Honda gave us what's likely a thinly disguised look at its first electric vehicle for China ahead of the 2020 Beijing Motor Show this past Saturday. Called the SUV E Concept, the vehicle directly points to a future mass-production model specifically for China, according to Honda. It's a handsome thing and appears to pull from Honda's current production cars.
The headlight and overall fascia look like a direct evolution from the current Honda Accord, Civic and even the Clarity with thin, angled headlights and angled face. It's easy to see where a traditional grille would sit, if this wasn't a battery-powered concept car. We don't have any other information on the SUV E Concept's electric powertrain, so we'll need to wait and see what the automaker plans to share in the future.
The company says this future model will underscore that electric cars remain fun to drive, and that we should expect the latest technology from Honda. The SUV E Concept packs a next-generation Honda Sensing suite of active safety gear and driver-assist functions, though the automaker didn't detail what exactly those are. Even if the SUV E Concept doesn't directly influence future Honda EVs for the US, a next-gen Sensing system will almost certainly come to America. For now, all Honda said is the tech boasts improved recognition, predication and decision-making performance.
Also onboard is Honda's next-gen Connect infotainment system, which includes an artificial intelligence assistant and over-the-air update capability. Honda's current infotainment system is pretty darn old, so we can't wait to see what upcoming cars pack. If I had to take a guess, the next Sensing and Connect systems may debut with the next-generation Honda Civic, due to be revealed next year. The Accord is also in for a refresh later this year, so perhaps we'll see updated tech come there, too.
In the grander scheme, Honda announced a wide-ranging North American alliance with General Motors at the start of this month. The two automakers plan to work together on electric vehicles quite closely. It could be that any future Honda EVs for North America share a vast quantity of running gear with GM.