A five passenger fully electric crossover SUV focused on the American market
A new design language Honda calls Neo Rugged
Underpinnings from GM, bodywork and interior bits from Honda
Honda’s first EV for the American market, the 2024 Prologue, is an important car for the brand. As the name suggests, it’s the introductory act of a massive play based entirely around electric cars in the Americas. It’s also part of an ongoing effort at Honda to adapt to what the company has called a “once-in-one-hundred-years period of great transformation” in the automotive industry.
Now, after months of teasers and little morsels of information coming from Honda itself, we finally have our first real look at the Prologue. It’s sporting a new design language that Honda calls Neo Rugged, and we definitely see what the automaker means. The design looks like something ASIMO would drive, even if we aren’t totally sold on the idea that its cutesy looks can be branded as “rugged.” It shows typical Honda restraint, and we’ll leave you to decide whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing.
There are plenty of fresh details to pore over on the Prologue’s bodywork, though. The word “Honda” is spelled out in a new font and plastered on the Prologue’s rear tailgate. There is also plenty of inspiration from the Honda e, a Fiat 500-sized EV with cute proportions that Honda sells overseas. The rounded-off edges and lower profile are a marked departure from Honda’s internal combustion-engine cars that all feature more squared-off lines and angry maws. The design is still boxy, just much friendlier.
Inside, the Prologue looks like an evolution of what we’ve seen from other Hondas. There is your typical infotainment screen that rises above the dashboard, but no word from Honda yet on what software will power it, how big it is, or what kind of features it will have. We’ll learn about those closer to launch. In front of the driver is a fully digital instrument cluster with graphics that look like a big step up from what we’ve seen in the current Civic and CR-V. Again, no details on the display yet, so we’ll have to wait for final specs to know how big it is and the full extent of its functionality.
What we do know is how big the Prologue will be. Honda says it will be about the same size as the current Passport. The Prologue will be 192 inches long and have a wheelbase of 121.8 inches. For a little context, that’s significantly larger than the Hyundai Ioniq 5, which is 182.5 inches long and has a wheelbase of 118.1 inches. Hopefully this nets more legroom for rear occupants and more internal volume for swallowing the requisite amount of cargo.
As for the Prologue’s EV range, well, the preliminary specs on the Blazer EV (the Prologue’s current platform-mate) reveal some information about that. The base front-wheel-drive Blazer EV will get up to 247 miles of range, while a larger battery pack will bump that number to somewhere between 290 and 320 miles of range. We’d be surprised if Honda didn’t offer at least one version of the Prologue with 300 miles of total range, and we expect at least one variant to surpass this figure by the time it goes on sale.
Honda is getting ready to seriously ramp up its EV game, and the current CR-V is a big part of that plan. Honda sees buyers of the new CR-V as potential early adopters of the Prologue, and as a result, it is offering special two-year leases on the CR-V in certain states. The idea is that, hopefully, customers who opt for this shortened lease will come in when their lease is up and buy a Prologue.
Honda says the Prologue will go on sale sometime in 2024, while 2026 sees the introduction of an all-new platform developed by Honda. Remember, the Prologue is based on the Ultium platform that’s been built by General Motors, and by 2026 Honda will have its own architecture to work with. By 2027, the automaker plans to roll out more affordable EVs on this platform. As for the Prologue’s price, Honda says it will closely match the current Passport in that regard as well. The Passport starts at just under $40,000, and we expect the Prologue to be priced right around there as well to compete with the likes of the Hyundai Ioniq 5 and the Ford Mustang Mach-E.
Are you waiting for a Prologue, or is 2024 just too much of a wait to go in on an EV?
Source: Edmunds.com Car News Read More