Honda Commits To 2018 Nationwide Launch For 40-Mile Plug-In Hybrid

2 years ago by Mark Kane 63

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell

2014 Honda Accord PHEV

2014 Honda Accord PHEV

Honda will unveil at the 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show its latest hydrogen fuel cell car – Clarity Fuel Cell, which as we know will spawn PHEV & EV versions.

While the Clarity Fuel Cell will be available in late 2016 (California), we are at the moment more interested in the new PHEV announcement.

The upcoming Honda PHEV is to have 40 miles of all-electric range, three times more than the departing Honda Accord PHEV (13 miles EPA).

40 miles combined with all-electric highway capability would make it the closest competitor to the Chevrolet Volt.

Sales nationwide are expected by 2018, but pilot sales maybe will be launched earlier in some states.

Next-Generation Plug-In Hybrid
In addition, the platform underpinning the Clarity Fuel Cell also serves as the foundation for a next-generation PHEV Honda will launch in the U.S. by 2018. This will be a new volume production vehicle in the Honda line up available nationwide. Featuring a second iteration of the two-motor hybrid plug-in system offering significant improvements in battery capacity and power, the next-generation Honda PHEV will offer more than triple the 13-mile all-electric range of the Accord Plug-In Hybrid Sedan. This range will enable a zero emissions commute for the average American, while increases in power will enable EV operation at highway speeds.”

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell

As the 40-mile plug-in hybrid will be in many ways similar to the Clarity Fuel Cell, the hydrogen version is worth checking out in LA to get some glimpses of what to expect from Honda:

“Honda will begin deliveries of the Clarity Fuel Cell to customers in late 2016 through select fuel cell dealers in select California markets starting in Los Angeles and Orange Counties, the San Francisco Bay Area and Sacramento. Eventually, Honda will expand the scope of its marketing to additional California markets and other states, including the Northeast as hydrogen refueling networks expand. The Clarity Fuel Cell will be priced competitively with others in the segment and Honda expects its new generation of environmental vehicles, which includes the Clarity Fuel Cell, to serve as a new volume pillar for Honda.

“Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are a zero emissions technology that Honda believes in, and has worked to advance for more than 20 years,” said John Mendel, executive vice president, American Honda Motor Co., Inc. “Vehicles like the Clarity Fuel Cell are potential game changers because they offer an uncompromising, zero emissions customer experience, with utility, range and refueling times on par with today’s gasoline-powered cars.”

Customers interested in the Clarity Fuel Cell are encouraged to sign up at http://www.HondaCars.com/Honda-FCV where they can receive more information and sign up for the opportunity to become a future Clarity Fuel Cell customer.”

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63 responses to "Honda Commits To 2018 Nationwide Launch For 40-Mile Plug-In Hybrid"

  1. vdiv says:

    err.\ Dear Honda, how about a 150+ mile all electric car? You can do it! Come on! Come on! We’ll love you more. Much more!

    1. A 40 mile Honda PHEV in 2016 is set to be shadow of 2014 Accord PHEV (low volume, then discontinued) โ€ฆ as a number of BEVs with 150+ miles will arrive in 2018.

      The Chevy, Nissan, Tesla and others will offer ~$35,000 PEVs with 4-5x the electric range. Honda will need to undercut $35,000 or offer more electric range to compete.

      1. Mike616 says:

        Yep, if it takes Honda 3 Years to put out a 40 mile Plugin-hybrid, then the CEO should be FIRED.

      2. mo says:

        So true. The Volt by 2018 will far far surpass a 40mile honda and the Leaf will have an even farther range and have a much much better design than the 1st gen leaf.

  2. David Murray says:

    I wonder if that 40 miles is on the Japanese cycle? So can we expect 30 miles EPA? Still, 30 miles is well within the acceptable range for a PHEV. And I really liked the drivetrain design in the Accord PHEV (except for the size of the battery). So if they are continuing on that 2-motor design, which it sounds like they are, it will be a very capable PHEV. Now, where is Toyota?

