A Honda electric SUV will be launched in the U.S. market for the 2024 model year. It could be the rumored Honda CR-V EV based on GM’s third-gen global EV platform and powered by the American automaker’s Ultium batteries, as discussed in this story.
Joint development of electric vehicles by GM & Honda
General Motors had entered an agreement with Honda in April 2020 to co-develop two EVs based on GM’s third-gen global EV platform and powered by Ultium batteries first used for the Hummer electric pickup and the Cadillac Lyriq. The companies expect sales of the first Honda EV to begin as the 2024 model year in the Canadian and American markets but did not discuss the model names or body styles. However, it was said in the announcement that the exterior and interior of both vehicles would be exclusively designed by Honda, while engineers would modify the platform to match Honda’s driving characteristics.
Honda saw the partnership as a way to quickly put electric vehicles on the road and accelerate its electrification roadmap. The combined manufacturing efficiencies and scale would provide customers greater value.
Honda CR-V EV & Acura electric SUV on Ultium tech
Honda’s electric SUVs in the North American market for the 2024 model year will include one from the Honda brand and the other from Acura.
In January, autonews.com indicated that the U.S. production of the Honda CR-V EV derived from the next-gen Honda CR-V could begin in 2023. The report said that GM would begin manufacturing two crossover EVs, one Honda, and one Acura model, within four years. The Honda model will arrive first, and it will roll out of GM’s Ramos Arizpe plant. This factory is currently responsible for producing the Chevrolet Blazer and Equinox.
In November 2020, a Japanese report had stated that the Honda CR-V, the second best-selling SUV in the U.S., will get an EV variant in the next generation, thanks to GM’s Utium EV technology. bestcarweb.jp, which holds a decent record of getting Japanese model scoops right, indicated in its report that at least three Honda EVs are in the pipeline. One is the next-gen Honda NSX, the second is a large sedan (possibly the next-gen Honda Accord or next-gen Honda Insight), and the third is the Honda CR-V EV.
New CR-V in 2022, Honda CR-V EV in 2023
The next-gen gas-powered Honda CR-V is expected to go on sale in the U.S. by the end of 2022, and it is logical to expect the first-ever Honda CR-V EV with GM’s Ultium batteries in dealer showrooms by late-2023. The Honda CR-V is the fifth highest-selling vehicle in the U.S., and customers in North America who feel electric is ideal for commute would definitely consider the EV variant while shopping for a new crossover.
The fifth-gen Honda CR-V that debuted in 2016 is seen as an evolutionary upgrade from the fourth-gen model. Big changes on the design front are expected from the sixth-gen Honda CR-V, and the EV version could be the most radical-looking of all generations.
Video Source: YouTube/Honda
With the release of the eleventh-gen Civic, Honda is upgrading its interior design philosophy to “Simplicity and Something.” Future Honda cars will have a simpler and more elegant design. From the teaser (above), we expect every new Honda coming to the market to have a low-profile dashboard, compact, flat-bottomed steering wheel, slim climate control panel, wide touchscreen infotainment system, and fully digital instrument cluster.
For the CR-V EV, Honda will likely upgrade its design philosophy to reduce the visual noise further and focus on comfort and digitalization. Based on a dedicated EV platform, the CR-V EV should be more spacious than a similar-sized gasoline SUV in passenger and storage space. A longer interior space and the lack of a transmission tunnel would make it a practical SUV.
While it’s early to talk about the specifications, assume that Honda would target an EPA-estimated range of at least 250 miles. It will need quite a large battery pack with an energy storage capacity of at least 65 kWh. As for the CR-V EV’s price, the company could aim for a base figure of around $35,000. The Honda CR-V Electric’s competitors would be models like the VW ID.4, the Nissan Ariya, the Subaru Evoltis, and the Toyota BZ4X.
Honda EV strategy in North America
Honda aims to make EV and FCEVs account for 40% of its sales in North America by 2030. By 2035, it wants to increase that number to 80%. The ultimate goal is a 100% zero-emission line-up in the region by 2040. The CR-V could be the first milestone on Honda’s BEV journey. The brand will generate EVs based on a new in-house ‘e:Architecture’ from the second half of the decade.
Honda CR-V Electric FAQs
What is the Honda CR-V EV’s release date?
Official confirmation of a CR-V electric is awaited this year. It could go on sale in the second half of 2023.
What will be the Honda CR-V EV price?
Honda could price the CR-V electric from around $35,000.
Featured image: Render of the next-gen Honda CR-V by BestCar magazine.