Concept Previews Sleek Electric SUV
There are plenty of electric SUVs hitting the market right now, with more to come later this year. So far, on the EV front, we haven’t seen much of Honda – SUV-shaped or whatever – so far. The automaker is launching a stylish electric SUV concept at the Beijing Motor Show, the e: Concept SUV, shortly after shutting down the only electric vehicle sold in the United States, the Clarity.
Without the badge on the nose of the show vehicle, we would have no idea that this is a Honda. The concept includes a long square hood, exaggerated wheels, and extremely thin headlights and taillights, cues we haven’t settled on this premium shape on other vehicles of the brand. And that doesn’t seem to take much, if at all, inspiration from the Honda e, the cute new retro-futuristic electric hatch for global markets.
It’s hard to imagine that some of the design details of the Honda SUV e concept point to a production vehicle. The SUV features next-generation Honda Connect technology with AI assistant interface and wireless updates. There is also a new generation of Honda Sensing driver assistance technology. By utilizing a wider front camera angle and a new 360-degree radar, the technology provides improved peripheral vision and can help in more complex and diverse driving scenarios. Honda will begin demonstration testing of this new technology by the end of the year in China. Perfect, because Honda says the concept presents its vision for a future production electric vehicle to be introduced in China – Honda’s first electric vehicle for this market. It is not known if such a vehicle would eventually make it to the United States, although that seems like a good possibility given our market’s thirst for SUVs and Honda’s low EV play here.
On our shores, Honda left a shallow EV mark with the all-electric version of the Clarity, which, as we mentioned earlier, recently got the ax, leaving us no pure-electric Honda in the United States. We weren’t sad to see it go, however, given that it delivered a very uncompetitive range of just 89 miles. Other affordable sub-Tesla electric vehicles could go over 100 miles per charge, including the Nissan Leaf and the Volkswagen E Golf.
Fortunately, Honda left the door wide open for future electric vehicles, saying at the time, “We will be introducing some very attractive new all-electric vehicles to the US market in the years to come. Hopefully one of the new offerings will be something like this concept SUV.