This will pave the way for future Honda EVs.
The Shanghai Auto Show opens its doors this week. So far, we've seen a long-wheelbase Audi A7, a new crossover from Ford, the Electrified Genesis G80 and the drop-dead gorgeous A6 e-tron Concept. Electrification is certainly the main theme this year, and Honda isn't being left behind.
The Japanese automaker today revealed its SUV e:prototype, a new electric crossover that will spearhead a slew of electric vehicles from the marque. And don't worry about the name - this will be more than just a pretty concept and will reach production.
Honda is planning to release ten EVs in China over the next five years, and the production version of the SUV e:prototype is scheduled to go on sale in spring of next year as the first Honda-brand EV in the country. This will help Honda achieve its goal of carbon neutrality by 2050, but Honda aims to make the electric SUV fun to drive with the "joy of driving" intended to be its chief characteristic.
Getting this right will be very important for staple cars like the Civic when they eventually get electrified too. Along with futuristic design, the prototype SUV model features the third generation of the Honda CONNECT system with smartphone connectivity, over-the-air updates, and "a highly sophisticated voice-recognition interface."
Honda will also be revealing its new Breeze PHEV, a plug-in hybrid based on Honda's dual-motor hybrid system that Honda says will offer an "EV-like feel" and a torquey drive "in virtually all areas of everyday driving while eliminating customers' range anxiety during a long drive."
This vehicle is scheduled to go on sale in China in the second half of this year as the first plug-in hybrid model introduced by GAC Honda. As for whether either model will be sold elsewhere in the world, we have yet to discover. But you can bet that the SUV e:prototype will transfer tech to numerous future Honda EVs.