2026 Afeela Sedan.

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I recently got invited to discover the new Afeela EV sedan in person. The car I saw was of course a prototype since the production model is expected in the spring of 2026, although pre-orders will be open next year.

Afeela is a new company from Honda and Sony. Although the car will not be sold at Honda dealers, is scheduled to be built in the US by Honda. The prototype was unveiled a year ago. An earlier prototype was unveiled under the Sony brand back in 2020.

The car I saw looked very much like a production car and I expect the production version to look very similar. Which is just OK. The new sedan looks clean and rather modern, but is also very similar to many, many new Chinese EVs currently on sale or coming out soon. I’m afraid the Afeela design might not look that fresh by the time it comes out.

The front end has a very gimmicky screen that can be configured to pretty much whatever you want, even from your phone. I can only imagine what people will do with this… And the cost of the slightest fender bender could be terrible news.

Inside, the Afeela is very roomy and even in prototype form, very well-finished and upscale. This will not be a Model 3 competitor, although it is a bit shorter than a Model S.

The doors on the prototype open at the push of a button, just like modern Rolls Royce. But also, just like a few other Chinese EVs, like the new Zeekr 007. Inside, you are greeted by a giant display covering the whole length of the dashboard. Again, like a few Chinese EVs available today, and even the new Lincoln Nautilus. The different screens inside the display can be configured any way you want. Map, movies, video games, and many other apps.

The car has video side mirrors. Although these aren’t legal in the US, the Afeela will also come with regular mirrors, allowing for the video units to be sold in the US. That means, 2 more screens on each side of the giant one…

The Afeela is a fastback but also a proper hatchback, which is great news.

The Afeela is quite puzzling, which I think is the result of a confused company. It doesn’t seem to know what to do to attract consumers. It is throwing at you everything it can think of. It wants you to be able to do anything you want in your car.

The Tesla interiors are very simple, while this seems all over the place and at the same time is trying to convey a quiet Zen feeling. The outside front screen is a perfect example of something no one needs or even wants.

All the “cool ” features displayed, like the automatic doors, the yoke steering wheel, the super widescreen, the glass roof, etc… All of these are actually available in other cars. And again, especially in China.

Maybe the Afeela wants to be the one bringing these features to the US without being a Chinese car. But the real thing is still 2 years away. The car’s design is still a bit similar to the Sony prototype we saw 4 years ago, and again, very similar to current Chinese electric sedans.

Of course, we will have to wait and see the actual production model to pass judgment on the new Afeela. Creating a new unknown brand is just a very strange decision. Especially from 2 brands that are already widely respected around the world like Sony and Honda. This should really have been a Honda or a Sony.

Maybe this will also change. A lot can happen in 2 years. I just hope the Afeela sedan doesn’t end up being seen as last year’s gimmick by the time it comes out…

Conversation 6 comments

  1. You constantly mention Chinese cars. Do you think the average American car buyer knows anything about any Chinese car?? Personally, by mentioning and giving importance to Chinese cars, you are opening the door for the end of the American auto industry. If the flood gates open and Chinese cars go on sale in the US, do you really think Ford or GM will survive?

  2. 100% agree. This is a misstep from Honda. Its an advantage for Sony, since they had no feasible entry to the car market for their motoring aspirations. While I like the design, in two years its going to look like the 8th gen Civic – modern for a point in time. But that time is past. And the recessed door handles in some EVs are already plaguing their owners in cold weather. Can you imagine NO handles? What happens if the battery is low or the car bricks? You wont be able to get in or out. Stupid, Honda. Stupid.

  3. I mention Chinese cars because I mention all cars.
    China is the eworld’s largest market and American manufacturers are spending billions trying to compete in China. They are already more involved over there than in the US.
    Trying to pretend they don’t exist is a huge mistake.
    That’s what Detroit did in the 70’s with Japanese imports.

  4. This should be implemented into their up-market Honda and Acura vehicles. Separating it is just a vanity issue for Sony. New systems tech into the Honda brand, and expanded sensor and imaging capabilities into Acura. But they should try it in a larger model at Acura, reviving the Legend name. If you’ve seen what MercedesBenz has done with the S-class’s heads-up displays, that would be a good use in a truly forward-looking PHEV performance-luxury car at Acura.

  5. I feel…uh…like my Playstation has more exciting styling. Actually, I feel…uh…like the box my Playstation came in has more exciting styling.

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