Honda UK is cutting production at their Swindon Plant – by cutting shifts from 3 to 2 – as weak demand in Europe sees the Swindon Plant running at half capacity.
It’s only a year since Honda announced 800 job cuts at Swindon (which eventually was 550) and now they’re about to cut a further 500 as weak demand – particularly in Europe – sees the Swindon plant producing just half the cars it could.
The Swindon Plant – which builds the Civic, Civic Tourer, CR-V and Jazz (and the Civic Type-R from next year) – has been hard hit by the slump in European sales in the last five years and, despite still strong UK sales, production levels of 120,000 cars a year – just half of the Swindon capacity – are not enough to sustain the current staffing levels.
The jobs cuts last year were blamed on sales numbers not reaching expectations, and it seems Honda’s revised estimated for 2013 were wide of the mark too, so with no expected growth in sales in the next two years Honda are biting the bullet on job cuts now.
Bad news for the UK car industry is, thankfully, a rarity in recent years, but that won’t be much comfort to the now 1,000 plus Swindon workers who’ve lost their jobs in the last year at Honda.