In some ways, not least how much visual charm it offers, the E feels like something totally fresh and really interesting in the expanding electric car market. In the way it drives, however, it’s very much like a car designed and engineered ‘after’ the BMW i3, by a firm convinced it could go one better.

So if the idea of a stylish, all-electric premium city car always enticed you but BMW’s feisty, springy, up-and-at-’em chassis tuning and alternative looks didn’t, here’s a Honda with comparable compactness, desirability and its own sense of style – but a much more relaxed and rounded urban ride to accompany its manoeuvrability. It’s like an i3 but a lot less quirky and more grown up.

More than just a pretty face in the EV crowd; limited range an issue

This car is sufficiently enjoyable to drive in town, and to travel in, that it could please a raft of quite different buyers, and for different reasons. Its limited range is likely to stop it becoming a default choice, and keeps the E at arm’s length from the class lead. It might also stop first-time EV buyers apprehensive about electric motoring from choosing the E.

For anyone already resolved that a short-range electric car would suit just fine, it could be first in the queue – but, we fear, that won’t be a great many.

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