Honda Manufacturing of Indiana is preparing to increase production and add as many as 1,000 new jobs at its Greensburg factory.
The new workers will build a version of the Honda Civic which runs on natural gas. The added production shift will start October 24, and contribute to the production of as many as 400,000 vehicles at the plant annually. Honda Manufacturing of Indiana Spokeswoman Anita Sipes says the increase has been planned since 2008.
“The Japan earthquake and tsunami in March impacted our production significantly,” she says. “We were producing at only 50 percent for several months throughout the summer and just in early September got back to 100 percent. But while we were at that half capacity we announced that we were going to be adding a second shift so I think a lot of people were surprised and pleased. It also gave hope to our area and also to the Central Indiana, South Central Indiana area that we hire from.”
The natural gas version represents only a fraction of the Civics produced by the plant. According to Sipes, most orders are for the traditional gas powered vehicle.
Production of the alternative-fuel Civic began Tuesday, though the car will be available at just one Indiana dealership and according to a spokesperson for American Honda.