Honda's new EV platform could underpin a U.S.-bound car
It won't be the E Prototype, though.
Honda has made it crystal clear that it won't sell the production version of the E Prototype in the United States. The car is too small for the American market, according to its top executives. Its platform might come here under a different car, however.
"This new EV platform is homologated for North America. It does meet safety standards," said Kohei Hitomi, the E Prototype's project leader, in an interview with website CarBuzz. He again reminded the publication that the final version of the E Prototype (pictured) won't come to America. "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 U.S.," he added without going into additional details.
The platform was developed to underpin relatively small cars; Honda can't build a Passport or an Odyssey on it. An America-bound model underpinned by the new architecture would have to compete in the sub-compact segment. We know the E Prototype's technology will trickle down to an entire family of models, and one of them could be a production version of the Sports EV concept unveiled during the 2017 Tokyo auto show. Could this be the model Hitomi alluded to?
Another, more likely option is that the platform will underpin a crossover in the vein of the HR-V. Entering this segment would make sense from a profitability and scalability point of view. Nothing is official yet, however. We expect to learn more about what Honda's electric car offensive will bring when the final E Prototype -- a name that won't be retained -- makes its debut at the end of 2019.
Photo by Ronan Glon.