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Honda FCX Clarity HFCV

Discussion in 'Electric Vehicles' started by BrianMRolfe, Jun 16, 2008.

  1. BrianMRolfe

    BrianMRolfe Member

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  2. Kardax

    Kardax Member

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    It makes sense, though.

    The lease limitation is to hide the true cost of the vehicle.

    California has several reasons. Hydrogen availability is the main one, plus its relatively-close proximity to Japan means if they need to fly a technician over to work on one, it's not as big of a deal. There may be CARB ZEV credit advantages. Lots of celebrities living there, too, to help endorse the vehicle.

    Usually, these sorts of deals also include free fuel, which is nice because hydrogen is not cheap... although it isn't clear whether that's happening in this case. It would be interesting if it wasn't :)

    -Ryan
     
  3. malcolm

    malcolm Active Member

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    Plus the desert is nearby when they decide to crush them.

    *rimshot*
     
  4. vfx

    vfx Well-Known Member

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    Can we rename this thread: Honda FCX Clarity ? It's the closest I could find.

    I drove one this weekend. Just a short stint around the block. Gauges were well done (not cheap!) and it sounded reeeeeeeal coool! The motor whine is much like the Roadster only higher pitched like Tesla's regen sound. The guy said that Honda "tuned" the car to make sound because they were worried that a car that was too quiet would concern drivers. I'm not totally buying that line but I did think it was a well done classic futuristic sound. Almost to the point of wondering if it had a sound generator and speakers under the hood.

    Too bad as a car it's a FAIL.
     
  5. doug

    doug Administrator / Head Moderator

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    It's too bad. Would probably make a reasonable EV.

    There are probably a few posts specifically on the Clarity in the Hydrogen vs Battery thread.
     
  6. stopcrazypp

    stopcrazypp Well-Known Member

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    Honda could have converted the Clarity into a BEV if they wanted. But they are doing the Fit EV instead, which I suppose is more practical.
     
  7. dpeilow

    dpeilow Moderator

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    Or it "fits" the EVs are small urban runabouts thing they persist with.
     
  8. stopcrazypp

    stopcrazypp Well-Known Member

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    I don't mind the Fit, it's on par with Leaf basically and is a popular car even in the US. As a 5 door hatchback it's very practical. Much better than the Toyota FT-EV based on the iQ or the tiny concept EV-N Honda released earlier on.
     
  9. Bud

    Bud Member

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  10. vfx

    vfx Well-Known Member

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    Yep. The car has great paint, great sounds, cool dash, pretty good pickup. All very impressive. I'm just a hydrogen hater. There. I said it. Hydrogen is for chumps. Whew. Glad to get that off my back. :)

    Yes, Would love to tool around your LEAF. Had a quick drive at ALt Car Expo but would like to stretch it out. I'll send you a note.
     
  11. Bud

    Bud Member

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    I feel the same about hydrogen fuel cells, and the obscenely large foreign and domestic government subsidies they've received. Dr. Joe Romm talks about the five miracles necessary for an affordable, practical HFC car.

    But maybe not all that money was completely wasted, because the Clarity electric drivetrain technology is used in the Fit EV: Honda Fit EV Concept - Official Site . In addition to the usual hype and a few cringe-inducers on the videos, is an appearance by the Honda president and CEO. He’s an engineer and EV advocate, in contrast to the previous guy.

    When Honda and Toyota start mass-producing truly affordable, highway-proficient commuter EVs, all the other kinds of EVs will be icing on the cake.
     
  12. dadaleus

    dadaleus 4GETOIL P85#S70,FdrX,S85D

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    Resurrecting this old thread rather than start a new one.

    I got to drive this one below last week. Connected with the owner because he was interested in my S.
    HFX.jpg

    Drove well with good pep, but not blood drain from your face acceleration like the S. Sorta like a futuristic Accord. Pleasant inside; traditional Honda feel with futuristic touches. Not luxurious but quite comfortable. It's long but the inside is narrower than the S and has the big center console where some of the FC equipment is.

    Owner (well, leaser) said they cost more than $1mil each to produce, but that's because they've only made 25 and it's all custom tooling (little to no reuse of tooling from other Honda cars). I don't understand carmakers desire to make these tiny demo fleets but not actually mass produce the cars. I guess its to keep regulators at bay that this stuff is always around the corner.

