Honda Prologue EV SUV Gets First Design Preview Ahead Of US Launch

Gas prices are soaring around the globe, leaving many drivers wondering if now is the time to consider switching to an EV. Car manufacturers, meanwhile, have been steadily coming up with their own solutions to mitigate the effects of fuel shortage, hand in hand with combating climate change, and Honda is just the latest following this trend. It revealed its plans for the fully-electric Honda Prologue SUV back in June 2021, but now we have a better idea of what the EV could look like. On May 18, 2022, Honda unveiled a design preview of its upcoming electric SUV, and at the same time a vision of the future of its EV-focused dealerships. 

Honda included several sketches in its design preview announcement, though it's always safe to assume that these are subject to change before a final build is shown off. According to Honda, these sketches took about 2 years to put together, following the announcement of its collaboration with General Motors in 2020. It'll be GM's Ultium platform – as underpins the Hummer EV and upcoming Cadillac Lyriq - on which the Prologue is built.

At first glance, the design looks much like any other recent SUV. The sketch depicts a sleek four-door with beefy bumpers and extra wheel cladding. The sturdy-looking front grille is accompanied by what appear to be a futuristic array of slimline LED headlights, not unlike what we've seen equipped onto the Tesla Cybertruck, but their implementation is notably less obnoxious and far more subtle than the Elon Musk's pickup. It wouldn't be an EV if you couldn't power it up, meanwhile, and so there's what looks to be a charging port in front of the driver's door.

Ambitious goals and dealerships to match

Honda has big ambitions for the Prologue, though we've expressed skepticism about the automaker's projected sales targets in the past. Since then, of course, the world has changed considerable. The global fuel crisis — led in no small part by Russia's invasion of Ukraine — has seen prices spike worldwide, and the car market could have taken on a much different shape by the time Honda's EV finally hits the ground in 2024. As reported by The Washington Post on May 18, 2022, United States Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen stated that the cost of gasoline has increased by $4 across the country, and there's no expectation for that to change any time soon.

That requires actually building EVs to meet demand, however, something every automaker has experienced issues with in the past few years. The impact of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic on global supply chains has been considerable, and shows no signs of alleviating any time soon. Honda may have plenty of demand for the 2024 Prologue, then, but whether it can actually meet that remains uncertain. 

At least the dealerships themselves should be ready for the EV future, even if production lines aren't necessarily at capacity. The early designs for the modular, charging station-equipped locations show a layout that Honda claims will scale according to the total number of EVs it actually sells. The automaker plans to roll out 30 different EV models by 2030, using not only Ultium but its own Honda e:Architecture, at which point it also expects to have sold a whopping 500,000 EVs overall.