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Honda Celebrates 25 Years of Hybrid Innovation with European Debut of Prelude Concept

Prelude Concept to Showcase at Goodwood Festival of Speed, Marking Honda’s Legacy of Hybrid Excellence

Honda is commemorating a quarter-century of hybrid performance with the European premiere of the Prelude Concept, confirming the return of this iconic nameplate to the region. The Prelude Concept is set to make its first public appearance at the Goodwood Festival of Speed from July 11-14, 2024.

After its initial reveal at the Japan Mobility Show last year, the Prelude is poised to deliver a harmonious blend of exhilarating driving pleasure and remarkable efficiency, embodying Honda’s long-term commitment to electrification in a sleek and dynamic package.

The original Prelude made its European debut 45 years ago, serving as a high-performance showcase of Honda’s cutting-edge technology through five generations until 2001. The new model promises a worthy return, combining style and sophistication with a hybrid powertrain.

Tomoyuki Yamagami, Chief Engineer and Large Project Leader at Honda Motor, stated, “The new Prelude not only represents the latest chapter in our evolving hybrid story but also embodies 25 years of pioneering hybrid research and development. It maintains its ‘sporty’ DNA by perfectly blending the efficiency and environmental advantages of electrified driving with an exhilarating driving experience.”

The Prelude Concept’s name, inspired by an introductory piece of music, positions the car as a precursor to future models that exemplify Honda’s dedication to sports performance and driving enjoyment for European customers.

A Legacy of Hybrid Performance

Honda’s journey into hybrid technology began 25 years ago with the launch of the revolutionary Insight coupe, Europe’s first mass-produced hybrid model, in 1999. This milestone marked the beginning of Honda’s continuous innovation in petrol-electric powertrain technology, offering drivers a seamless transition to an electrified future.

Following the Insight, Honda introduced the Civic IMA in 2003, featuring a continuously variable transmission (CVT) paired with a 1.3-liter i-VTEC 4-cylinder engine and a 20-horsepower electric motor for enhanced fuel efficiency. The 2010 release of the CR-Z combined Honda’s unique IMA parallel hybrid system with a 1.5-liter petrol engine and manual transmission, balancing driving dynamics and fuel economy.

The Jazz Hybrid, launched in 2011, continued to offer practicality with features like “Magic Seats” and 300 liters of boot space, thanks to the compact Honda IMA hybrid system. The 2016 NSX introduced the most technologically advanced all-wheel drive hybrid powertrain of its time to the supercar segment.

Today, Honda’s mainstream automobile range is fully electrified. Models like the Jazz, Civic, HR-V, ZR-V, and CR-V come standard with e:HEV powertrains. These advanced systems seamlessly shift between EV, hybrid, and engine drive modes without driver input, combining ease of use, a rewarding driving experience, and competitive efficiency and emissions.

The Prelude Concept’s debut and the celebration of 25 years of hybrid innovation highlight Honda’s ongoing commitment to electrification and its vision for a sustainable, electrified future in Europe.

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