Why Honda's EV Strategy Is So Slow
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In the background of the slow movement toward electrification of both motorcycles and automobiles, there is the issue of employment.
People who have been involved in the development and production of engines will lose their jobs. In addition, engine suppliers and other stakeholders will not be able to do business.
Even if you want to become an electrician, mechanical engineering and electrical engineering are completely different.
If a craftsman who has been developing engines for 30 years is asked to start designing motors tomorrow, he will be at a loss.
An old man who has been repairing bicycles for 30 years would have a hard time getting motivated to start repairing smart phones.
There is also the issue of motivation.
I joined Honda because I wanted to work on engines, but now I have to work on motors and batteries.
It's not so bad if you're in a technical position, but there is a possibility that you will be sent to accounting or general affairs.
One or two people may be able to control their frustration. But if this happens to a huge number of employees, it will have a serious impact on the motivation and morale of the workplace.
A highly skilled engine builder is transferred to the electrical design department and works under a junior employee who is tens of years younger than him. This is a very difficult situation. It is also difficult in terms of human relations.
Electrification also means that parts other than the engine will be affected.
Transmissions will become very simple or even unnecessary.
There will be no need for gasoline tanks, engine oil, or other grease.
The developers of these parts will also have to change their jobs.
Considering all of this, it is not easy to steer the ship toward electrification.
I don't think I need to explain how the Japanese electric manufacturers that dominated the world 30 years ago are slipping now.
However, if they stick to the status quo and fail to move forward with electrification, they will face mass layoffs and bankruptcy. Sharp has become a foreign manufacturer, and Toshiba has sold itself to various companies.
How to strike a balance between reform and maintaining the status quo? Difficult business decisions are being made.