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Seven Interesting Facts About Honda

We may not put as much thought into it as we’d like to admit, but when shopping for a vehicle, do you ever consider the history of the manufacturer? Sometimes, the history of an esteemed vehicle manufacturer is one filled with technological evolution, decades of reliability testing, and expertise that goes beyond the veil of automobiles. Before you shop for a used Honda for sale near you, I want to take a moment to walk you through what I consider to be seven interesting facts about Honda.

Whether you’ve heard a fact or two, there’s no denying that Honda’s continued success is nothing unusual, given how exploratory the manufacturer has been in other realms of transportation. However, Honda’s inspiration is so palpable, it can be felt in the products of its competitors. With that out of the way, here are my top seven interesting facts about Honda.

#7: Silicon Valley Over 20 Years

Alright, it may not sound too far-fetched, but manufacturers such as Honda house more than just vehicle production plants. You have likely heard of Silicon Valley—and if not, all you need to know is that (a.) Silicon Valley is famously located in Northern California, and (b.) for over half a century, has been the spot for technological advancements. Honda has retained a strong presence in Silicon Valley since 2000. The facility that Honda brought to Silicon Valley was in charge of conceptualizing new technologies for its automobiles and bringing the ideas to life. Around a decade later, it would officially open its new Honda Silicon Valley Lab—later combined with its R&D department under a new name, Honda Innovations.

Many advancements took place within the last decade, with Honda’s R&D engineers taking on the mountainous task of developing assistive features to complement the increasingly durable designs of its vehicles. The safety suite is known as Honda Safety Sense and is available on a majority of Honda vehicles sold today. It was here at Honda Innovations where Honda would then develop some of its most notable tech, such as the HondaLink infotainment center. Apple and Google, which are also located in Silicon Valley, worked alongside Honda in a partnership to bring features such as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto to their lineup.

A white 2021 Honda Civic Type R is shown from the front driving on a highway.

#6: Best-Selling Brand in Six States

In 2021, the Honda CR-V was the best-selling model in five states. Connecticut, New Jersey, Virginia, New York, and Illinois all reported that Honda’s popular SUV ousted the likes of Ford, Toyota, and Nissan. If not in first, the CR-V came in a close second place in states such as Massachusetts and Pennsylvania. The CR-V may not have been the best-selling vehicle in California last year, but Honda’s beloved Civic sedan takes that spot. Especially on the East Coast, Honda’s popularity is likely due to elements such as harsh weather, which is one area in which your Honda vehicle and its reliability can shine.

#5: The Founder of Honda Lived Until 1991

Regardless of when you were born, the chances that you were born after Honda’s foundation are becoming more likely each year. Honda was founded by Mr. Takeo Fujisawa and Mr. Soichiro Honda, the latter of which the company would be named after. Honda vehicles can be dated back to the late 1940s.

It started with humble beginnings, with the company developing a motorbikes lineup headed by a 40-year-old Soichiro Honda. Throughout the years, his role at the company lasted nearly 30 years. Within that time, he saw his company become an international juggernaut—albeit he would, unfortunately, pass away in 1991. Mr. Fujisawa had passed away a few years prior in 1988; however, both founders lived to see the introduction of tech such as cellphones, and both CD players and airbags installed within the vehicles of the company they founded.

#4: The First Accord Was a Hatchback

Anyone who wasn’t born before the 1970s may not know this, but the very first Honda Accord wasn’t a sedan, but a hatchback. How come you’ve likely never heard of this? The exclusive hatchback Accord didn’t last long, with the sedan introduced shortly after the hatchback made its debut. Although the sedan is the more recognizable of the two—and undoubtedly the most popular, as every other Accord configuration has now been discontinued—Honda continuously produced the hatchback Accord until the late 1980s. To say the Accord has been a successful automobile would be a gross understatement, and its most notable accolade is being the best-selling passenger car of all time in the United States.

A silver 2021 Honda Passport Elite is shown from the front while parked on a beach.

#3: The Realm of Artificial Intelligence

Honda produces more than cars. In fact, Honda has been a key player in the formation of vehicle-based artificial intelligence. Part of this mission began in 2005, with the introduction of a friendly little robot named ASIMO. Back in the mid-2000s, it wasn’t uncommon to see television commercials starring the titular robot, and what initially began as a forward-thinking concept has slowly become a reality.

While ASIMO is designed to service humans, and likely won’t see a commercialized release until the 2030s, Honda has had other plans in motion to continue artificial intelligence research. For example, in December 2021, Honda announced a partnership with Helm.AI. Their work revolves around autonomous driving and the various assistive technologies that we see in safety suites—such as Honda Safety Sense.

#2: You Can Learn How to Fly with Honda

Okay, your Honda vehicle isn’t going to suddenly begin flying. What we mean is that roughly an hour away from Tokyo, you’ll find the Honda Airport in Okegawa, Japan. Owned by the subsidiary of Honda, Honda Airways Co., the Honda Airport offers flight classes that span fifteen months. During this time, pilots will learn a host of different flight mechanics, from the basics to more complex maneuvering. The pre-requisites for the flight school are simple enough: you have to be between 18 and 60 years old, have graduated high school, and pass the medical examination.

Pilots in training will use a Cessna Type 172S Type for practice. But, if you happen to be a millionaire, you can bring a private plane—should you own one. Honda also offers an array of training software that can be utilized by the students in the form of Flight Training Devices (FTD.) For instrument flight training, Honda has its students visit the Oita Airport—located in Kunisaki, Oita, Japan—which is roughly a 90-minute flight from the Honda Airlines facility.

#1: 23 Years to America

This one is rather simple: Honda didn’t sell their first automobile in the United States until the Honda N600 was made available to the market in 1969. As you may remember from our third fact, Honda opened its doors in the late 1940s. Of course, becoming an international super company isn’t something that happens overnight. Especially looking back nearly 80 years ago, the automotive industry was at but a fraction of the strength and popularity it has today.

Considering Mr. Soichiro Honda had been working on conceptualizing the Honda brand in 1946, 23 years passed before his vehicles would begin selling in the United States. It’s interesting to think that over 50 years ago, we began seeing Honda vehicles on our roads; for residents in Japan, though, it was a familiar sight to them twenty years prior.