Hondacura must be getting a LOT of denero out of this deal (forgive me if this has already been posted here):
One thing weird is it says the 3.5 is a DOHC engine. I'm pretty sure the MDX is a SOHCBy Bill Visnic with Katharine Zachary
Ward's Auto World, Aug 1, 2002
Saturn Corp. is the only General Motors Corp. unit that will use engines and transmissions supplied by Honda Motor Co. Ltd., Ward's learns.
The Saturn Vue will be the sole GM product to use the ultra-low emissions-vehicle-certified 3.5L DOHC V-6, beginning with ‘04 models. Volumes call for 50,000 units annually for the 5-year life of the contract.
Vue's current GM-made 3L DOHC V-6 will be replaced with the Honda engine and a Honda 5-speed automatic transmission. The Vue will retain its GM-made 2.2L DOHC I-4 as its base engine.
The engines are built at Honda's Anna, OH, facility, which supplies V-6s for Honda and Acura vehicles. It is unclear whether power and torque ratings will differ for Saturn, but the V-6 will be “specifically engineered” for Saturn, says Jill Lajdziak, Saturn vice president-sales, service and marketing.
The Saturn decision ends speculation that began in December 1999, when GM and Honda first announced a technology and component-sharing agreement whereby Honda would supply V-6s and transmissions to GM.
A Honda source first told Ward's last fall that the V-6 would power the Vue. At that time, the plan was to supply GM with 75,000 units, down from the 90,000 units originally envisioned when the sharing deal was announced.
A Saturn source says the Vue program will take 50,000 units annually, raising the possibility of Saturn later using the Honda V-6 for the L-Series lineup, as it shares the GM-made 3L V-6 that the Vue is drops in 2004.
But a Saturn official says no powertrain changes are planned for the '04 L-Series. And L-Series could replace its 3L — imported from Ellesmere Port, U.K., — with GM's upcoming “High-Value” OHV V-6.
The decision on where at GM to use the Honda engine also appears to have been delayed at least once. Word is there was raucous debate in GM boardrooms about the matter. And Honda's desire to be an engine supplier is not as relevant today as it was during 1999's merger mania.