A Honda spokesman said the Tokyo-based company has begun to develop electric vehicles, but has not decided on a release date. He declined to be named, citing company policy.
Honda released its new Insight earlier this year, billing it as the cheapest gas-electric hybrid on the market, to compete with Toyota Motor Corp.’s top-selling Prius.
Among its rivals, Nissan Motor Co. is set to begin selling its Leaf electric car hatchback in the U.S., Europe and Japan next year. Toyota Motor Corp. has said it plans to launch electric vehicles by 2012.
In June, Mitsubishi Motors Corp., launched its own electric vehicle, the 4.59 million yen ($48,300) i-MiEV. Ford’s first battery electric vehicle, the Transit Connect commercial van, is to be available next year, while General Motors is set to release its Chevrolet Volt next year, a rechargeable electric car.
The Obama administration in June said Ford, Nissan and Tesla Motors Inc. would be the first three beneficiaries of a $25 billion fund to develop fuel-efficient vehicles.