Honda is adding the Acura MDX sport utility to the production lineup in Alabama next year, and the move will open up a new export market for the Lincoln plant’s products.
Some of the MDX vehicles made at the plant will be shipped to China, said Tom Shoupe, head of Honda’s Alabama operations.
A small percentage of the plant’s vehicles, now Odyssey minivans, Pilot SUVs and Ridgeline pickups, are exported each year to markets including the Middle East, South America and Central America. Pilots are also shipped to Russia.
The MDX, now produced at a Honda plant in Canada, has been exported to China for several years in small numbers, so that will continue after the production switch. Last year, 485 MDX vehicles were shipped to China, Honda spokesman Ed Miller said.
The SUV is sold in the United States. The MDX move will give Honda more room in Canada to build the popular CR-V SUV. Acura is Honda’s luxury vehicle division, and the MDX will be the first Acura product built in Alabama.