    1. Brian says:

      Seeing as Honda themselves have mentioned a 3x improvement over the Accord PHEV, I have to believe that the 40 miles is EPA, or at least close to it.

    2. Just_Chris says:

      Interesting

      2 motor as in AWD, 2 motor LHS, RHS or 2 motor one ICE one motor no connection through the gear box?

  3. Driverguy01 says:

    I don’t love Honda, at all.
    They’ve been dragging their feet while GM and others are making steps and using up their 200k limit for tax rebait. Now Honda is going to come in the market with an EV marketing it with advantages others wont have anymore. That’s just plain wrong as it will penalise pionnering companies. Rules should be adjusted to level the playing field.
    I despise Honda and Toyota for not contributing their knowhow to help humanity clear up our air, i shall never buy their cars, never!

    1. David Murray says:

      Yeah.. this concerns me too. I hope once GM, Tesla, and Nissan have used up their credits, they just pull the plug on the whole thing.

      1. SparkEV says:

        Or continue the thing instead of sunset after 200,000 EV. I mean, it’s lower taxes (right winger love it), better for environment (left wingers love it), fewer bombs to drop with less fund for oil terrorists (everybody love it!)

        1. David Murray says:

          Right wingers would only love it if it were a tax break on big trucks and SUVs. Electric vehicles, not so much.

          1. Open-Mind says:

            I am proof you are wrong. ๐Ÿ™‚

            1. MikeM says:

              While I don’t wish to get all personal . . . You sir, are Anecdotal!

            2. Speculawyer says:

              Well apparently you are an “Open-Minded” right-winger. Those are a rare breed.

              Many of right-wingers are beholden to ideology and dogma whether it makes sense or not. See Ben Carson. Religious dogma has so much control over him that he says illogical things like the pyramids were a granary and evolution was created by the devil.

              1. Richard C says:

                I think there’s entirely too much assumption here. I too am a “right winger”, and I and my family have owned several PHEV and fully EV vehicles over the last 5 years. You don’t have to be a liberal to love the environment, or green vehicles.

              2. Brian says:

                This is part of the problem with modern American politics. Anyone with conservative values and views is grouped with the vocal nut-jobs like Ben Carson. It turns out, it’s largely the politicians who are the extremists – most conservatives are very rational.

                In fact, a true conservative value is putting the needs of others before yourself. One way to do that is to take care of the one earth that we all share. Have a read through Pope Francis’ “Laudato Si” encyclical. Here is a conservative who is teaching that it is our moral imperative to take care of the environment!

                1. Stimpy says:

                  Well put Brian. I’m not in the camp myself but I respect those true conservatives.

                  1. SJC says:

                    I have not seen their definition of conservative. The text definition is status quo. That does not go with innovation.

                    1. Trace says:

                      Anything they like/agree with is conservative. Anything they don’t like is liberal-socialist-communist-terror coddling-French loving-pinko Hippie talk.

                  2. Bill Howland says:

                    I find it interesting that, in his speech at the recent G-20, Putin mentioned several countries are funding “ISIS”. So now we know where they’re getting all their new TOYOTA’s from.

                    It is further interesting that not a single Western News Bureau thought it was an important enough statement to comment on, thereby keeping the topic ‘under the rug’.

                    Surely, if Mr. Putin was mistaken, there’d be all kinds of ‘commentary’ showing what silly views he has. But the obvious truth is that the whole western News Media Cartel (only 6 different organizations all parroting the same statements all the time) KNOW what the truth is.

                    This brings to mind Trump’s

                    1. Bill Howland says:

                      This brings to mind Trump’s Sixty Minutes interview, wherein he stated he finds NEWS MEDIA personel to be the worst people he’s ever met. Says Trump, “they withhold the truth, and will print LIES even while knowing they are LIES”.

                      Now I don’t particularly care for Trump, as he has taken every conceivable stance on every position at one time or another. But as the saying goes, truth is where you find it.

                2. Trace says:

                  I’m sorry, but I’m not buying it.
                  It isn’t liberals who put the Teabaggers in the governor’s mansions and questions The President’s citizenship.

