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Why Honda is spending on shrinking segment

On its face, the announcement was a head-scratcher.

Honda, an automaker known for its conservative approach to expanding production globally, revealed in September that it was adding 300 new jobs in Ohio and pumping $267 million into production of the 2018 Accord midsize sedan.

That’s a bold move considering the headwinds the 10th-generation Accord — and all midsize sedans of its ilk — are facing.

For the first nine months of 2017, the segment has contracted 15 percent vs. the same period a year earlier, to 1.4 million vehicles. Every model in the category has seen a sales decline in 2017, most by double digits. In 2016, segment sales dropped 12 percent overall.

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