Honda’s Sport EV concept
Our reporters empty their notebooks to round up this week’s gossip from across the automotive industry
This week’s snippets of automotive news cover the entire industry, from the designer of Honda’s Sports EV to the Daihatsu Compagno, from Mazda‘s lack of faith in EVs and to Japanese firms fearing brexit.
The young designer of the Honda Sports EV:
Honda’s Sports EV concept was penned by Makoto Harada, who had his design chosen ahead of 150 other submissions from the car maker’s design studios around the world. Harada is a young designer whose major work to date has been as one of the exterior designers on the current Civic. A man of clear talent and, seemingly, taste: he’s an Autocar subscriber…
Daihatsu earned praise for its reinvention of the Compagno, but it was the inclusion of an original example from 1963 alongside it on the stand that drew most plaudits. The original Compagno broke cover as a concept car at the 1961 Tokyo show and was on sale in various forms until 1970, despite being regarded as out of date on its launch because of its ladder chassis.
Mazda to focus on petrol engines, for now:
Mazda won’t be putting all of its faith in electric vehicles, even though it has one coming in 2019. Mazda engine boss Mitsuo Hitomi told Autocar: “I don’t think EVs will make any big contribution to the environment and I don’t think that customers will accept EVs.” The company is focusing on its Spark Controlled Compression Ignition (SCCI) engine, which the firm says combines the economy and torque of a diesel with the lower emissions of a petrol.
Japanese car firms are anxious about Brexit. Mazda UK boss Jeremy Thomson, referring to a 15% decrease in year-to-date sales, said he’s “very keen that the UK government forms a free trade agreement with Japan” to ensure good business post-Brexit.