The pure electric Honda Urban EV Concept has made its global debut at the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show.
The concept car is built on a completely new platform, and sets the direction for the technology and design that will appear on a future battery electric Honda production model – in Europe in 2019, ie. within two years. Honda has also confirmed that electrified technology will now feature in every new car model launched in Europe.
The simple, clean, and somewhat retro styling of the Urban EV Concept appears to be a fairly radical, yet welcome, departure from Honda’s recent design language, which, in the case of the most recent Civic for example, has been somewhat cluttered. However with the addition of this model, we’re still left with the prospect of Honda having a variety of different design styles within its range.
Honda is relatively late to the electric car party so let’s hope that the Urban EV Concept delivers a driving experience that’s as interesting as its sporty-looking design.
Inside, a large ‘floating’ dashboard console houses the steering wheel column, a set of simple control buttons, and a panoramic display screen. The Urban EV Concept can accommodate four occupants, across two bench seats. Unlike most cars, the concept only has two doors.
New methods for managing energy transfers between the grid, homes and electric vehicles could provide revenue opportunities for EV owners in the future. Honda’s Power Manager Concept, revealed alongside the Urban EV Concept in Frankfurt, is a smart system that can store energy more efficiently, releasing electricity generated by renewable sources back into the home or selling it back to the grid.
Power Manager works by aggregating and distributing energy to and from the grid, solar panel-equipped homes or workplaces, and electric vehicles.
Electricity is received into the system from the grid or is generated by the solar panels and can be used to power and heat the building as well as to charge the EV. While the EV is plugged in, the energy can be stored and used at home or sold back to the grid, potentially generating value for EV owners.
The Power Manager system can help to stabilise the grid at times of either short or surplus supply, as well as representing a revenue opportunity for EV owners.
Honda’s ‘Electric Vision’ strategy, launched at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show, includes the development of a dedicated electric vehicle platform, featuring fully-electric powertrain technology. Key parts of the powertrain development will include a high-density, lightweight battery pack, integrated heat management and the evolution of energy transfer functions – both to and from the vehicle.