May 26, 2024

Honda is typically very good at naming cars. Look at the Civic, Accord, Beat, Prelude, and Odyssey. These are all memorable names for cars that fit their own individual product. A good history does not guarantee good future results, and the brand’s choice to sell a car called “e:Ny1” in Europe and China seemed confounding at the time. Honda has apparently noticed, because the name is reportedly already in line for replacement.

e:Ny1 may seem like a clever play on “Anyone,” but it is actually a confusing combination of letters and numbers just meant to indicate an electric (e:N) car produced in partnership

According to a report from Autocar, the brand is dropping the e:N prefix on all of its Chinese-market EVs going forward because customers “just can’t pronounce it.” The new system would switch to a more straightforward naming convention of a single letter and a single number, making the e:Ny1 a simple Y1. Unfortunately for customers, this decision was made after the launch of a car called e:NS2.

Honda refers to its GM Ultium-based American EV as the Prologue, a simple and memorable name that makes sense as the name of an electric SUV. American buyers have mercifully been spared from the e:N naming convention, and the new naming rules mean that the market should still be spared if cars based on this architecture arrive on the American market in the future.

The change is good news for Chinese and European Honda buyers, but the era of confusing EV names is far from over. Jaguar still offers a gas-powered E-Pace and an electric I-Pace at the same time, Mercedes still sells a sedan called the EQS and an SUV called the EQS SUV side by side, and Toyota still sells a car called the bZ4X.

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