The Beijing auto show has just kicked off and Honda unveiled a new electric SUV concept that hints at an upcoming production car
Coupe crossovers, we just can’t move on from this subject – yesterday we got the news of the 2021 Audi Q5 Sportback, joining the growing segment of coupe SUVs that now also includes Renault and its new Arkana. Of course all of them fail on the coupe front, on account of having four doors and all.
Honda is doing it right, unveiling a show car at the Auto China 2020 expo in Beijing this week that stays true to the simple concept of putting two doors on a coupe. You’d think it’s easy to grasp, but many have failed.
Currently one of our favourite new car designs at Motormouth is Yuki Terai’s Honda E, the zero-emissions supermini sold in Europe and Japan from around $35,000. The rear-mounted electric motor comes in either 134 or 152 horsepower versions, which gives you zero to 100km/h in a littler over eight seconds and a range of more than 200km. Not stellar figures at all, but the styling and the lounge-like interior are the car’s main selling points.
However the Honda E doesn’t figure on the global market and Honda needs a bigger vehicle to make inroads in China and the US. Today in Beijing Honda seems to have introduced just such a car, the new Honda SUV e:concept as they’ve labelled it, indicating the styling direction of an upcoming mass-production model. When this coupe-SUV is launched (with four doors…) it’ll be Honda’s first EV in China.
Honda says the future model is being developed to offer value so don’t expect an $80,000 Audi e-tron rival. The Japanese also promise a suite of driving assistance features, all next-generation systems with improved recognition, predication and control. Naturally there is talk of the latest infotainment and connectivity options as well.
Other than that Honda isn’t really giving anything else away, least of all what’s under the skin of this electric SUV concept. The two-door design is certainly fetching, with a classic cab-back profile and huge wheel arches providing the sensation of less mass. It also allows the beltline to drop, visually, and make the whole SUV look longer and lower, which it is, particularly in the bonnet area. Overall we reckon this concept is a neat design, and the hockey-stick C-pillar seems to be a signature cue now as it ties in nicely with an identical look on the little Honda E.
Everything else remains to be seen, since Honda hasn’t announced its intentions for this electric crossover beyond China either, but we hope the Japanese manufacturer is thinking globally with this one.