On Thursday, Sony and Honda announced the creation of a new joint venture, Sony Honda Mobility (SHM), tasked with bringing state-of-the-art electric cars with software to market.

The first car will be built by Honda at its North American plant and will begin deliveries in the US by spring 2026. SHM will start taking orders for the car in early 2025 and go on sale later that year. The company plans to focus on online sales, as opposed to the traditional dealership model. Deliveries to Japan will begin in the second half of 2026, and SHM is considering European deliveries but has yet to make a decision.

In accordance with Reuters, the first SHM car will likely be built at one of Honda’s Ohio plants. The automaker announced this week that it will upgrade its Ohio plants to produce electric vehicles, and said it will build a battery plant in Fayette County, Ohio with LG Energy Solution.

Sony Vision-S 02 concept

While Honda will primarily focus on developing and manufacturing cars for the joint venture, Sony will focus on developing an ecosystem around the cars, which will include an open community and various digital products, some of which will be offered on a subscription basis. These may include entertainment services and possibly some vehicle features, such as self-driving capabilities.

In their announcement on Thursday, Sony and Honda said the SHM vehicles will have a high level of self-driving capability, including for urban environments, and Sony will provide imaging and sensing technology. Vehicles must still be under driver control at all times, rating them at level 2 on SAE scale of self-driving abilitybut a Level 3 system, the first level at which the driver can pay attention to the road, will be developed, the companies said.

No further details have been confirmed on which cars will be produced by the joint venture, although we do know that Sony has been testing prototypes based on its Vision-S sedan concept first shown in 2020. This year, Sony also showed a the analogue of the crossover was named Vision-S 02and both cars are designed on a modular EV platform sourced from Magna Steyr, the same Austrian company that supplies the platform for Fisker Ocean. Magna will handle it produced by Acstarting in November.


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