Shares GM Platform, Will Launch in Early 2024 With Tax Credit Eligibility
Honda’s new Prologue electric SUV will have a least one version capable of delivering up to 300 miles of range when it hits the market early next year, the automaker said. The Prologue EV, corporate cousin of the pending Acura ZDX, will be the Honda brand’s only all-electric model after the 2020 discontinuation of the Clarity EV. But it is the first of a string of EVs the automaker plans to launch globally by 2030.
The Prologue is also the first Honda SUV to use Google Built-in, the Google-based infotainment system the provides access to myriad Google apps including the hands-free Google Assistant voice recognition.
While the the Prologue and Acura ZDX are using General Motors Corp. Ultium EV platform and batteries, Honda is developing its own and said it will have an all-Honda mid- to large electric SUV ready for market in 2025.
Meantime, the Prologue will be assembled in North America – at GM’s plant in Ramos Arizpe, Mexico – and use batteries from GM’s Ultium joint venture with LG Energy Solution. The combination should make the new Honda EV eligible under new rules for a federal tax credit of up to $7,500 – something rival small electric SUVs from Toyota, Subaru and Hyundai can’t yet match.
(The Acura ZDX is expected to be built at GM’s Springhill, Tenn., EV plant alongside the Cadillac Lyriq, which with it shares powertrain components.)
Honda is withholding pricing information until closer to the Prologue’s launch date – figure just under $50,000 for the base model before incentives – but has revealed some key features of the new EV, which will share many electrical powertrain components with the upcoming Chevrolet Blazer EV.
The Prologue EV will come in three trim levels – EX, Touring and Elite. Front-wheel drive will be standard for the EX and Touring, with optional all-wheel rive. The Elite wil come only with all-wheel drive.
Power and Range
All-wheel drive variants will use two motors, one on each axle, that deliver a combined 288 horsepower and 333 pound-feet of torque.
Honda hasn’t released specs for the front-drive system, which will use a single motor driving the front wheels, but we suspect it will come in at around 200 to 215 horsepower.
We also expect that the Prologue’s all-wheel drive system will be electronic and software-driven, with no physical connection between front and rear wheels.
There will be just one battery size – 85 kilowatt-hours – and Honda estimates a 300-mile range for the single-motor Prologue with 19-inch wheels and tires. The company hasn’t provided an estimate for the dual-motor version with 19-inch wheels, but we expect it to come in at 270 to 280 miles. Because it has both AWD and 21-inch wheels, the Elite could be down in the 260-to 270-mile range.
Charging the Prologue
Honda has signed a deal with two large public charging networks to allow Prologue owners to access and pay at EVgo and Electrify America DC fast charging stations . Honda also has said that its 2024 Honda and Acura EV with be able to use the Tesla Supercharger network.
And Honda is part of an automaker coalition building a network of high-speed (350 kW maximum) DC fast-charge stations across the U.S.and Canada, with the first few expected to be open in the last half of in 2024.
The Prologue will be able to charge at fast-charge stations at a rate of up to 155 kilowatts an hour. That should be good for a sub 30-minute session to bring a 90% depleted battery back up to 80% of capacity.
Public charging stations- there are thousands of them – can be accessed and charging paid for in a single “plug and charge” step via the Honda Link app.
Additionally, Prologue EV buyers will get their choice of:
- A $750 public charging credit,
- An 11.5-kilowatt Level 2 home charging station plus a $500 installation credit and a $100 public charging credit, all through Honda Home Electrification (HHE), or
- A 7.6 kW portable Level 2 charging kit, a $250 installation credit (in case a new circuit is needed for the portable unit) and a $300 public charging credit, via HHE.
[Check out our EV charging primer.]
The Prologue is a five-seat, midsize, all-electric SUV that’s slightly longer than and the same width as the Passport SUV, although the EV’s roofline is almost 7 inches closer to the ground.
While the Prologue’ is overall length 2.9 inches more than than the Passport’s , its 121.8-inch wheelbase is almost 11 inches longer. That should should provide for more legroom in the EV – and the Passport is pretty spacious.
Honda says cargo space in the Prologue EV’s base trim will be 25.5 cubic feet behind the rear seats and 57. 7 cubic-feet with the rear seats folded down. that’s a lot less than the Passport’s 77.7 cubes behind the seats and 100.9 cu.-ft. with the rear seats down There’s also a small, half-cubic-foot storage bin under the Prologue’s cargo floor.
There’s no trim-by-trim list yet of all 2024 Honda Prologue features, but here’s what we do know:
The EX and Touring trims will get 19-inch alloys and tires as standard; the Elite gets 21-inchers.
All trims get an 11-inch digital driver info display and an 11.3-inch color infotainment center touchscreen. wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, wireless phone charging, four UCB-C ports – two front and two rear, heated front seats, two-position recline for the rear seat backs, and over-the-air software updates .
Exclusive to the Touring and Elite trims are a Bose premium sound system, leather upholstery a driver seat memory system, auto dimming rear view mirror, a 12-speaker Bose premium sound system, panoramic sunroof, hands-free powered tailgate, and front and rear parking assist.
The Elite also gets perforated leather upholstery, ventilated front seats, a heated steering wheel, a Sport driving mode and = a color head-up display
All Prologue EV trims also get the Honda Sensing suite of advanced safety and driver assistance technologies, including Honda’s first applications of automated rear cross traffic emergency braking, rear pedestrian alert and blind zone steering assist. Other features include front collision and road departure mitigation, lane departure warning and lane keeping assist, and adaptive cruise control.