Electric propulsion dominated Honda’s line-up of concepts at the 42nd Tokyo Motor Show this past December. There were a couple of new bikes, of course – of which more next month – but what really stood out were EVs of every flavour, from fold-up commuters to sporty runabouts.
Honda calls it “the next-generation electric small sports concept model”. An electric rear-wheel-drive two-seater convertible sports car, the EV-ster combines a sports-car spirit with electromotive mobility.
Extensive use of carbon materials has helped cut weight and thereby improves efficiency, resulting in a range of about 160 km.
Steering is by twin levers rather than a wheel, and the driver is able to adjust vehicle characteristics such as motor output and suspension settings.
Top speed is 160 km/h and acceleration from 0-60 km takes 5,0 seconds. It uses a 10 kWh lithium-ion battery (maximum output 58 kW) that recharges in less than 3 hours at 200 V.
This next-generation plug-in hybrid vehicle is designed to improve on occupant comfort and driver enjoyment in a variety of driving situations, whether in-town or out. It offers “engine drive mode” for more aggressive driving or an “automatic drive mode” for more relaxed driving.
Hop on, and it’s hip urban transport. Fold away the steering and seat, and it can be easily loaded in your car for the trip back home.
Honda’s vision of a next-generation commuter is basically the company’s unique three-wheeled scooter with an EV powertrain. Although it’s designed for personal use, it can be used as a delivery vehicle: a storage “boot” can be added.
To start off with, it’s a compact EV two-wheeler commuter. But wait, there’s more: loaded into the Micro Commuter, its detachable battery can be used as a power source.
Being a multifaceted company – spanning bikes, cars, power, boating and aircraft – Honda was able to combine the creative input of its car and motorcycle R&D centres to create a micro-sized, futuristic, electric city commuter. It’s said to offer a new type of communication between people and mobility and an exterior that the owner can customise casually. The bike/car collaboration came in handy when integrating the Motor Compo (see below) two-wheel EV commuter with the Micro Commuter.