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2026 Sony-Honda Afeela EV: A new blast of entertainment

2026 Sony-Honda Afeela EV: Sony showed the latest version of its Afeela electric concept car at CES 2024, and it looks completely entertainment-focused. When a concept car is driven on stage with a PlayStation 5 controller, it’s easy to understand the makers’ focus.

This flashy vehicle is not only a cool demo of Sony’s future in-car infotainment systems, but Sony has co-developed it with Honda. According to the joint project, Sony Honda Mobility, production of the Afeela EV will begin in 2025 and will be available for the 2026 model year. The car will be made in the United States, but it is not yet confirmed whether the Afeela will be part of the revised federal tax credit.

Sony-Honda Afeela EV 2026 All Details

Sony Honda Mobility has shown the Afeela before, but now it seems to be close to production. The rearview cameras in the 2023 version have now been replaced with regular mirrors. The interior is infotainment-focused, which Sony has further specified about the car.

At CES, Sony executives highlighted its high-tech features, artificial intelligence, and Afeela’s potential in creating a platform for entertainment, gaming, and other apps. Sony wants to help third-party app developers develop new and interesting apps for Afeela’s expansive infotainment system.

The car’s interior remains unchanged compared to the previous Afeela concept: an expansive screen across the entire width of the dashboard, plus two relatively large seatback screens for rear passengers. The steering wheel is like a yoke — the same shape that Tesla made optional on some of its models — but it is easier to see from the dashboard screen.

Noise-canceling technology and in-seat speakers help the Afeela’s occupants fully immerse themselves in music, movies, or games. The user interface comes with colorful blocks, inspired by Sony’s ongoing partnership with Microsoft, and you can use your PS5 controller for in-car games. There is also another customizable screen on the front of the car, and the base screen is slightly smaller.

The car’s tech doesn’t just end with features like smart TV. According to Izumi Kawanishi, President and COO of Sony Honda Mobility, the Afeela will use lidar and radar sensors to collect data about its surroundings. Its driver-assistance systems will use neural networks (yes, this is another AI-heavy concept from CES 2024) so that Afeela can continuously improve its ability to recognize objects or pedestrians on the road. Currently, Afeela comes with Level 2 driver-assist tech, but the company aims to take it to Level 3.

Another interesting feature of Afeela’s ADAS is that when enabled, the graphics displayed on the car’s large interior screens are generated with Unreal Engine 5 — a graphics engine commonly used for video games. It’s hot. Afeela can create augmented reality in real-time, by marking points of interest or enabling augmented reality games.

Afeela also uses generative AI for its agent, which Sony Honda Mobility developed with Microsoft. To keep Personal Agent intact, Microsoft Vice President of Data and Digital Applications Product Marketing, Jessica Hawk, assured the CES audience that Personal Agent will use Microsoft Azure AI’s Content Safety Service, which protects AI-based services -Putting avoids giving outputs.

It is difficult to say whether everything will be ready for 2025 or not. The Afeela will support over-the-air updates, but Kawanishi confirmed to The Verge that the AI that will power Personal Agent and Level 3 autonomous capabilities has not been finalized yet.

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