by Lem Bingley
“This is not some vision of the distant future a production version of this car or truck will be right here in Europe in 2019,” stated Honda president and CEO Takahiro Hachigo at the Frankfurt motor show this week.
The car or truck he was speaking about, the cute-as-a-button Honda Urban EV Idea, was broadly acknowledged as the star of the German show. Not a undesirable outcome, provided that the car or truck was parked on the dwelling turf of BMW, Mercedes, and the numerous Volkswagen Group brands.
The Urban EV appears as sharp and modern day as an iPhone, but also resembles the original 1972 Honda Civic, providing it a dash of the retro appeal enjoyed by the modern day Mini and Fiat 500.
Bold lamps at the nose and tail of the car or truck give the car or truck an attractive, Manga-like cartoon face at each ends. A black line at the base of each bumpers even supplies the hint of a wide-mouthed grin.
Up close the Urban EV Idea appears smooth and compact – it is 100mm shorter than a Jazz supermini, according to Honda.
Facts of the production car’s functionality and battery size stay to be observed. No doubt some of concept’s cuteness will be lost in translation – at the pretty least, quantity plates will give the car’s cartoon face a moustache. Rear-hinged doors and cameras as an alternative of mirrors will no doubt also get the chop.
But it will be terrific to see Honda – an early pioneer of petrol-electric hybrids – bring an attractive new battery-electric car or truck to industry. It is about time.