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Honda has revealed some official details on its upcoming EV, the Honda e. Order books for the compact electric car are already open, ahead of a production car debut later this year and first deliveries in 2020.

The Honda e is the first Honda to be built on a dedicated EV platform, designed from the ground up “to deliver excellent Honda driving dynamics” and “to offer a rewarding, responsive driving experience.” The water-cooled 35.5 kWh lithium-ion battery is positioned on the floor of the car, centrally within its wheelbase. This contributes to a low centre of gravity and 50:50 weight distribution.

Of course, those attributes will be good for dynamics. Keen drivers would also be happy to know that the Honda e is rear-wheel-drive, enabling steering precision even during high acceleration, Honda says. The four-wheel independent suspension is engineered to offer stability in all conditions, a smooth ride and responsive handling. Certain suspension components are made from forged aluminium to reduce weight.

All the above, when combined with the Honda e’s small footprint and short overhangs, makes city driving enjoyable and tight manoeuvres in urban environments effortless, the Japanese carmaker says.

Honda’s upcoming EV can be charged using either a Type 2 AC connection or a CCS2 DC rapid charger, which is a more universal choice compared to the CHAdeMO method Japanese EVs usually prefer. Fitting, since the Honda e is set to be a global car and will be marketed in Europe as well. DC rapid charging will provide 80% charge in 30 minutes.

The central charging port is on the bonnet, just above the front Honda logo and it includes at-a-glance LED indication of charging status, visible through a glass panel. Displays on the dual touchscreens inside the car present the current level of battery charge, while a drivetrain graphic charts the current power flow and the regeneration and recharging status.

The quoted range of “over 200 km” doesn’t sound like much in today’s landscape, but should be still adequate as an urban runabout. For context, the larger Hyundai Kona Electric comes with two powertrain options – a 39.2 kWh version with a 300 km range and a long-range 64 kWh model with up to 470 km of range.

The modern yet retro-looking Honda e is a key part of the brand’s commitment to feature electrified technology in 100% of its European sales by 2025. The company has already received 31,000 expressions of interest in the continent. Cute, right?

GALLERY: Honda e Prototype at Geneva 2019