Honda Motor Company was founded by Soichiro Honda. It was a company founded by a man passionate for racing and sheer engineering excellence. In fact the very origin of the company lends it self to the inspiration of great racing success that motor bicycles engineered by the man achieved.
The bicycles were very rich in engineering excellence and innovations but cost only a handful. The precedence was set for the success of the company. Engineering excellence that cost little money marched the company forward into one of the most successful motor companies in the world.
In the automobile world it was one of the most successful companies to bring Variable Valve Timing and Lift Control mechanisms to mass production cars. These VTEC units were unparallel when it comes to the combination of durability (as oppose to forced induction), performance (120hp per liter) and fuel efficiency they offer. According to EVO car magazineHonda Integra Type R DC2 model is world’s best FWD car ever made.
Apart from VTEC there are other great contributions they have made when it comes to fuel efficiency, durability, chassis balance and cost effective production methods.
But ever since great Soichiro closed his eyes Honda has never been the same company.
They distanced themselves from their original values of “Engineering excellence that cost little money” and became the company of tree huggers and corporate profits. While there is nothing wrong with tree huggers and profits in their own right, when company began to shift its focus to them Honda lost their original color.
The departure from original colors was seen in Formula1 than anywhere else. They went from the most successful F1 engine maker in the late '80s and early '90s to the back markers of 2008. They became big spenders and engineering excellence eluded them.
On one fateful day in December 2008 even while still being one of the best financially positioned car makers in the world that boasts a so much better balance sheet, even revenue and future potential than companies like Renault-Nissan, GM, Chrysler, Ford, Peugeot, Hyundai, Mitsubishi, Mazda, Suzuki, and many more Honda announced that they quit racing at the pinnacle of motor sport. The founding father Soichiro Honda once famously said that “without racing there is not Honda.”
True to the spirits of founding values the Honda Motor Company ceases to exist from thereon. One suggests that the Honda badge be removed and replaced with a one that reads “Prudent Green.”