Honda Clarity Fuel Cell Sedan Now Available In Japan – Sales Target Set At 200 Units

1 year ago by Mark Kane 43

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell

Honda Smart Hydrogen Station

Honda Smart Hydrogen Station

Honda has begun sales of its hydrogen fuel cell model Clarity Fuel Cell in Japan(see presentation in Tokyo from 2015), but the rollout is very conservative to say the least, with only 200 units planned in the first year.

Moreover, the Japanese company will also focus on local government bodies or businesses:

“For the first year of the Clarity Fuel Cell launch in Japan, Honda will focus on lease sales mainly to local government bodies or businesses Honda has already been working with for the popularization of FCVs. During this period, Honda will collect information about the in-market use of the Clarity Fuel Cell as well as the external power output device and gather diverse opinions and requests from customers and other relevant organizations, and then later begin sales to individual customers.”

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell & Power Exporter 9000

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell & Power Exporter 9000

Range of the Clarity Fuel Cell stand at 750 km (466 miles) under JC08 standards, while EPA rating is expected at some 480 km (300 miles).

Refueling the high-pressure hydrogen storage tank to 70 MPa takes approximately three minutes.

The price in Japan starts at 7,660,000 yen ($67,300).

On sale will be also the portable external power output device – Power Exporter 9000, which enables powering of auxillary electric appliances using CHAdeMO inlet. The cost however is quite prohibitive for such a lucuty at 1,180,000 yen (nearly $10,400).

Unlike the Toyota Mirai, Honda Clarity Fuel Cell is five seat sedan – the first one in production.

Honda remain bullish on its “forthcoming hydrogen energy society“:

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell

“Honda will begin with small-volume production at the Production Supervisory Unit and Powertrain Production Supervisory Unit (located in Takanezawa-machi, Shioya-gun, Tochigi, Japan.), eventually expanding production volume. Moreover, Honda is planning to introduce the Clarity Fuel Cell to Europe and the U.S. before the end of 2016.

Honda was one of the first automakers to begin focusing attention on hydrogen as a possible solution for issues such as global warming and depletion of fossil fuels. Honda has been positioning the FCV, which emits only water, as the ultimate environmentally responsible vehicle and has taken a proactive approach to the research and development of FCVs since the late 1980s.

In 2002, the Honda FCX became the first fuel cell vehicle in the world to be certified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the California Air Resources Board (CARB). With these certifications, Honda began sales of the Honda FCX in Japan and the U.S. In 2008, Honda became the first automaker to begin sales of the FCX Clarity, which featured an innovative sedan-type package and unprecedented driving experience. The all-new Clarity Fuel Cell was developed based on various data related to the ease of use and driving performance of these previous Honda FCVs.

With the goal to make a contribution to the forthcoming hydrogen energy society and to realize the joy and freedom of mobility and a sustainable society where people can enjoy life, Honda will continue taking on new challenges in the area of hydrogen technologies including the Smart Hydrogen Station, FCVs and external power output devices under the concept of “generate, use and get connected.””

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell – Key specifications

Number of occupants 5
Powertrain Motor Max. output 130 kW/4,501-9,028 rpm [Max rpm: 13,000 rpm]
Max. torque 300 N・m/0-3,500 rpm
Type AC synchronous motor
Fuel cell stack Max. output 103 kW
Type Polymer electrolyte fuel cell (PEFC)
Drive battery Type Lithium-ion battery
Fuel/tank Fuel type compressed hydrogen
Tank capacity 141 L (front: 24 L/ rear: 117 L)
Nominal pressure 70 MPa
Vehicle size (length x width x height) 4,915 mm x 1,875 mm x 1,480 mm
Vehicle weight 1,890 kg
Price including consumption tax*6 (for reference) 7,660,000 yen

○Body color (total 3 colors)*7
‐Premium Brilliant Garnet Metallic (Roof color: Black / Interior color: Platinum Gray)
‐White Orchid Pearl (Roof color: Black / Interior color: Platinum Gray)
‐Crystal Black Pearl (Interior color: Platinum Gray)

Power Exporter 9000 – Key specifications

Rated output 9 kVA
Output voltage/output frequency AC100・200 V (single-phase three-wire system)
/50/60 Hz (frequency switching system)
Power conversion Inverter
Weight 50.8 kg
Overall length x width x height 755 mm×387 mm×438 mm
Output terminal 100 V×6 terminals /200 V x 1 terminal
Applicable standard V2L Guideline DC 2.1
Price including consumption tax*8
(for reference)
1,180,000 yen

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43 responses to "Honda Clarity Fuel Cell Sedan Now Available In Japan – Sales Target Set At 200 Units"

  1. sveno says:

    I feel sad that this has to exist.

