With three different powertrains and luxury packaging, the Clarity series has wide appeal.
The triple-powertrain strategy pays dividends in development and manufacturing costs as well as production mix.
M - Honda is expanding its Clarity line from a fuel-cell auto to a lineup that offers a choice of three electrified powertrains. Honda has previously announced plans to introduce a dedicated new hybrid auto to the US market in 2018. Another dedicated hybrid model is slated to arrive next year and will be made in America. Honda expects the Clarity Electric to go for only about 80 miles on a single charge of its 25.5kWh battery, and that figure should drop even more if you gun that 161-horsepower electric motor for too long.
Total Clarity PHEV range is seen topping 330 miles (531 km) when the car's 1.5L Atkinson-cycle 4-cyl.is utilized.
The vehicle's electromotive power comes from a 181-horsepower electric motor producing 232 lb. -ft. of torque and drawing power from both the gasoline engine and a 17-kilowatt hour (kWh) battery pack with a recharge time of 2.5 hours at 240 volts.
The plug-in Clarity is expected to launch in Canada late this year, likely in the winter.
A total recharge takes just over three hours from a 240 V supply. Honda is aiming for 120/102/111 mpg-e EPA numbers.
The Clarity PHEV will have selectable Normal, Econ and Sport modes to balance energy efficiency and performance as desired.
To push the Clarity, Honda is offering a $369-a-month three-year lease that includes a credit for $15,000 toward hydrogen and a $5,000 rebate from the state of California.
"Our outlook for fuel cells is bolstered by the tremendous initial reaction we have received from our customers about their experience with the Clarity Fuel Cell and from media who've already had the opportunity to drive it", he argued.
The original Honda to wear the Clarity badge was a fuel-cell-only vehicle with USA availability limited to hand-picked lessees in California.
But Honda realizes that people aren't keen on hydrogen-powered cars yet.
The additional variants leverage the platform that has enabled the Clarity Fuel Cell's low, wide and aerodynamic proportions and roomy five-passenger cabin.
But, Honda points out, the mid-sized Clarity EV is bigger and roomier than a longer-range vehicle like the Bolt, and, besides, 80 miles really is plenty for most people's daily routines. Conrad also said that over the next two years, more than half of the new models Honda introduces in the United States will be "electrified vehicles of one kind or another". Even in California, which has enough of them that it's the only state in which these cars are now available, there are still only a relative handful. Your mileage will vary depending on driving conditions, how you drive and maintain your vehicle, battery-pack age/condition, and other factors.
Automotive News has reported that the all-electric Clarity will have a range of 80 miles, meaning it won't come close to competing with Tesla's Model 3 sedan that's expected to have a range of 215 miles.