November 20, 2013
Honda introduces micro-sized dual-seater EV, MC-Beta, ahead of Tokyo Motor Show
It might look strikingly similar to Renault Twizy, but it’s the new micro-sized EV named ‘MC-Beta’ unveiled today by Honda Motor Co., Ltd. Announced as a concept back in 2010, a drivable prototype version of the MC last shown off last year. The cute little short-distance commuter measures 2495 × 1280 × 1545mm (L × W × H) and is powered by an electric motor that produces 11kW of peak power. Despite the small size and light weight construction, the MC-Beta isn’t very fast; Honda claims that it has a top speed of 70Km/h and has a range of 80km. The seating arrangement is also very similar to the Twizy with tandem seats and a central driving position.
The lack of power is more than compensated with some cutting edge technology fitted into the MC-Beta by Honda. It comes with semi-autonomous driving technology and the vehicle can be remotely operated using a tablet. The tablet slots into the dashboard, when inside the car, and takes care of the rest of the functions. It can also follow the car ahead automatically which not only reduces the chances of accident but improve range.
For the EV, an AC100V/AC200V charging system has been adopted and the lithium-ion battery on the EV takes under 3 hours to charge. Also what’s interesting is, the MC-Beta falls into motorcycle category in Europe as it weighs below 400kg – without the battery – and has a power output below 15kW. Honda plans to introduce the MC-Beta within 5 years as there is a growing demand of EVs.