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Retro style meets tomorrow's tech in Honda's Urban EV concept

Slated for 2019 production, Honda's new concept fuses '80s hatchback style with the electric drive and connected tech of the future.

Antuan Goodwin
Antuan Goodwin gained his automotive knowledge the old fashioned way, by turning wrenches in a driveway and picking up speeding tickets. From drivetrain tech and electrification to car audio installs and cabin tech, if it's on wheels, Antuan is knowledgeable.
Antuan Goodwin
Honda Urban EV concept
1 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/Roadshow

Honda's subcompact Urban EV concept debuted this week at the 2017 Frankfurt auto show.

Honda Urban EV concept
2 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/Roadshow

Not much is known about the electrified hatchback's power train other than, well, it's fully electric and battery-powered.

Honda Urban EV concept
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This early in the game, Honda's mostly exploring the design. However, the automaker has stated that it will be bringing a production car based on the Urban EV to the European market sometime in 2019.

4 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/Roadshow

The concept starts with a silhouette and proportions of a hot hatch from the 1970s or 80s, but with 21st-century materials and construction.

Honda Urban EV concept
5 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/Roadshow

The aesthetic reminds me strongly of the Mk. 1 Volkswagen Rabbit with its wide grille and integrated round headlamps, but there's also a lot of first-generation Honda Civic in there as well.

Honda Urban EV concept
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Inside, the concept continues the retro-future theme with old-school bench seats up front and back and a very high-tech wraparound display that stretches the entire length of the dashboard.

Honda Urban EV concept
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The concept integrates LED displays in the front grille and rear taillight assembly that can be used to display messages, emoticons and more.

Honda Urban EV concept
8 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/Roadshow

The rather dully, but also accurately, named Urban EV concept is a bit small for the US market, which is probably why Honda has no stated plans to send it here.

Honda Urban EV concept
9 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/Roadshow

However, we expect to learn more about what will be Honda's first fully electric car for the European market over the next year. Hopefully, it'll still look this cool when it gets there.

Honda Urban EV concept
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Honda Urban EV concept
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Honda Urban EV concept
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Honda Urban EV concept
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Honda Urban EV concept
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Honda Urban EV concept
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Honda Urban EV concept
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Honda Urban EV concept
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Honda Urban EV concept
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