                  1. Open-Mind says:

                    Surveys show that conservatives outnumber liberals/progressives by a pretty large percentage. If you really want EVs to succeed, you should stop trying to insult and alienate the former.

                    1. Trace says:

                      After 40 years of the GOP propagandists making the word “Liberal” an epithet, I don’t doubt it.
                      Broken down issue by issue, Most Americans are flaming socialists. Why should I be nice? There is reliably 27% of the populace that will never vote for a Democrat, because it’s a matter of “conservative” identity for them.

                3. super390 says:

                  The proof is who wins the primaries. When sensible conservative candidates can’t get over 5% support, where are sensible conservative voters? Why do they have to try to make maniacal statements to compete with Trump, Carson and Cruz in order to survive?

                  To put this into perspective, Eisenhower, Nixon, Reagan & George H. W. Bush couldn’t win a GOP primary today. Eisenhower’s GOP supported a 91% top income tax rate. What it means to be “conservative” has been radically altered by radicals, and huge financial benefits have accrued to certain individuals as a result.

      2. Brian says:

        I am of the opinion that there should be a single pool of credits, from which all of the manufacturers “drink”. Say 2 million credits total. The first to the party gets to drink the punch.

        1. Just_Chris says:

          +1 far better system, perhaps they could transition to this as the early adopters reach their limits.

          1. Driverguy01 says:

            Or until an exact % of sales or registrations is reached.

        2. ItsNotAboutTheMoney says:

          But I think that the credit should have begun phasing out sooner, but more slowly.

    2. Mike616 says:

      Yes. Exactly.
      Our sales should go the the REAL Innovators:

      TESLA
      GM’s Volt.
      Nissan’s LEAF
      BMW’s i3.
      Mitsu’s Outlander Hybrid.

      All others have done the absolute MINIMUM and should NOT be rewarded with sales.

  4. kdawg says:

    40 miles was good for 2010, but the bar has been set at 53 now, for PHEVs. I’m wondering if this Honda plugin will have an astronomical price like the first one too.

    1. sven says:

      To be fair to Honda, their PHEV will be one class size bigger than the Volt.

    2. Brian says:

      So because they cannot meet or beat the market leader, they should not even try? I strongly disagree. Just like first-gen Volt owners, drivers will find that 40 miles covers 75-80% of their driving. And it will leave them begging for even more.

      1. kdawg says:

        I don’t recall saying they shouldn’t try.

        1. Brian says:

          To say that the Volt sets the bar is to say that everyone is expected to meet or exceed their performance in order to play.

          1. kdawg says:

            They can play, it’s just sad they fell short. Granted they will be doing better than other PHEVs that came out before them, but for a future product they should aim higher.

            Next thing to look for is the price. The Accord plugin was priced out of the market. Keep your fingers crossed that wont happen this time.

            1. Brian says:

              I still disagree that a 40-mile PHEV is disappointing, especially from a company whose previous best was 13 miles. There is much more gain to be had going from 13 to 40 than from 38 to 53. Also, a PHEV mentality is different from an EREV. A PHEV aims to be a hybrid that is better than a “traditional” hybrid. An EREV aims to be an affordable EV without range anxiety. I welcome both with open arms, if it widens the market.

              As for price, I agree. The original MSRP of the 2014 Accord PHEV was laughable. Honda basically came out and said “we don’t want to sell this”. It would be great to see them price it competitively. And keep in mind that its competition is not the Volt, but rather the ICE Accord. Honestly, I don’t have much of anything on which to pin my hopes, so I’m not even going to bother to cross my fingers on this one.

          2. Bill Howland says:

            Yeah Brian, On the Optima Blog I posted that all these automakers should license GM designs for their vehicles, since I’m sure someone could make a great CUV or SUV out of GM gen 1 or gen 2 Voltec designs.