    1. Michel says:

      Totally approve, we d’ont need this in our world. Bev is much more simpler.

    2. Alpha777 says:

      The Plugin should have been released first, it’s got far more sales potential then this obvious bomb on wheels.

      And why isn’t the Fit EV sold NATIONALLY, and UPGRADED.
      Honda can’t sign a contract with LG Chem, like every other manufacturer???

      Why isn’t there a more advanced Insight.

      Honda Mgmt leaves a lot to be desired.

  2. Rick Bronson says:

    Honda has made a 5 seater sedan which is slightly bigger and priced it at $67,000 which is $10,000 more than Toyota Mirai.

    And they are going to sell only 200 units in the 1st year. Actually they are only leasing it to govenment agencies.

    So why are they remaining bullish. Actually its foolish.
    Tesla has sold 500 units of more fantastic spacious sporty Model-X in USA alone last month. And the electric charger is available in more than 30,000 locations in USA and 40,000 locations in Japan.

    Honda is just playing gimmick. They don’t even want to sell Hybrids. Why would they sell Fuel Cell Vehicles.

  3. Michel says:

    Honda is sleeping, one of the first for hybrid and probably the last with Toyota for BEV

  4. Dave says:

    Honda why are you bothering with this complete waste of time and profits? Please stop NOW…

    1. For context … LEAF sales in Japan for January were 2503 and 2819 in February (2016). This means a volume of 200 LEAFs is sold every ~3 days vs. ____ days for 200 Honda’s FCVs.

  5. I liked the Earlier renditions of this car, for styling, that I saw in the Detroit Auto Show! If it looks better, I Think the Clarity should be Bought, and the H2 Tanks and Fuel Cell and drive train Removed, and the whole car converted to Battery Power – and then presented to the Press and Public at the Next Auto Show! Any Takers on this idea?

    I think about $150,000 to $200,000 should be all one needs! $67,300 for the Car, maybe $10,000 for the removal and clean up of the current drive line, H2, Fuel Cell, Motor Drive, etc! The Rest for the Engineering and first Design – maybe in a Mule, and then at least one in the car itself!

    Give it an EPA Range Capable of 350 Miles and you could show how much Better the Battery EV is over the Fuel Cell EV!

  6. Roy LeMeur says:

    Only $10K for an inverter? I’ll take two!

  7. Philip d says:

    That’s some funky theater seating arrangement. I suppose if it was a convertible then that configuration would come in handy at the drive-in.

    Also here is a better cut-away that shows how honkin big that tank is in the back.

    If you imagine a cover over the tank it will barely leave enough cargo room to lay down one thin suitcase flat.

    1. Alpha777 says:

      Look at the size of that tank.
      Terrorists going to love this vehicle.

  8. jerryd says:

    40 yrs of them building FCV’s and they can still only come up with 200 to sell.
    But then who is going to buy a car that takes $14/gal/kg fuel?

    1. Alpha777 says:

      CARB, bribed by industry, is allowing these to get environmental credits. Don’t know how that’s justified as the fuel source is STILL CARBON.

      1. Alpha777 says:

        A one who doesn’t believe satan walks the earth, this project makes me doubt.

  9. Philip d says:

    4,166 lbs. with a max drivetrain output of 138 hp. Yikes.

    1. mustang_sallad says:

      To be fair, the battery probably gives enough of a buffer such that the motor can run at it’s full 130kW rating for acceleration, but your point remains: nobody’s going to be writing home about this car or the Mirai and praising the driving dynamics.

      How are these things going to take off without having the extremely positive reviews from early adopters like we see with EVs?

      1. Philip d says:

        Yeah, HFCVs don’t have any advantages over gas cars that they can market.

        EVs have many advantages. Many could be argued against but EVs at least have some indisputable advantages from the beginning that can be marketed such as lower fuel and operation costs.

        For HFCVs fueling costs are actually in the negative column. And as far as performance and driving dynamics where is the Model S or even the i3 of HFCVs? There aren’t any for a reason.

        1. zzzzzzzzzz says:

          There aren’t any because this technology is less developed so far. But as you can see, fuel cell cars are starting to appear despite all the Musk troll crowd wishes to the contrary. It is more complex, but it is more promising than just slapping a battery in a car and expecting somebody else will magically take care about the fossil fuel dependent electric grid.

