * CR250R ELSINORE 1980 * CBX 1980 * CB900C CUSTOM 1981-82 * CB1000C CUSTOM 1983 * VF1100S V65 SABRE 1984-85 * VF1100C V65 MAGNA 1984-86 * VT1100C SHADOW 1985-current * VFR700F INTERCEPTOR 1987 * CBR1000F HURRICANE 1987-88 * VF700C MAGNA 1987 * VF750C MAGNA 1988 * VT700C SHADOW 1987 * VT800C SHADOW 1988 * VT1100C2 SHADOW American Classic Edition 1995-current * GL1500C VALKYRIE 1997-current * FOURTRAX 200 1990-91 * FOURTRAX 200 Type II 1991-current * FOURTRAX 300 1990-current * FOURTRAX 300 4X4 1990-current * FOURTRAX 400 4X4 1995-current * Listings are for model year
Paul Dever -- The Auto Channel