Honda has produced its 20-millionth automobile in North America. Of that number, nearly 25 per cent were manufactured in Canada by the Honda of Canada Mfg. assembly plants in Alliston. Honda began local North American auto production in Marysville, Ohio, in 1982, and in Alliston in 1986. "The production of 20 million cars and light trucks in North America was achieved through the ultimate in teamwork by our suppliers, business partners and dealers working together with Honda associates to create joy for our customers," said Tsuneo Tanai, president and CEO of Honda of America Mfg. Inc. and head of Honda’s production operations in North America. In a letter thanking the more than 34,000 associates working in Honda manufacturing, sales, marketing and R&D operations in North America, Tanai said, "Most importantly, we owe our deepest appreciation to our customers, as none of our accomplishments would be possible without the loyalty they have shown to their Honda and Acura products." Honda has two Canadian vehicle assembly plants in Alliston that produce approximately 390,000 vehicles annually. In the U.S., Honda has vehicle assembly plants in Alabama and Indiana, and two assembly plants in Ohio. There also is a vehicle assembly plant in Jalisco, El Salto, Mexico. In addition to the production of 20-million passenger cars and light trucks, Honda’s cumulative North American production of automobile engines exceeds 18.4 million units, and its automatic transmission production exceeds 13 million units. From the start-up of automobile exports in 1987 through 2008, Honda has exported 922,668 vehicles made in North America to global markets. Honda has invested more than (U.S.) $10.6 billion in its North America operations, including 16 major manufacturing facilities employing more than 27,000 associates, to produce Honda and Acura passenger cars and light trucks, motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, personal watercraft, lawn mowers, general-purpose engines, and other power equipment products. The Honda of Canada Mfg. facility in Alliston, which opened in 1986, represents an investment in Canada of $2.6 billion. With 4,600 workers, Honda builds the Honda Civic sedan and coupe, and the Acura CSX sedan and MDX luxury utility vehicle at its two plants in Alliston and produces fuel-efficient four-cylinder engines at its new engine plant adjacent to its Canadian manufacturing facilities. Nearly half of all Honda and Acura vehicles sold in Canada in 2008 were made in Canada – a higher percentage than any other Canadian vehicle manufacturer.