The return of the Honda Prelude has stirred considerable anticipation, especially as the automotive industry increasingly embraces electrification. Initially, Honda had announced intentions to introduce a pair of sports models powered solely by batteries. However, the recent unveiling of the Prelude concept at the 2023 Tokyo Auto Show has brought a twist to this narrative, as it surprisingly boasts a hybrid powertrain.
This unexpected development led to Honda’s confirmation of its plans to bring the Prelude concept into production. The company also took proactive steps to renew the Prelude trademark earlier this year, signaling a genuine commitment to this iconic nameplate.
Historically, the Prelude, which first graced Japanese roads in 1978, has been celebrated for its sporty persona and sleek design, complemented by the dependable mechanical components it shared with Honda’s more mainstream models. The production of this beloved coupe ceased after the 2002 model year, marking the end of an illustrious five-generation legacy.
Interestingly, while the Prelude concept on display in Tokyo exudes a production-ready aura, it’s worth noting that Honda’s U.S. spokesperson, Andrew Quillen, has confirmed that this concept features a gas-electric drivetrain, contrary to initial expectations of an all-electric vehicle. This revelation raises intriguing questions about the ultimate direction of the Prelude and the fate of the two promised electric sports cars.
Previously, there were speculations that a Honda battery-electric vehicle (BEV) sports car might share some foundational elements with other forthcoming Honda EVs. However, it appears that the recently announced Ultium platform and battery technology, borrowed from General Motors for the 2024 Prologue and 2024 Acura ZDX crossovers, will not underpin these models due to evolving dynamics between Honda and GM.
Furthermore, Honda had been engaged in a collaborative effort with GM to develop a line of affordable EVs. Regrettably, this endeavor has been shelved, canceling plans for the first jointly developed model, which was initially slated for a 2027 release.
Honda has, in response, expedited the development of its own EV platform, primarily for medium and large-sized vehicles, with the first of these anticipated to be a crossover arriving in 2025. Additionally, the collaboration with Sony to create the Afeela-branded lineup of small electric cars is another significant step in Honda’s electric vehicle strategy.
In alignment with global trends towards electrification, Honda has outlined ambitions to make at least 30 EVs available worldwide by 2030. Among these will be the second sports model, which was announced last year and is rumored to be a new NSX supercar.
While the hybrid Prelude concept currently shines brightly on the horizon, the fate of the two promised battery-electric Honda sports cars remains somewhat uncertain.
Update: Honda has subsequently clarified that the Prelude concept is equipped with a hybrid powertrain, dispelling earlier notions of it having a battery-electric powertrain. Our initial report erroneously suggested an EV drivetrain for the vehicle.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Hybrid Prelude Concept
Q: What is the Honda Prelude concept unveiled at the Tokyo Auto Show?
A: The Honda Prelude concept showcased at the Tokyo Auto Show is a hybrid-powered coupe concept, marking a surprising departure from initial expectations of it being a fully electric vehicle.
Q: Is the Honda Prelude concept going into production?
A: Yes, Honda has confirmed its plans to develop the Prelude concept from the Tokyo Auto Show for production, demonstrating a genuine commitment to reviving this iconic nameplate.
Q: What is the historical significance of the Honda Prelude?
A: The Prelude, launched in Japan in 1978, has a rich history as a sporty front-wheel-drive coupe, known for its sleek design and dependable mechanical components. Production of the Prelude ceased after the 2002 model year, concluding a five-generation legacy.
Q: What drivetrain does the Honda Prelude concept feature?
A: Contrary to initial expectations of an all-electric powertrain, the Prelude concept, at least in its current form, sports a gas-electric hybrid drivetrain.
Q: What implications does this hybrid Prelude concept have for Honda’s electric sports cars?
A: The hybrid Prelude concept’s unexpected hybrid powertrain has raised questions about the future of Honda’s electric sports cars, as it departs from the initial plan of purely battery-electric sports models.
Q: Was there a plan for Honda to collaborate with GM on electric vehicles?
A: Yes, Honda had been working on a collaborative effort with General Motors to develop affordable electric vehicles, but this plan has since been canceled.
Q: What are Honda’s broader ambitions in the electric vehicle market?
A: Honda aims to have at least 30 electric vehicles available globally by 2030, including the second sports model, which is rumored to be a new NSX supercar.
Q: How is Honda adjusting its electric vehicle strategy in response to recent developments?
A: Honda has expedited the development of its own EV platform for medium and large-sized models and is cooperating with Sony to create a lineup of small electric cars under the Afeela brand.
Q: What recent developments have influenced Honda’s choice of electric vehicle technology?
A: Honda’s decision not to use the Ultium platform and battery technology from General Motors for its upcoming electric vehicles is a notable development in its EV strategy.
Q: Is there any update or correction to the initial information provided about the Prelude concept?
A: Yes, Honda has clarified that the Prelude concept features a hybrid powertrain, not a battery-electric powertrain, as was initially reported.
More about Hybrid Prelude Concept
- Honda Prelude Concept Unveiled at Tokyo Auto Show
- History of the Honda Prelude
- Honda’s Electric Vehicle Ambitions
- Collaboration Between Honda and General Motors
- Ultium Platform and Battery Technology
- Afeela-Branded Electric Cars
- Future of Electric Sports Cars