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Honda pulls plug on US bike production

Inefficient Ohio plant to close next year

HONDA ARE to stop making motorcycles in the United States next year and transfer the work to Japan, pulling the plug on its first U.S plant.
The 330,000-square-foot Marysville, Ohio, plant, built in 1979, turns out large Gold Wing touring and cruiser motorcycles. The work will be shifted to a plant in Japan that can produce bikes more efficiently.

The Ohio plant employs 450 workers. Honda said there will be no layoffs when production ends in spring 2009. The workers will remain with the company, helping produce cars, trucks, engines and parts and filling other jobs at Honda's operations in west-central Ohio, the company said.

"There were a lot of people who felt disappointment," said plant manager Jan Gansheimer, noting that many employees are motorcycle enthusiasts who have spent much of their careers at the plant. "There were some emotional considerations."
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