Test electric car honda e: cool instead of functional

Honda’s cuddly "e" entices with great cabin, rear-wheel drive and good chassis. However, price and function unfortunately speak against a honda e as a second car.

(picture: clemens gleich)

  • Clemens gleich

"That’s cool!", most people exclaim when they see the interior of the honda e. A strip of five screens stretches across a lowboard made of imitation wood. Underneath, a flat floor with stylish (retractable drink holder) or practical (earthed socket with 1500 watt power) accessories in chic japanese simplicity. Instead of exterior mirrors: cameras with screens.

Rear-wheel drive

The car drives great on top. the well-balanced chassis is fun, and despite the practical engine room under the hood instead of frunk, honda has fortunately afforded a rear-wheel drive. The e can push hard out of curves and scores points in the city with plenty of steering input, which results in a crisply small turning circle of 9.2 meters. Honda rounds out the package with a spacey design that quotes hondas small cars of the 1960s and 1970s, such as the sweet N600. You can even find lines of honda’s 2010 concept EV-N again, because that did the same thing.

All this costs money: honda wants at least 33.see 850 euros – a lot of ash for a car that doesn’t go 200 km at a stretch. However, the target group could be similar to that of a mini cooper SE or a fiat 500 abarth, so the honda e could promote itself as the cool second car of the household. but it’s annoying that honda has built very close to the concept car. Many of the e’s systems work quite nicely in demonstrations and often not at all in everyday use.

Technology, infotainment and the geneva conventions

The screen behind the steering wheel belongs to the speedometer displays. The two screens in the middle and on the right belong to infotainment/telematics. The most used system as always: navigation. Fortunately honda had this system made by garmin. Garmin is the company that always wants to lead me the wrong way down one-way streets, but at least they can do their job better than honda itself. Honda’s own navigation systems have always been less a case for usability reviews and more a case for the geneva conventions.

However, there is a lack of system integration here. for example the online voice assistant: "navigate me to XY!" -> system says OK. But nothing happens. sometimes the assi claims he doesn’t understand me. However, since he indicates what he understands, I often want to accuse him of lying. He completely understands what I said. He just has no idea what to do then, and that’s not because of the voice recognition (the manufacturers buy them all), but because of the user guidance, which the manufacturers unfortunately do themselves. Sometimes the assi answers in a curious mix of denglish, which completes the concept car impression.

Honda e exterior (18 pictures)

Lousy heating

I don’t want to dwell on the infotainment, it’s simply a bit grouchy. You get along (see stellantis) finally somehow with it. But there are also other problems with the function in many places. The heating capacity of the steering wheel and windshield heater is so tightly dimensioned that both could have been omitted. The steering wheel only warms up minimally in places, in spurts, as if an old chain smoker on his deathbed were giving you a cool hand. A different way to warm cold fingers. The heating disc heats so weakly that honda always supports with blower, which then does the main work. These are clear misdimensionings.

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