            One question for them would be is the GEN 1 drive unit more expensive than the GEN 2? Since it is only 1 planetary gearset as opposed to 2, I’d think it shouldn’t cost significantly more. You’d think that GM would have plenty of sales for either the GEN 1 OR GEN 2 drive trains since they are both (uncannily) better than anything the Koreans or Japanese have.

            If they need another shift at Hamtramic (Detroit) to make the stuff, and LG needs to finally populate their battery plant making GM gen 1 or gen 2 battery cells, and the battery assembly plant (takes cells and makes them into finished gen 1 or 2 batteries), I’d think this would be a big WIN for Michigan, and satisfy the need for a plug in CUV or SUV family sized vehicle, besides something in the Colorado sized pickup truck. It would just *HAVE* to be more reliable than that silly 5 cyl trouble-prone engine they used to make 2 miles from me in Tonawanda.

            1. Mike616 says:

              Exactly, it’s time Toyota and Honda bought GM’s patent rights and MOVED into Yesterday, because GM, Tesla and Nissan are the Leaders.

    3. philip d says:

      As a midsized, Honda better keep that 124 kw motor from the Accord PHEV. It would be very dissapointing if they followed all the other PHEVs and put in a 70 kw motor.

    4. Speculawyer says:

      Well, I wouldn’t go by mileage . . . go by battery size. And now one should accept less than 16KWH of battery. With smaller cars you’ll go further and with SUVs you won’t go as far.

  5. Jeff Songster says:

    Ever since I went through 2 transmissions in 120K in my Honda… I gave up on their quality… now its definitely better late than never. Really though… who cares… maybe they should buy Subaru and see if it jogs their memory on quality.

    1. Brian says:

      Wow, that almost sounds like you had a lemon. What model/year was your Honda if you don’t mind me asking? In my experience, you shouldn’t need to replace a Honda transmission until more like 200K miles!

    2. SparkEV says:

      Honda = Had it Once, Never Did Again.

      I had CB750 motorcycle long ago, the only Honda I ever had.

      1. Driverguy01 says:

        I had a CB350, and if i remember right the first year model leaked oil like crazy. If you took the bike a little bit hard along the curves, the frame woud flex so much that when you rested the bike on it’s side stand, since the engine was bolted from both the bottom and top of the frame, the head would crack open a little bit and leak like crazy.
        How did Honda fix the problem?
        They made the sidestand longer! The bike would stand more upright, therefore would not leak as much. lol
        true story.
        I’ve always been a Suzuki man.

  6. When offered the choice of an otherwise identical Honda PHEV or FCV, it’s pretty hard to imagine how the FCV wins.

    A recent Idaho National Labs study reported that Chevy Volt drivers achieved 75% of their trips on electric fuel. Now that the 2016 Volt offers 50 miles all-electric-range that number will probably exceed 90%.

    It will be interesting to see what price premium consumers will pay to use hydrogen as a fuel to avoid that remaining 10% gasoline use. With the uncertainties of H2 refueling and maintenance, I can’t imagine it will be very much.

    1. Just_Chris says:

      Unless your choice was PHEV, BEV or PHFCEV. IMO the best use of the FC is as a range extender.

      1. If H2 was widely available, that might be an option, but considering the H2 station road map as published by CFP, you wouldnt be extending your range much, at least over the next 5 years.

        Its also quite a premium to pay for a very small gain. H2 is currently $13.50 – $16.50 per kg in California.

        If all drivers could reduce gasoline use 90%, like most 2016 Chevy Volt drivers can, we probably would’t be willing to spend $500 billion – $1 trillion on a building a nationwide hydrogen infrastructure to close the gap on that last 10%.

        BMW has already demostrated 80 mile AER in a PHEV. I’d love to see stats on how little gasoline those drivers use.

        1. Mike616 says:

          With a 200 mile EV coming from GM in 1 YEAR, only the dumbest capitalist in the world would build out 1.5 million dollar stations that will NEVER BE Used.

          It’s Never Going to Happen.

    2. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

      electric-car-insider.com said:

      “It will be interesting to see what price premium consumers will pay to use hydrogen as a fuel to avoid that remaining 10% gasoline use. With the uncertainties of H2 refueling and maintenance, I canโ€™t imagine it will be very much.”

