Company debuts two new concept production models in its new 0 series

Graham Hope

January 10, 2024

3 Min Read
Honda

Honda’s new 0 series of electric cars is coming – and the automaker explained its vision at a presentation at CES that saw the debut of two dramatically styled concepts.

The futuristic Saloon is intended to preview the first production model in the 0 Series, due in 2026, and made quite an impression with its sleek, low-slung appearance and moody black paint job.

In contrast, the Space-Hub looks much more like what we would expect from a people carrier, with a lavish interior that’s clearly been created to take advantage of the potential for heavily automated driving.

The looks of both will most probably be significantly toned down by the time they reach showrooms. But what won’t be diluted are the core values of the 0 Series range, created by Honda using a “Thin Light and Wise” approach, as an antidote to the increasingly weighty electric cars that are becoming common.

Artistic design, driving enjoyment and strong electric efficiency performance make up three of these core values, and they’re joined by a pledge to deliver automated driving (AD) and advanced driver assistance system (ADAS) tech that ensures a high level of safety, plus the creation of interior spaces that offer new opportunities courtesy of IoT and connectivity.

On the AD/ADAS front, Honda pointed out that it has already produced a Level 3 capable production car in 2021 – the Legend, which was available in limited numbers in Japan – and that the SENSING Elite tech which featured on that car would be used for initial 0 Series models to provide driver assistance.

The capability will evolve further in the late 2020s, when 0 Series cars will be offered with AD tech, featuring more advanced AI, sensing, recognition, decision-making and driver monitoring technologies.

According to Honda, that will make “some of the hands-off functions currently available only on expressways available on regular roads.” Significantly, the promo video of the Space-Hub shows the car driving itself.

In the 0 Series cabins, Honda is promising more in the way of connected fun, with AI and big data being used to learn preferences, such as musical tastes, while also picking up driver behaviors. As has been a theme with automakers at this year’s CES, there is also a desire for AI to offer more emotional engagement and “understand the feelings of the user.”

Details on the platform Honda will use for the 0 Series remain thin on the ground, although it did say it will use what it terms e-Axles “with excellent power conversion efficiency and packaging, lightweight, high-density battery packs and excellent aerodynamic performance.”

The new range of EVs will also feature a redesigned H badge, with North America slated to be the first market for launch in two years’ time.

Read more about:

CES 2024

About the Author(s)

Graham Hope

Graham Hope has worked in automotive journalism in the U.K. for 26 years, including spells as editor of leading consumer news website and weekly Auto Express and respected buying guide CarBuyer.

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