    Owner was asking me questions about the S, like about where I can charge it and do I have range anxiety. I asked him how many fuel cell stations there are (6 in SoCal) and pointed out that I start everyday fully charged from home so I only have to worry on long trips. He explained that they are experimenting with home natural gas > hydrogen fill units too. But much harder to put that in than an outlet. I explained how my employer easily put in NEMA 14-50s at our two offices so can get the extra boost there too, and then there's the Superchargers.

    The other thing that matters a lot to me, but I'm sure not all people, is while HFC cars may be able to operate energy efficiently using natural gas based hydrogen production, that's still using a non-renewable fossil fuel. Hydrogen could be made using solar, but it takes a lot of electricity that way, so I'm pretty sure (maybe someone can confirm) its much more efficient to just charge a battery like on the S. Eventually we'll have to transition off of fossil fuels, so as Elon says, might as well start going down that technological road now.
     
  13. anticitizen13.7

    anticitizen13.7 Enemy of the Status Quo

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    The FCX Clarity is partly an evolutionary dead end now, but if nothing else, the program provided Honda with motor technology that could replace it's ICE business if necessary. The Honda Fit EV uses the same coaxial electric motor as the Clarity. It just happens to be connected to a Lithium Ion pack instead of a fuel cell.

    Honda is deeply invested in internal combustion engines, and is arguably one of the best engine makers in the world, but it is also a company that has become increasingly concerned about the environmental impact of ICEs. They are looking for a way out. However, I think they face the same institutional pressures that all the other car manufacturers face. Their management and employees are vested in ICEs, and their dealer network probably stands to lose big time if the low maintenance costs of EVs results in less repair business.
     
  14. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Indeed, by far the most aggressively hostile reaction I ever got about EVs was from a Honda dealer.
     
  15. vfx

    vfx Well-Known Member

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    So did the owner drive your S? I just missed trading a Roadster drive with Christopher and Jamie's car.
     
  16. dadaleus

    dadaleus 4GETOIL P85#S70,FdrX,S85D

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    When he (name is Jim, so not the same people as the one you drove) and I first talked, he had not driven an S. But by coincidence, by the time our lunch came around one month later he had a friend who had taken delivery deliver, so no.

    But his wife is interested in the S, so I got to answer a lot of her questions. She is driving a Mercedes HFC car now.

    First time I've run into a problem with the charging being way cheaper than gas argument: They get their hydrogen for free!!! (Probably another case of the cost is way out of bounds so its given free since it's all part of a demonstration project anyway.)
     
  17. anticitizen13.7

    anticitizen13.7 Enemy of the Status Quo

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    Honda people are attached to their internal combustion engines.

    I know, because I drive an 8th Generation Civic Sedan, and even the simple, low-end 1.8L SOHC engine in that car is generally pleasant sounding :wink: Step up to Honda's more expensive DOHC 2.4L or 3.5L V6, and the engine is somehow both smooth as silk and aggressive at the same time. Everything from the layout of the engine bay to the craftsmanship of the individual powertrain components leaves the impression that it was engineered and built by people who are extremely dedicated to the product. That's hard to give up. Part of me is going to really miss the clutch pedal and shifter of a Honda, once EVs go mainstream. Still, I think the age of the ICE will come to an end shortly. Petroleum is not an infinite source of energy or environmentally viable in the long run. I am willing to give up my i-VTEC engine and manual shifter when the time comes.
     
  18. stopcrazypp

    stopcrazypp Well-Known Member

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    The Clarity was released with much fanfare and Honda was talking about it as if it was a serious production vehicle. I guess that was because of all the talk of the California hydrogen highway (which never happened). Honda says they are still planning 2018 for full production of the FCX, so let's see if that happens. It all rides on whether the infrastructure happens.

    But by that time BEV technology would have another jump already.
     
  19. dadaleus

    dadaleus 4GETOIL P85#S70,FdrX,S85D

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    What I don't get... is how can anyone plan the car of tomorrow based on a fuel source that will eventually run out? I'm basing this on the understanding that the only efficient method to produce hydrogen is with natural gas. Yes, as I noted above, hydrogen can be produced using just solar, but my understanding is that is way less efficient than just pumping the electrons into a BEV.
     
  20. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Right. Might as well just build natural gas cars and forget all the complex H2 technology.
     

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