      The significantly higher price of H2 vs gasoline is only one of several problems a hybrid BEV/FCEV would have. A problem perhaps even more significant than the difficulty of finding an H2 fueling station which is (a) open, and (b) willing to dispense H2 at full (10,000 PSI) pressure, is the problem with hydrogen being impossible to store long-term. Since it leaks past all seals, and even slowly thru the solid wall of a tank, it seems extremely unlikely that a full tank would remain full for many days, even in optimal conditions.

      I’d like to see a graph of the Mirai’s half-life leakage curve; how many days it takes for the Mirai to lose half its twin tanks’ pressure just by sitting still in a garage or parking lot.

  7. Speculawyer says:

    Honda really has been floundering for years. Toyota kicked their butt in the hybrid sector. And their gassers are quite stale. And now they went down the wrong path with fuel cells cars.

    They have a quite a job to return to relevance.

    1. vdiv says:

      It is rather sad as they have had some impressive, efficient, and fun cars during the decades and they do know how to make them reliable.

      1. Just_Chris says:

        I think you guys might be living in a bit of a bubble top 10 cars sold in USA:

        1 – truck
        2 – truck
        3 – truck, why do you guys buy so many trucks? doesn’t your stuff get wet when it rains?
        4 – Camry
        5 – Corolla
        6 – Altima
        7 – Honda CRV
        8 – Honda Civic
        9 – Honda Accord
        10 – Fusion

        I have to admit that is a shameful list of cars none of which inspire me to do anything other than cry but to say Honda is “floundering” and “irrelevant” is a bit of a stretch.

        Maybe grey and unexciting. They have done their homework with the fit and the accord PHEV and now they are going to release a grey and unexciting PHEV and BEV. Lets hope it sells as well as the Accord and the Civic.

        1. Brian says:

          I never understood why people buy so many trucks either. It’s all too common to see a parade of trucks with a single occupant and no luggage careening down the highway.

          If you look back a decade or two, the top three spots were all mid-sized sedans. Accord, Camry, and Taurus if my memory serves – in that order. Moreover, Honda usually occupied 2-3 of the top 5 slots in the US. I would say in comparison that Honda is at least slipping, and that floudering isn’t that much of a stretch really.

          1. Open-Mind says:

            While I love my Volt and drive it much more than my Silverado, the truck is a far more capable and flexible vehicle. It can seat 6 like an SUV, while hauling far more cargo than a large SUV, and it cost much less than a large SUV. It’s about as quiet and refined as my Volt, and it’s a great tow vehicle, and it gets me to work in almost any amount of snow.

            So if I had to own just one vehicle, it would be the truck. That’s why they’re so popular.

          2. Stephen Hodges says:

            I know I’m an outsider here, but isn’t the truck thing something to do with not having to meet the same standards as cars, and thus be cheaper to make/sell?. With cheap gas and lower standards (and not having to pay for the pollution caused)… both manufacturers and customers headed in the same direction.

            1. Mike616 says:

              Yes.

  8. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

    “Honda Commits To 2018 Nationwide Launch For 40-Mile Plug-In Hybrid”

    So, Honda plans to catch up in 2018 to where GM was in 2010. Well, better late than never, I guess… but seriously, eight years later? Color me unimpressed.

  9. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

    Brian said:

    “I am of the opinion that there should be a single pool of credits, from which all of the manufacturers โ€œdrinkโ€. Say 2 million credits total. The first to the party gets to drink the punch.”

    Nah, that makes far too much sense for American politicians to ever adopt it. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    1. Brian says:

      Too true, too true. But hey, a toy can dream, can’t he? ๐Ÿ˜‰

  10. Aaron says:

    First the Prius, now the Clarity. What’s with Japanese designers lately? Long front and rear overhangs with tiny wheels. Looks very awkward to my eye.

  11. Koenigsegg says:

    Lol

    i’ll have my Tesla by next year