“Keeping Dreams on Track,” the 2014 American Honda Rose Parade entry, brought the idea of a train through the present and into the future with five floats coupled like railroad cars. At 274 feet, the float was the longest in Rose Parade history, yet it made the trip with one engine and one driver.
The company called the entry “a fantastic look into the future where all things are possible if we follow our dreams. Honda believes in the power of dreams, and their ability to empower, inspire, and overcome great challenges en route to changing the world.”
The train featured a Rose Parade favorite, ASIMO, driving a pretty hot-looking roadster. Going along with the theme of the 125th Rose Parade, “Dreams Come True,” Honda fulfilled the dreams of spectators who wish they could be in the parade: Camera along the parade route captured cheering fans and projected them on two giant video screens on the fourth car. Honda’s own dreams include the new Acura NSX, HondaJet, and ASIMO, “the world’s most advanced humanoid robot.”
Riders and outwalkers were Southern California high school students who had participated in one of the exchange programs under the TOMODACHI Initiative, a public-private partnership created after the Great East Japan Earthquake. TOMODACHI exposes young Japanese and American leaders to educational and cultural exchanges and entrepreneurship and leadership programs.
The float was designed by Dave Pittman and built by Phoenix Decorating Company. Music was written specifically for the float by Grammy Award-winning composer Daniel Ho. As a presenting sponsor of the parade, Honda did not compete in judging. For photos of each segment of the train, see the slideshow attached to this article.
Honda has been in the Rose Parade for 53 years and entered a float for 38 of those years. The company has been a presenting sponsor for four years, and for the fourth straight year, Honda’s float was propelled by a specially configured Honda hybrid, low-emission engine to help the float function more efficiently and reduce its carbon footprint.
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