Honda 0 and Afeela EVs could share a platform

Honda could develop its new 0 electric cars on the same platform as Afeela EVs, a joint venture between Honda and Sony. The former plans to unveil the first car in its new EV range in 2026.

Image: Honda

This was first reported by Nikkei. It says that a platform contributes roughly 10 per cent to the cost of an EV, and developing a new one costs over $100 billion (about €92 billion). Honda and Sony are collaborating to trim costs and speed up development. With this tie-up, the Japanese duo aims to combat the rising cost competitiveness of Chinese electric car companies.

In 2022, Honda established an equally owned joint venture called ‘Sony Honda Mobility (SHM)’ for high-end electric cars under the Afeela brand. SHM unveiled a new electric sedan in concept form in 2023 and plans to exhibit its production version in 2025. It will differentiate its EVs with a strong focus on in-car experience. For example, customers will be able to play games from their PlayStation console at home remotely.

The Honda 0 Series could thus sit on the same platform. The company showcased two concept cars under the 0 Series at CES 2024 – namely the Saloon and the Space-Hub (MPV). According to media reports, a final version of the former could be presented as early as next year.

Honda suggests it wants to keep the upcoming platform thin so that it can set the floor height low and thus offer more passenger space. The company says the batteries of the 0 Series models will take just about 10-15 minutes for a 15-80% fast-charging session and expects them to retain more than 90% capacity after 10 years of use, giving customers stress-free ownership. It is likely to use pouch-type lithium-ion batteries in at least the upcoming electric sedan.

Honda will launch seven EVs ranging from small to large size under the 0 Series by 2030, with the production version of the Saloon concept sitting at the top of the range. The company is looking at offering these cars first in North America and then in Japan, Asia, and Europe as well as the Middle East and South America. Nikkei estimates the average price of the Honda 0 Series EVs to be around $40,000 and claims the new electric car family will include luxury models as well.

Honda will manufacture the 0 Series electric sedan in Marysville (Ohio), US, starting in late 2025 and source its batteries from a nearby 40 GWh factory owned in partnership with LG Energy Solutions in Fayette County in the same state. Thus, it may launch the car in the US in early 2026. SHM also aims to start delivering its electric sedan in 2026, beginning with North American markets in the Spring and then in Japan by the end of the year. (paywall), (concepts and data), (“Thin, Light, and Wise” approach)


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