Honda Efficiently Names Its New Electric Car with Just One Letter

We’ve been covering Honda’s charming little battery-electric city car since they first showed it in 2017, and even if we’re saddened there are no plans to bring it to America, it’s exciting to know that the production version is actually happening, and it even now has an official name: e.

Just “e.”

I’m assuming that name is likely pronounced “Schwa Rotated 180 Degrees,” though I suppose it’s possible it’s pronounced “e,” most likely as a tribute to poet e.e. cummings, and his unmistakable poem Busy Monster, which begins:

pity this busy monster, manunkind,

not. Progress is a comfortable disease:

your victim (death and life safely beyond)

...though I suppose there’s an off chance it’s referencing that mysterious aether we call “electricity,” which you may be familiar with from your experiments with Leyden Jars and severed frog limbs.

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Honda UK made the official announcement earlier today, via Twitter:

You know, we really shouldn’t be too surprised by the name; the prototypes carried that name, too, after all:

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Anyway, there’s a good solid tradition of cars being named after letters, though they’re usually paired with a word like “model.” Think Ford’s T and A or Tesla’s S and X and Y. There’s also Panhard’s Dyna Z, Datsun’s Z-cars, and, perhaps most importantly, Honda’s other foray into single-letter naming, the Honda Z.

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That one even feels like a direct ancestor to the Honda e.

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Jason Torchinsky

Senior Editor, Jalopnik • Running: 1973 VW Beetle, 2006 Scion xB, 1990 Nissan Pao, 1991 Yugo GV Plus • Not-so-running: 1973 Reliant Scimitar, 1977 Dodge Tioga RV (also, buy my book!)