No, it's not US-bound, but...
Here’s the first thing you need to know, if you don’t already, about the new Honda E Prototype: the upcoming production version is not bound for America. That was never the plan because Americans apparently have different design tastes than Europeans. We happen to really like the E Prototype but we’re not kidding ourselves in that Honda is probably right.
However, we were curious about its all-electric platform, which also underpinned 2017’s Sports EV concept. Was the platform homologated for America? The answer is yes. We spoke to Kohei Hitomi, the project lead for the E Prototype, at Geneva last week and he confirmed the good news.
"This new EV platform is homologated for North America. It does meet safety standards,” Hitomi said. But just because the upcoming production-spec E Prototype isn’t US-bound doesn’t mean Honda won’t use the platform here. "We have received a big reaction from the United States (for the E Prototype), but it was not designed for that market. There are other plans for the US.”
Hitomi also hinted that the brand’s future design language will bear some resemblance to the simplified lines of the E Prototype inside and out. Today’s Honda lineup, by contrast, consists of models with an overall edgier look with lots of flat surfaces.
But what we’re hoping to see make its way to America is a production version of the Sports EV. With its long hood and short rear deck, there’s a clear resemblance to one of our favorite Honda’s in recent years, the S2000. While Honda has remained firm there are no plans for an S2000 revival, it has not said the same regarding the Sports EV concept.
Furthermore, the Sports EV has not even been confirmed for production in any market. But once the E Prototype (obviously the name will change) reaches European showrooms, the automaker will continue to examine where else its platform can be useful. We clearly have our preference.