          Either Honda Clarity or Mirai lease with fuel included is around $500/mo plus 3000+ downpayment. Compare it to Model S lease at around $1000/mo plus 7000 downpayment. No, don’t tell me about some scam $500/mo Tesla leases that include “savings” for $4/gal gas or some fantasy “business tax savings”.

          1. BraveLilToaster says:

            “but it is more promising than just slapping a battery in a car and expecting somebody else will magically take care about the fossil fuel dependent electric grid.”

            Hehe. You think that hydrogen just comes out of thin air, don’t you?

            It comes from one of two places: the magic fantasy world where you can “just split water with electricity”, which uses, um, electricity from the, how did you put it again?

            “the fossil fuel dependent electric grid”.

            And it does it using about 66% more electricity than charging a battery. So this becomes defensible because…?

            OR! Or, it can come from natural gas! In which case you use, um, a fossil fuel, and use it to replace, um, fossil fuels. All the emissions, and way higher cost, both in the initial purchase price and the cost of fuel (refined hydrogen costing about 8x more than raw natural gas, of course).

            Congratulations to Honda for producing a far less efficient version of the 2011 Nissan Leaf, for way more money, for which fuel costs twice what gasoline would.

            But don’t forget! 2 minute recharge time! Zero emissions!

  10. G2 says:

    Great car…(16 years too late).

    1. Alpha777 says:

      Great concept in 1950, before anyone knew of climate change.

  11. John says:

    Safe or not, people are going to feel uneasy about leaning on a giant high pressure tank.

    I guess at first they felt uneasy about giant batteries too, but still…

  12. JimGord says:

    The truth about Hydrogen cars:

    Honda is stuck inside their hydrogen bubble

  13. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

    How can something be both sad and hilarious at the same time?

    It’s sad to see Honda wasting all that money tooling up to produce a car model for which they only plan to make 200 in the first model year; a car using dead-end technology, obsolete even before it’s produced.

    It’s hilarious to see the extreme discrepancy between the amount of hype auto makers are using to promote “fool cell” vehicles… and the reality, which is that there’s almost no market for them at all. This is a reality which the auto makers perfectly well; that’s why they’re making so very few “fool cell” cars.

    Altho to be fair to Honda, the level of hype coming from them about FCEVs is vastly less than the mountains of manure being shoveled out by Toyota’s marketing department!

    They say “A mind is a terrible thing to waste.” Even more so for the efforts of whole teams of auto designers and engineers. There’s no hilarity there at all, just sadness.

    1. Alpha777 says:

      What we’re really seeing is, it’s not really that expensive to develop a new concept.

      Because the only payback is CARB credits.
      And that seems to be sufficient for Honda to do this development.

      1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

        I think there is a lot of political pressure from the Japanese government for their auto makers to support the “hydrogen highway”. So I think that’s one reason why Japanese auto makers like Toyota and Honda have started mass producing* FCEVs, altho only in very low numbers.

        *For some value of “mass producing”. I understand that Toyota’s fuel cell stacks require some hand assembly. Dunno about Honda.

  14. Alex says:

    Huge effort for couple cars.

  15. Neil says:

    Can hydrogen be made from sunshine, that’s how I charge my car and motorcycle

    1. Elroy says:

      Yes, the power from sunshine can power hydrogen generating stations, just not very efficiently. The biggest advantages of H2 are range and quick refilling in minutes. The exact same things which are the biggest disadvantages with BEVs.

      1. sven says:

        The efficiency of making hydrogen from water electrolysis is significantly improving. Researchers have recently doubled the efficiency of making hydrogen by water electrolysis!!! Let’s hope they can commercialize the process at a low cost.

        http://aktuell.ruhr-uni-bochum.de/pm2016/pm00033.html.en

        1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

          sven said:

          “The efficiency of making hydrogen from water electrolysis is significantly improving. Researchers have recently doubled the efficiency of making hydrogen by water electrolysis!!!”

          So… if the typical efficiency for industrial scale electrolysis is 60-70%, then you say they’ve doubled that to 120-140%? Gosh, I didn’t realize that it was possible to have better than 100% energy efficiency. Who should we congratulate for inventing perpetual motion? [/snark]

          Please choose your words more carefully on technical subjects, sven. Even if you could halve the energy inefficiency involved in generating hydrogen via electrolysis — and I don’t think that’s physically possible — that’s not the equivalent of doubling energy efficiency.

          And we regularly see claims of an astounding improvement in reducing the inefficiency of generating hydrogen via electrolysis. Sadly, such claims never turn out to have any substance to them.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electrolysis_of_water#Efficiency

          1. sven says:

            I’ll choose my words very carefully.

