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Honda Malaysia focusing on hybrid tech for now, it’s a ‘more practical solution’; switch to EVs later – CEO

Honda Malaysia focusing on hybrid tech for now, it’s a ‘more practical solution’; switch to EVs later – CEO

Honda will focus on hybrids for now before an eventual switch to full electric vehicles in the future. Conventional hybrids – such as the e:HEV variants of the the City, Civic, HR-V and CR-V sold here – require no charging in exchange for improved fuel economy, and this is described as a ‘more practical solution’.

“Now we’re preparing a comprehensive electrification strategy following the global direction. Finally, we’ll come back to a 100% BEV world, but we’ll decide country by country depending on the situation and demand. In Malaysia, at this moment we’re focusing on hybrid as a more practical solution first. At a certain time, we’ll come back to full electric,” Honda Malaysia MD and CEO Hironobu Yoshimura said at yesterday’s launch of the new CR-V.

Honda and Toyota were hybrid pioneers globally and also in Malaysia, where a tax-free window for CBU hybrids saw good response in the early 2010s. Later, the European premium brands started offering plug-in hybrids here, but PHEVs have never been a big thing with T&H and all hybrid offerings thus far have been of the conventional self-charging variety.

Honda e:NP2 Prototype (left), e:NS2 Prototype (right)

We’re now in the age of EVs, and Japan isn’t in the forefront of this movement, even though Nissan was a pioneer with the Leaf before electric cars burst into the mainstream scene. Both the Leaf and Mitsubishi i-MiEV were sold in Malaysia before anyone ever heard of Tesla.

Back to Honda. One of the best ICE makers in the car world, so far they only have the cute but low range Honda e, the e:Ny1 (basically a HR-V EV), and more recently, the Prologue SUV jointly developed with GM to show for, but more are coming soon. Very soon in fact, as Honda is set to debut a new EV series of models for global markets at CES in January 2024. Also debuting in early 2024 are electric crossovers for the China market.

Click on the links to read more about the upcoming Honda EVs.

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