Well we’ve been waiting this car for the last three years and it’s quite magnificent.
The all electric Honda E is now with us and while it’s expensive there will be plenty of customers queuing up to buy one.
It has a range of around 120 miles and there are two models. The basic model is £26,660 while the E Advance, with more kit, comes in at £29,160. If you are looking at finance then you have to find £250 per month.
While it’s more expensive than the Skoda Citigo-e, the Renault Zoe and the electric MINI it is at the top of the quality tree and certain to be at the top of the reliability tree as well.
The standard model features a side camera mirror system, electronic parking brake with auto hold, regenerative braking, My Honda+ app compatibility, pre-conditioning climate schedule, charging wait time schedule, single pedal control, leather steering wheel, climate control, front heated seats, under-boot charging cable storage, ambient lighting, mobile phone pocket, rear-view camera, front and rear parking sensors, 12.3-inch dual touchscreen display with DAB radio, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Bluetooth, HDMI input, four USB inputs, six speakers, steering wheel infotainment control, charging port, pop-out door handles, sky roof, rear privacy glass, rear spoiler, automatic LED headlights, LED daytime running lights, high-beam support system, 16-inch alloy wheels, adaptive cruise control, collision mitigation braking system, intelligent speed limiter, lane keeping assist system, road departure mitigation system, traffic sign recognition, lead car departure notification system, alarm and immobiliser.
The Advance model adds a front windshield de-icer, Honda parking pilot, heated steering wheel, 230V electrical outlet, premium audio with eight speakers, choice of 16- or 17-inch alloy wheels, centre camera mirror system, blind spot information, cross traffic monitor.
But how does it handle? And the answer is pretty well.
It has the characteristics of electric cars – instant acceleration and no engine noise. The Advance model has the more powerful 154PS motor and it is quick enough, zooming around town.
The electric motor is in the back, driving the rear wheels with the batteries under the floor making the Honda E quick off the mark. It has a turning circle tight, easy to park and Honda is proud of its 50:50 weight distribution and low centre of gravity.
Drivers have two selectable drive modes and there is also a single-pedal mode which, with some careful driving, means you can resort to one-pedal driving. It’ll slow the car down as soon as you lift off the accelerator, pumping energy back into the battery and preventing you from having to use the brakes around town.
There is a new, rear-wheel drive bespoke electric architecture with the lithium-ion batteries are mounted as low as possible in the floorpan and capacity is rated at 35.5kWh, which is paired to a single electric motor available in two power outputs – 134 or 152bhp (both with 232lb ft of torque). It’s enough thrust to guarantee a 0-62mph dash in nine seconds for the less powerful E, and 8.0sec for the more powerful Honda E Advance. Top speed is 100mph.
A quick top up at a 50kW public charger will take the E’s battery to 80 per cent in around half an hour, while a 7.4kW home wallbox will top it up to full in a little over four hours. Plugging it in using a standard three-pin socket takes just under 19 hours.
There is bags of new technology here in the new E. There are no fewer than five screens spread across the dash, including two infotainment displays and even digital screens instead of conventional mirrors.
The inside is excellent using a mixture of wood and contemporary materials to provide a lounge-like feel. A flat floor means there is plenty of space up front, but not much room for rear-seat passengers and there is a small boot at 171-litres. But the rear seats fold flat easily should you do need more room.
The seats are reasonably comfortable and there is a two-spoke steering wheel. There are big windows and a standard-fit sunroof.
I don’t like the side-view cameras where my driving hand got in the way of my right hand and the central rear-view mirror camera gets pretty hot should you touch it after an hour’s drive. Thankfully you can switch it to a regular mirror.
But without doubt this is a car of the future and it’s brilliant.