            Go away troll. I’m not feeding you any more.

  16. Philip d says:

    The range at this point isn’t much different if you compare the upper end range of available production cars for EVs and HFCVs. The Model S 90D is pushing 300 miles. On the EPA cycle the Clarity will be around 350.

    And sure you could argue that the Mirai and Clarity are less expensive than the S but it is unlikely if you look at real costs beyond amortization and subsidizing costs. Even if the Clarity and Mirai were scaled up to the exact same production numbers as Tesla they would still probably cost more since neither Honda or Toyota has found an affordable way to mass produce the fuel cells on an assembly line. They are still assembled painstakingly by hand.

    In 5-10 more years there will be no more range difference. Batteries are steadily and predictably increasing in energy density while 10,000 psi hydrogen tanks are limited by physics and are already the size that they can be. Slightly more efficient fuel cells could increase range by some as well as lighter structural materials but the later would equally benefit EVs.

    Fueling time is still an advantage but that is the only advantage out of a really long list. And that advantage is only realized if the infrastructure is there which it isn’t now. So it’s not really an advantage.

    1. sven says:

      Phillip D said:
      “Even if the Clarity and Mirai were scaled up to the exact same production numbers as Tesla they would still probably cost more since neither Honda or Toyota has found an affordable way to mass produce the fuel cells on an assembly line. They are still assembled painstakingly by hand.”

      Fuel cell tech is advancing by leaps and bounds, especially with regards to distributed power generation. Ceres Power has recently developed a high-speed, high-volume automated production line producing fuel cells. They are ceramic on a steel base and run on natural gas. It’s only a matter of time until some company does the same for PEM hydrogen fuel cells.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QfOG6bAuubs

      https://www.gov.uk/government/case-studies/ceres-power-fuel-cell-business-makes-manufacturing-breakthrough

      1. sven says:

        If you prefer mutton chops with your fuel cells, then this is the video for you:

        https://vimeo.com/96067130

        http://cerespower.com/technology/why-the-steel-cell-is-unique

      2. Philip d says:

        “It’s only a matter of time until some company does the same for PEM hydrogen fuel cells.”

        Speculation. The same could be said for the weekly announced huge possible breakthroughs in battery tech. But battery tech can still continue to march forward without hypothetical big breakthroughs.

        1. sven says:

          But this is just manufacturing tech that they’re trying to automate, instead of making them by hand. It’s not the same on the same level of difficulty as looking for breakthrough in developing a new catalyst, or creating a new materiay/alloy, or developing a new chemical process, etc.

      3. Rick Danger says:

        You fail to mention that what makes the Ceres fuel cell so unique “is the fact that it operates at temperatures of 500-600 °C.”
        That’s like 1000°F. Don’t think those will be going into any cars anytime soon.
        Their manufacture appears to have few similarities with the type of hydrogen fool cell they put in cars.
        For a “technology agnostic” you certainly try to push hydrogen a lot. Don’t think we haven’t noticed.

        1. zzzzzzzzzz says:

          I don’t think this type of fuel cells is for cars, but ICE can reach higher temperature inside cylinder.

          Fuel cell backup power systems are already widely used commercially in data centers, telecoms, TV studios, everywhere when high power is needed. They are very compact even with reformer included. So far the cost is a bit more than typical grid power cost, but it is likely it will go down.

          As for the cars, ultimately it will be competition by price when production will be scaled up. Driving with 1000+ pound battery all the time isn’t cheap.

    2. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

      Philip d said:

      “…you could argue that the Mirai and Clarity are less expensive than the S but it is unlikely if you look at real costs beyond amortization and subsidizing costs.”

      The reason why “fool cell” cars will forever remain impractical isn’t because of the cost of making them. Costs for the fuel cell stacks themselves have come down considerably over the past several years, and they almost certainly will continue to drop.

      The reason why “fool cell” cars will forever remain impractical is because they use hydrogen as a fuel. Now, if some other fuel could be used, they might become practical someday. Unfortunately, onboard reformation of other fuels into hydrogen makes FCEVs even less energy-efficient than they already are, plus it eliminates the advantage of no direct emissions of pollution by the vehicle.

      1. sven says:

        Only juveniles constantly use the term “fool cell” in a conversation among adults. Jerk.

  17. Speculawyer says:

    You would think that the near complete lack of interest in these vehicles by consumers would cause them to question their plans.

    But they seem to be intent on building these things even if no one buys them.