Cute Four-Door Urban EV Has 120-Mile Range
When I saw the two-door Honda Urban EV Concept at last year’s Frankfurt auto show, I thought it was more adorable than a puppy cuddled up on a rug in front of a fireplace. Now, five month’s later, Honda has taken the wraps off the Honda e Prototype at the Geneva Motor Show.
What you see is about 95 percent of what the full production car will look like when deliveries are made in early 2020.
The Honda e Prototype is a little bit larger than the Urban EV Concept and the two large suicide doors are gone, replaced with four conventional doors and a rear hatch, but it’s still a li’l cutie. Inspired by the original Honda Civic, it has a modern-retro look, with minimal detailing and a sporty stance. Its round headlights with LED technology sit within a piano-black surround, an effect that is repeated at the rear of the car.
Honda has put the charging port in the middle of the hood, so that it’s easily reached regardless of the side of the charger you park. However,,the side mirror cameras and flush, pop-out door handles are unlikely to make it through to the production car.
The bench seat in the Urban concept has been replaced with conventional seats and moved to the second row. As such, there is only seating for four people inside. The dash is dominated by a bank of digital screens; two 12.3-inch displays sit side by side and provide access to a suite of in-car apps and media functions. Seamless smartphone connectivity, voice-operated systems and all manner of information about the driver’s journey and driving style are available. A smaller digital readout replaces conventional instruments.
Buttons offering shortcuts to popular features are placed on the two-spoke steering wheel. There’s no gearlever. Instead, buttons for Drive, Reverse and Park are conveniently placed by the driver’s knee.
Little Drivetrain Information
As for the electric drivetrain, Honda is only giving the basics for now. A single electric motor drives the rear wheels, and driving range is expected to come in at around 120 miles based on the European drive cycle. Using the quoted range as a guide, it indicates a battery capacity of around 30 kilowatt-hours.
Pricing has not been revealed, but expect it to be pricey at around $30,000. In addition to Europe, Honda also intends to do a limited production run for Japan, but as of right now, the company doesn’t have plans to bring its city-oriented EV to the US market.
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