Sony, Honda join forces to plan new electric vehicle company

The as-yet-unnamed company is targeting 2025 for its first sales.
The as-yet-unnamed company is targeting 2025 for its first sales. Photo credit: Getty Images

Sony and Honda have signed a memorandum of understanding to create a new joint company to manufacture electric vehicles (EVs), the companies have announced.

The company, which is yet to be named, is expected to be established this year after negotiations for binding agreements are finalised.

The plan is then to release its first EV model to the market in 2025.

The companies say the alliance will bring together Honda's experience in making new vehicles with Sony's expertise in imaging, sensing, network and entertainment technologies.

The goal is to create "a new generation of mobility and services that are closely aligned with users and the environment, and continue to evolve going forward".

The announcement said the new company wouldn't own or operate manufacturing facilities, so Honda would make the first EV model at its plant. However the new company will plan, design, develop and sell the EVs.

Toshihirio Mibe, CEO of Honda, said the new company would aim to stand at "the forefront of innovation, evolution, and expansion of mobility around the world".

It would achieve that goal by being broad and ambitious in the way it created value, exceeding the expectations and imaginations of customers, he said.

"Although Sony and Honda are companies that share many historical and cultural similarities, our areas of technological expertise are very different.

"Therefore, I believe this alliance which brings together the strengths of our two companies offers great possibilities for the future of mobility."

Sony CEO Kenichiro Yoshida said his company's purpose was to "fill the world with emotion through the power of creativity and technology".

"Through ths alliance with Honda, which has accumulated extensive global experience and achievements in the automobile industry over many years and continues to make revolutionary advancements in this field, we intend to build on our vision to ‘make the mobility space an emotional one," he said.

That includes contributions to "the evolution of mobility centred around safety, entertainment and adaptability".

Sony had previously announced it was ready to get into the motoring business in 2020 when it revealed its Vision-S concept car at CES 2020.

That was followed up earlier this year with the updated Vision-S 02 concept car at CES 2022.