However, few details about the car have been revealed and Hodgetts said he “will push hard to get meaningful information” so that potential buyers know what they are committing to.
While it’s too early for pricing, Hodgetts recognised it would not be a cheap car despite being a supermini, and that the marque would position it as a premium model.
Hodgetts added that he hoped electric vehicle pricing would start to come in line with combustion-engined models in two or three years’ time.
The electric car, the brand’s first for Europe (Honda already sells an electric Clarity hatchback model in the US and Japan), is built on a new dedicated electric platform and “sets the direction for the technology and design” of its future EVs.
The Urban EV has low and wide proportions and is 100mm shorter than the Jazz supermini, making it 3895mm long. When on sale, the car will not steal sales from other models, which helped its case for production, according to a senior Honda source.
It also uses a Honda emblem backlit in blue, which previews a new styling feature for future EVs from the brand.
At the front of the car between the headlights, interactive messages can be displayed including greetings, advice for other drivers or charging status updates.
Inside, Honda has intended to create maximum visibility for drivers thanks to slim A-pillars and a wide windscreen. Entry and exit from the Urban EV is via rear-hinged coach doors.
A so-called floating dashboard console houses the steering wheel column, a set of simple control buttons and a panoramic screen. The wrap-around screen goes beyond the dashboard and extends into the doors, a feature that works as the car’s wing mirrors through digital camera display.