Honda embarked on its new EV strategy early this month at CES. The Japanese automaker showcased two electric concepts, which offered a glimpse into Honda's new design language and provided insight into the company's evolving engineering philosophy. But as it turns out, there’s even more happening behind the curtains as a production battery-powered sports car is also under development.
CEO Toshihiro Mibe revealed Honda's venture into researching sports cars for the EV era. Mibe disclosed that at the R&D center, work is already underway on a performance machine that will be a pivotal part of the 0 Series range of electric cars set to hit the market from 2026.
Gallery: 2024 Honda Saloon EV Concept
While details about the production version of Honda's first electric sports car are undisclosed, Mibe confirmed that the development progress is "steadily proceeding." The sports car is poised to serve as the flagship model for the 0 Series, embodying technical innovations geared towards maximizing interior space, reducing battery weight, and enhancing efficiency – all while emphasizing the “joy of driving” with a strong focus on driver engagement.
Aligning with the design philosophy of the 0 Series concept unveiled earlier at CES, the sports car will reportedly have a low-slung, cab-forward profile. The cockpit design will be minimalist, with a primary focus on eliminating distractions. The battery will be significantly slimmer than those found in Honda's current EVs, and propulsion will be facilitated by e-axle drive units, integrating motors, inverters, and gearboxes into a compact unit to optimize interior space.
In an interview with Autocar, Mibe also highlighted that a sporty EV from Honda will have a "completely different taste" from any performance car launched by the company before. This emphasizes the core aspect of the R&D program, focusing on creating a distinct character that ensures true engagement for drivers. Honda is also conducting a thorough analysis of the current electric sports car market, without explicitly naming competitors.