Functionality in a car is fundamental and in the history of the automobile there have been styling exercises that have demonstrated this better than others. A good example is the concept car that Honda presented in 2005 at the Tokyo Motor Show. It was called Honda WOW, where WOW stands for Wonderful Open-hearted Wagon.

So it was a people carrier that still leaves us with our mouths agape; even to say, at least quietly, 'wow'. Because it is not only designed for humans, but also, and especially, for transporting pets.

Comfortable first and foremost

In 2005, Honda imagined a car with a very spacious interior that could comfortably transport four people and a few animals. Where? Not in a traditional pet carrier, that enclosed box that the owner places in the passenger compartment, but in a special compartment integrated into the car.

The special compartment for pets, be they dogs or cats, could be placed in front of the rear passengers and, if necessary, removed to allow more legroom for the occupants.

Honda WOW

The interior of the Honda WOW

Alternatively (or additionally, if you were travelling with more than one pet), there was a special pet space integrated into the dashboard. We have no information about the safety of these compartments, because it was a styling exercise, but Honda's imagined solution was very interesting and, even today, makes us reflect on the use of the car and its practicality in everyday life.

Natural materials

Although the Honda WOW is already an old prototype, it would still be relevant today because of its use of materials that we would nowadays consider sustainable.

In fact, the Japanese manufacturer used natural fibres and a lot of wood for the upholstery, even inside the passenger compartment. In addition, the concept car was built with a low centre of gravity to offer a more comfortable ride experience and to allow animals to easily climb aboard.

Finally, the WOW also featured special ventilation and a central aisle that allowed the dogs to move around with agility. If it were a reality, would you buy it?

Gallery: Honda WOW Concept