Sony took just about everyone by surprise at the 2020 CES when it unveiled the Vision-S as a sleek electric sedan. The Vision-S 02 SUV followed at the beginning of this year at the same show in Las Vegas. At CES in January, the Sony Mobility division was announced to explore a potential entry into the electric car segment. A few weeks later, Automotive News reported about Sony's desire to find strategic partners.
Fast forward to March 4, Sony has found a partner in Honda. The two companies have agreed to deepen discussions in regard to forming an alliance to develop and sell EVs. To make it happen, a joint venture simply called "New Company" will be created to develop and commercialize zero-emission cars. The immediate objective is to create the new… New Company before the end of the year.
Gallery: Sony Vision-S 02 SUV Concept
If everything will go according to plan, the first EV is scheduled to go on sale as early as 2025. As expected, Honda will be in charge of making the car at one of its own factories and will utilize a Sony-developed platform. It's too soon to say whether the road-going model will be related in any way to the already revealed Vision-S sedan or SUV.
It's worth noting the two concepts weren't an all-Sony effort as the company collaborated with some of the biggest names out there: Magna Steyr, Bosch, ZF, Continental, Nvidia, and Qualcomm. Development of the electric sedan unveiled a couple of years ago never stopped, thus suggesting the company had a much bigger agenda than just a concept.
Gallery: Sony Vision-S concept
Both body styles came with all-wheel drive by installing an electric motor at the front and another at the rear with a combined 536 horsepower (400 kilowatts). The sedan could do 0 to 62 mph (100 km/h) in 4.8 seconds and top out at 149 mph (240 km/h). The SUV was slower since it weighed an extra 287 pounds (130 kilograms), at a porky 5,467 lbs (2,480 kg).
While the sedan was a four-seat affair, its high-riding counterpart could accommodate up to seven people. Details about the battery were never released, aside from being an "ultra-thin" pack housed underneath the floor to maximize cabin space. The platform itself has been engineered not just for sedans and SUVs, but also for minivans and other types of cars.
All things considered, it looks as though Sony will be beating Apple to the EV punch as Cupertino's on-again, off-again car is still at a rumor stage after all these years.