Honda has confirmed it will export a trio of new SUVs to the European market from China as it reduces its reliance on Japanese production, but it won’t do the same in Australia.

“Honda Australia currently source vehicles from Honda factories in Japan and Thailand, and has no plans to source vehicles from Honda’s factory in China,” said a spokesperson for Honda Australia.

As confirmed by Automotive News Europe, new ZR-V and CR-V will be built by Honda’s Chinese joint ventures with GAC and Dongfeng and exported to Europe, with the European CR-V line-up also including a plug-in hybrid.

The previous-generation CR-V had gained a plug-in hybrid late in its lifecycle, but this was built and sold only in China.

The final member of the Chinese trio is the small e:Ny1 electric SUV, which closely resembles the combustion-powered HR-V but rides what Honda calls the e:N Architecture F for electric vehicles.

Honda Australia has yet to confirm where Australian-market CR-Vs will come from. The outgoing generation is sourced from Thailand, which continues as one of the production sources for the new model along with the US, Canada and China.

The local arm had already effectively ruled out the e:Ny1 SUV for Australia, confirming it has no plans to sell any electric vehicles before 2028.

Honda Europe’s announcement follows a recent announcement from Honda that it will export its Chinese-built Odyssey to Japan, following the end of production of that model in Japan.

It’s understood to be the first time Honda has exported a vehicle from China to Japan, but with Honda Australia ruling out Chinese sourcing, any hopes of a return to the people mover segment appear lost.

In addition to ruling out Chinese models, Honda Australia has largely moved away from sourcing vehicles from Thailand. The latest Civic and HR-V now come from Japan instead, though the current Accord and CR-V still come from the Kingdom.

Honda isn’t alone in building cars in China for export to markets like Europe.

The upcoming Cupra Tavascan will be shipped to markets like Australia and Europe from China, the Chinese-built BMW iX3 is sold both here and in Europe, and Polestar and Volvo widely export their Chinese-built models around the world.

William Stopford

William Stopford is an automotive journalist based in Brisbane, Australia. William is a Business/Journalism graduate from the Queensland University of Technology who loves to travel, briefly lived in the US, and has a particular interest in the American car industry.

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