LA Auto Show: Honda Accord And Civic Take Center Stage, But EV-STER Steals The Show


I’m sorry, I can’t hear you talking about how efficient, reliable and safe your Accords and Civics are over the deafening hotness of this concept car you’ll probably never bring to market.  No Honda EV-STER for you, America!

Honda employs designers, so why don’t they let them do any actual design work on the cars they actually sell? Granted, most people have no taste or sense of style, but do their cars actually have to reflect this? Working in the world of high-end fashion design most of my career, with some stints in the mass market, I know it doesn’t cost any more to simply finesse the silhouette to make it more attractive, sexier.

Having friends who play with carbon fiber and sheet metal I know the same goes for these materials. Clearly Honda’s designers know how to design sexy cars, as evinced this season with the EV-Ster (above) which would do a stellar job of filling the void left by the discontinued Tesla roadster. Honda’s other fun little car, the S2000 was so fun to drive I’ve met fellow motorcycle racers who loved it so much they were even willing to give up their street bike.

So while Honda tells us the Civic is fun to drive, this motorcyclist is skeptical. Or was it the Accord? They’re interchangeable to me like their Goldwing and CBR1000RR are to most of you.

photo courtesy of Katherine Tessier

Having had the pleasure of giving the Honda Fit EV a proper test drive, I know they know how to make cars that are fun to drive. And the Fit at least has some personality. But I think it’s time the major OEM’s, especially Honda, take note of the rapid sales growth of the more stylish cars coming to the market like the Fiat 500 and the Mini. Honda proudly displayed this wall of trophies, none of which are in design.

So, about that Accord Plug-in Hybrid… For Model Year 2014, Honda has announced a PHEV Accord with 115MPGe, which is higher than any in the mid-size class. The Accord PHEV will go on sale in New York and California January 15th with an MSRP of  $39,780.That’s before tax incentives.

The Accord has 47/46/46 mpg (city/hwy/combined) and is the first production car in America to meet the more stringent new LEV3/SULEV20 emissions standard. It will also qualify for single-occupant carpool-lane access in California. But it most certainly won’t get you laid. Even if you’re Brad Pitt.


About the Author

Susanna is passionate about anything fast and electric. As long as it's only got two wheels. She covers electric motorcycle racing events, test rides electric motorcycles, and interviews industry leaders. Occasionally she deigns to cover automobile events in Los Angeles for us as well. However, she dreams of a day when Los Angeles' streets resemble the two-wheeled paradise she discovered living in Barcelona and will not rest until she's converted the masses to two-wheeled bliss.
  • Burlina Black

    The EV-STER is an exciting new concept electric sports car unveiled at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show by Honda Motor Company. It is a two-seater with a carbon fiber body to reduce weight. The EV-STER is equipped with a lithium-ion battery and has an output of 78 horsepower. Honda says it sprints from zero to 37 mph in 5.0 seconds and has a range of about 99 miles. Its styling takes cues from the CR-Z and S2000 but the EV-STER is significantly smaller than those cars, it rides on a 91.5-inch wheelbase and is 12 feet long. Honda plans to offer the production version of the car with either a gasoline engine or as a pure electric vehicle. With the pure electric drivetrain, this show car will be more suited to top-down fun in the city than the on the open road. The driver uses a yoke to steer rather than a wheel, and the cockpit has displays geared toward the electric power train. The instrument panel features not only meters, but also the vehicle information display which enables the driver to enjoy driving as well as the network display used for the audio and navigation systems and also for the internet access. See more pictures of the EV-STER in our gallery and discuss this concept car in the forum.

    • It’s a successor to the 1980’s Beat. The last JDM car overseen by Soichiro Honda before his death.

  • Jason Carpp

    I remember when the Honda Fit first hit the USA market. I liked its styling. I was like “this is what Honda should’ve done with the Civic. In most countries, the Honda Civic is available in four door hatchback styling, but never here in North America.” When the Fit first debuted, it offered something Honda should’ve offered years ago.

  • Scott

    I’m wonder if the Honda EV could add more batteries to give it double the current range.