Honda has released the first sketch previewing its fully-electric Prologue SUV, set to be launched in 2024.
The Prologue is the first of 30 new EVs set to be introduced globally by the Japanese marque by 2030 enroute to carbon-neutrality in 2050, while the 2024 launch date is the first of three hard timelines put in place by Honda: by 2026, production and sales of a range of new electric vehicles will begin, all of which will sit atop the new, EV-dedicated ‘Honda e:Architecture’; and by 2027, Honda, in collaboration with General Motors, will begin production and sales of “a new series of affordable electric vehicles” to North America. By the end of the decade, Honda has targeted two million sales, with 500,000 EVs set to be sold in North America alone.
“The Prologue is Honda’s first electric vehicle in Canada and is the result of a strategic North American plan announced two years ago that includes a collaboration with GM to produce EVs in a more efficient manner,” Honda Canada vice president Steve Hui explains. “The Prologue signifies our transition to electrification, with more Honda engineered and manufactured EVs in North America coming in 2026. Our Canadian dealers are excited to see it come to their showrooms.”
Interestingly, though exemplifying the “clean, simple and timeless values” of Honda, the design of the Prologue has been primarily pulled together using virtual reality, a program Honda states overcame the “challenges related to remote work requirements during the COVID pandemic.” VR also gave Honda’s design team the freedom to conceive a “modern and fresh design,” one that sits well with the brand’s existing electrified models, while simultaneously representing the electrified era to come.
Though the long wheelbase and short overhangs, for example, are very ‘Honda’, the super slim headlamps and aggressively raked windshield are a notable step away from the brand’s conventional design. Said features also give the SUV a “simple surface direction,” one that will aid airflow – and thus electric range – and reduce cabin noise.
Granted, as a teaser sketch, these elements could yet be tweaked before the production model is revealed.
“As the project leader for the exterior design of the Honda Prologue, it was very exciting to work with a young team of designers with new capabilities to create an SUV with clean, simple lines and a strong influence from our global EV models,” exterior design leader Jiro Ikeda continues. “We balanced that with a neo-rugged look that you see in our current lineup to ensure Prologue represents a true Honda EV.”
Co-developed by GM, the Prologue was (virtually) penned at the Honda Design Studio in Los Angeles in collaboration with the brand’s global design team in Japan.
Details regarding the drivetrain remain fuzzy, though it’s likely the Prologue will feature the same Ultium battery packs already at the heart of the GMC Hummer, Cadillac Lyriq and Chevrolet Silverado EV, among others. It’s also been speculated that the Prologue may even boast the same 100 kWh lithium-ion battery as the Lyriq crossover.