Honda is on a mission to launch 30 electric vehicles globally by 2030, and some of them will form part of a global family of EVs called the 0 (zero) series, which Honda launched on Tuesday at 2024 CES by unveiling a pair of concepts.
The concepts include a sporty, wedged-shaped car called the Saloon and a taller, van-like design called the Space-Hub. Both concepts are based on a next-generation EV platform with a thin battery design to help boost interior space while keeping the height of the vehicle low—part of a new “man-maximum/machine-minimum” design approach.
Honda confirmed a production version of the Saloon concept will arrive in 2026, including in North America.
Honda has striven to make the concepts’ designs distinct from anything in its current lineup, and this has extended to a revised Honda H badge that the automaker said will appear on its future EVs.
Honda’s revised H logo for electric vehicles
Inside, the concepts feature sustainable materials throughout, and at least in the case of the Saloon a digital dash and a yoke-style steering wheel connected with steer-by-wire technology. Honda said the concepts also feature a user interface with easy-to-use operation. Without going into detail, the automaker said it is developing its own operating system for the 0 series, and it will integrate artificial intelligence to enable the vehicle to learn a user’s preferences and routines over time and help with relevant suggestions.
Automated driver-assist technology will also be a central facet of the 0 series. Honda said the vehicles will be able to offer some hands-off functions for use on both highways and suburban streets.
Honda didn’t have much to say about its EV technology destined for the 0 series but said the vehicles will offer high-density batteries for ample range, and at least some vehicles will have DC fast charging capability that will enable a 15-80% charge in 15 minutes or less. In terms of battery degradation, Honda said it aims for its EVs to still have at least 90% of their original driving range after a decade of use.
Honda 0 Space-Hub concept
Having been hesitant about EVs in the past, Honda is now poised to make a significant entry into the segment. This year, the automaker is set to introduce the Prologue midsize SUV, developed on General Motors’ Ultium platform and battery technology. Additionally, GM will be responsible for the manufacturing process. Acura is following a similar path, preparing to launch its Ultium-based ZDX midsize SUV in 2024 as well.
Honda was also working on a line of affordable EVs based on an additional platform co-developed with GM, though the plan was nixed last fall. The first model on the jointly developed platform was due in 2027, and Honda hasn’t said whether it still is developing affordable EVs.
Separately, Honda is working with Sony on the new EV brand Afeela. The first Afeela will be a sleek sedan that will go into production around 2025 at a North American plant, likely one of Honda’s existing plants in Ohio. A prototype for the Afeela sedan was first shown at the 2023 CES, and at this year’s show Honda and Sony presented an updated version with a more evolved design.