Honda has begun teasing out the electric Prologue in earnest, with its latest offering being a sketch of what appears to be a lifted Civic. Though what we’re actually seeing is the brand’s newest “adventure-ready” SUV tapping into the same inoffensive design language that now graces the ever-popular sedan.
The styling is neutral, perhaps even a little dull. But it’s unlikely to put anybody in a bad mood and is still rounded off in all the places one would expect from an EV. The Prologue looks as though it could come from Lucid, just with a dash of rugged design from Rivian and underpinned by Honda’s current design language. There’s little to gripe about, though there’s also not much to ogle.
Lighting elements are slim, adhering to the modern trends, with the actual headlamps being located beneath the daytime runners. Honda is likewise putting contemporary plastic cladding around the wheel wells to indicate the Prologue is expected to be driven by people who might someday consider taking it into the wilderness. Visible roof rails tie a bow on the vehicle’s adventurous theme.
Honda is hinting that the car will be competent off the pavement and stated that the model will be outfitted with “capable” tires. Though one wonders how off-road rubber would impact the efficiency of the all-electric model. The set used in the rendering also appears fairly wide, making your author wonder about rolling resistance whenever the SUV isn’t having to ford a river or climb a mountain. But this isn’t an actual photograph of the Prologue and would still be of the pre-production model even if it were.
The aerodynamics appear to be spot-on for a vehicle prioritizing efficiency, however.
As a nice byproduct, lowering the model’s wind resistance should reduce NVH, which can become an issue for EVs due to their lacking the sweet, savory notes of a rich and full-bodied combustion engine. Alright, maybe I’m fetishizing gasoline for a laugh. But the reality is that you really do start to notice wind noise whenever variable engine speeds aren’t there to distract you and EVs often deploy extra soundproofing and/or specific aerodynamic designs to help offset this.
Interested parties should know that this baby isn’t all Honda. Like other Japanese brands, Big H has been hesitant to throw all of its eggs into the electric basket and the Prologue is the direct result of its current partnership with General Motors. The SUV uses the American firm’s Ultium battery platform, rather than being wholly reliant on proprietary hardware from Honda.
Once the Acura equivalent of the model has entered production, the duo is slated to develop a handful of compact crossovers while Honda begins manufacturing its own all-electric vehicles in 2026. These will reportedly be underpinned by the company’s “e:Architecture” with the goal of selling 500,000 EVs in North America by 2030. By 2040, the brand says it will no longer be selling gasoline-powered vehicles. But those distant timelines have a habit of being revised or forgotten, so I wouldn’t bet on anything other than the Prologue arriving early in 2024.[Image: Honda]
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