The carmaker has just released the first exterior shots of the study that’s called e Prototype and the good news is it sticks pretty close to the Urban EV Concept from 2017. However, it’s not quite as dramatic looking as said study. Honda says the e Prototype evolves from the Urban EV, and a closer look reveals some key differences.
For example, it features rear doors with “hidden” handles and smaller, front-hinged doors at the front. As a result, the overall proportions of the car lean towards a more practical approach rather than a sporty one. Another big change concerns the rear end, where the study’s squared taillights have given way to round units that echo the design of the headlights.
While looking all cute and friendly, the Honda e Prototype is tech-savvy at the same time. It features “pop out” door handles and compact cameras replacing the traditional side mirrors — both features are unique for a vehicle in this segment.
If you were wondering what’s that black thing on the bonnet, it’s the charging port. Honda has chosen to place it in that position so that it could be easily accessible from either side of the car. The port comes with LED lighting visible through the glass cover to welcome the driver and inform of the battery charging status.
Speaking of black panels, the concave ones between the front and rear lights are clear hints to the Urban EV concept. Unfortunately, they do not display information as on said study and only serve a styling purpose.
More than 200 km (124 miles) of range and a “powerful” electric motor driving the rear wheels
The neo-retro vibe continues inside the cabin which adopts a minimalist approach made possible by the customizable dual screen horizontal display that integrates most of the car’s functions. The screens for the Camera Mirror System are integrated at either end of the dashboard, and even the central rear view mirror has been replaced by a camera.
Honda says the interior is spacious thanks in part to a walk-through flat floor in the front and rear of the cabin. We’re told the cabin also has “a comfortable lounge-like feel,” using melange-style sofa fabric and other tactile materials often found in contemporary homes.
Honda didn’t release the car’s dimensions but says e Prototype’s “relatively long wheelbase, wide track, and short overhangs facilitate exceptional urban maneuverability and dynamic driving characteristics.”
You’ll be glad to know that under the cute bodywork sits an EV-specific platform with a rear-wheel-drive layout. It features “a powerful electric motor driven through rear wheels for next-generation small-car performance” and a “fun and emotive experience.”
No exact specs were released other than the driving range of over 200 km (124 miles) and a fast charge functionality of 80 percent battery charge in 30 minutes. Honda also says the bespoke EV platform delivers “a blend of efficiency, performance, and usability that is perfect for urban environments.”
The Honda e Prototype will enter production later this year.