Honda says it isn’t looking to strike up partnerships that will involve mergers with other automakers, despite the growing challenges brought about by fast moving changes in the automotive landscape. Honda president and CEO Takahiro Hachigo said that the company has no intention of going into any equity or shareholding deals with other automakers.

It will however remain open to strategic collaborations involving the development of technologies relevant to its 2030 Vision aim. “We would be willing to enter into partnership with other carmakers if we can build a win-win relationship with regards to technology and products,” he told journalists in Tokyo last month, citing its joint venture with General Motors on the development of hydrogen fuel cell power systems as an example.

“When it comes to fuel cell vehicles, we are working with GM, and we have co-invested in a company for the development of the FCV stack, and we would be willing to enter into such collaborations,” Hachigo said. Honda and GM are set to jointly produce fuel cell stacks at the latter’s Brownstown, Michigan plant in the US from 2020. Both companies are making an equal investment totalling US$85 million (RM360 million) towards the project.

On the diesel front, Hachigo said that although the growing focus will be on electrification, the move away from diesel will be a gradual one, and its stand on oil burners in certain markets will remain largely unchanged, at least in the near future.

“In Europe, our number one diesel market, we will be giving priority to electrification, but that doesn’t mean that we will eliminate our diesel model lineup straight away. There is still demand in Europe – and markets such as India – so we will continue with diesels in line with the needs of our customers, and phase out its deployment gradually,” he said.

Two years ago, the automaker had said it would look at limiting its advances with diesel powertrains, and make the switch towards propagating – and developing – other technologies for its powertrains.