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Why the cute Honda E Electric hatch makes no sense to America



We can't help it – one look at Honda E's retro-modern headlights and some MotorTrend reporters fell in love with the electric car when it switched from a concept two years ago to a prototype earlier this year and now, a production car. At the car show in Frankfurt in 2019 we got a closer look at the production-ready Honda E, which will be sold next summer in Europe. Honda has not yet announced plans to sell the sweet electric four-door hatch in the US, and after looking more closely at the E as well as the new Volkswagen ID 3 electric hatch, we can see why.

But first positive. The Honda E electric car looks as amazing as you might remember from the previous two iterations. Personally, the whole design is effective for those looking for a small car with first-class details (such as the awesome, vague Mercedes memory wheels). And unlike the much larger bourgeois hatch, the E doesn't feel overstuffed. At its press conference, Honda put smart E-circular headlights on before the sheets were pulled off, luring an audience who can recognize the retro design used on the Mercedes G-Class and Jeep Wrangler as well.

Premium-small car feel continues inside, with matte wood-like embellishments that immediately remind me of what's inside the Honda Clarity (this is a good association). You are immediately drawn to the dashboard on screens that extend from one side to the other. Because Europe lets rear-facing cameras take the place of full exterior mirrors, the Honda E is one of the newest cars to take advantage of this. So the edge of the cabin has small screens that show what's behind you; It remains to be seen how long it can take to get used to a screen inside the car instead of a single mirror on the outside. Nevertheless, the effect of an interior full of displays complements the car's otherwise recoil styling.

Honda E Range, Pricing … and the Volkswagen ID 3

At its Frankfurt auto conference, Honda mentioned that the E was designed and developed specifically for European customers. Many US customers would probably do well with an estimated 8.0 seconds acceleration to 100 km / h. But in an era of 259 kilometers of Chevrolet bolts and 300 plus kilometers of Teslas, many US customers may not agree with the E- series. According to Honda's internal data, E's reach will peak at 136 miles, and even then, if E were ever to be measured against EPA's standards, that figure could shrink even more.

Honda already has 40,000 interests in the E-car, which is impressive. Pricing starts (in the UK) at £ 26,160 for a 100 kW model. Volkswagen has not yet released prices from the UK on its new electric hatch ID 3 (will not be coming to the US either), but the more spacious car has been promised below 30,000 euros, corresponding to Honda's German market estimate. In other words, VW seems to be offering a larger package with a range of just over 200 miles in the base model (on European WLTP standards; it will be lower in the US).

If size is not a factor However, the sweet Honda E-electric car seems to be positioned as a slightly premium design entry for buyers who are just planning to drive. Remove Volkswagen's thick show-car wheels, and ID 3 almost looks like a next-generation Golf variant – cool, but not as charming as Honda. None of the cars come to the US, but we look forward to driving these electric cars from Volkswagen and Honda.


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