Honda spending $124M on area wind tunnel facility

Published: Thursday, April 20, 2017 @ 11:03 AM

Scott King explains how the new component front end attaches to the new frame of the 2017 Honda CRV at the company’s East Liberty manufacturing plant. Honda will invest $124 million to build a new wind tunnel in East Liberty. Bill Lackey/Staff
Staff Writer
Scott King explains how the new component front end attaches to the new frame of the 2017 Honda CRV at the company’s East Liberty manufacturing plant. Honda will invest $124 million to build a new wind tunnel in East Liberty. Bill Lackey/Staff(Staff Writer)

Honda will invest $124 million to build a wind tunnel facility at the Transportation Research Center in East Liberty.

The groundbreaking for the project is expected to begin this summer. The wind tunnel will be able to produce wind speeds of 192 miles per hour and allow the automaker to develop more fuel-efficient vehicles, according to information from the company released today. 

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Honda is a major local employer, with about 1,400 workers from Clark and Champaign counties and about 13,000 Ohioans overall. 

“This new facility will further enhance our ability to efficiently create products of the highest quality for our customers,” said Frank Paluch, president of Honda R&D Americas Inc. in a statement announcing the investment. 

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“It will be integral to our aerodynamic and aeroacoustic R&D activity, which spans from advanced research and computer simulation, through scale-model and full vehicle development, to production vehicle performance assurance,” he said. “And all of this is being done right here in the U.S.”