Honda expanded the demonstration program it started for its Fit electric vehicles late last month by sending two more EVs to Google and Stanford University.

Honda said Google, whose Mountain View, CA, headquarters are about 40 miles south of San Francisco and five miles from Stanford, is using the EV as part of its G-Fleet employee car-sharing service. At Stanford, researchers will study how the EV is driven differently from conventional vehicles and how drivers cope with so-called "range anxiety" associated with cars that can't be filled up with gas.

The automaker late last month delivered its first EV to the city of Torrance, near Los Angeles, in an effort to get real-world feedback on the vehicle.

Honda unveiled the 2013 Fit EV at last year's Los Angeles Auto Show and said it would start leasing the car in certain California and Oregon markets this summer. The automaker estimates that the car has a single-charge range of 76 miles – about the same as the Nissan Leaf – and can be recharged from a 240-volt system in as little as three hours. Potential drivers should expect a lease rate of about $399 a month.
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Honda Delivers 2013 Fit EV to Google and Stanford University

Honda Electric Vehicle Demonstration Program participants to conduct real-world testing on new Honda battery-electric vehicle

02/08/2012 - TORRANCE, Calif.

Honda recently delivered 2013 Fit EV battery-electric vehicles to Google Inc. and Stanford University as a part of the Honda Electric Vehicle Demonstration Program. Along with the city of Torrance, Calif., each participant is now conducting general testing as well as providing specific feedback related to the future introduction of electric vehicles. The Honda Electric Vehicle Demonstration Program participants are the first recipients of the 2013 Fit EV in the United States.

"The goal of the Honda Electric Vehicle Demonstration Program is to better understand the challenges and opportunities associated with the advancement in battery-electric technology," said Steve Center, vice president of the Environmental Business Development Office at American Honda. "Honda has a long history with electric vehicles beginning with the introduction of our first battery-electric car, the EV Plus, nearly 15 years ago. Honda's experience and the unique feedback that Google, Stanford University and the city of Torrance will provide will be valuable to the future introduction of battery-electric technology."
Honda debuted the 2013 Fit EV at the 2011 Los Angeles Auto Show and announced plans to begin leasing the 123 city-mile per charge (76 mile range combined adjusted city/highway)1 battery-electric commuter vehicle to customers in select California and Oregon markets during the summer of 2012 with a rollout to east coast markets planned for Spring 2013. Equipped with a 20-kWh lithium-ion battery and 92- kW coaxial electric motor, the Fit EV battery can be fully recharged in as little as 3 hours when connected to a 240-volt circuit.

Google Inc.
The delivery of the Fit EV to Google Inc. was marked by an employee ride and drive. Nearly 100 'Googlers' took the Fit EV for a spin around the Google Mountain View, Calif., campus. Google will now use the Fit EV as a part of its G-Fleet, an employee car-sharing service that features numerous plug-in vehicles. Google's participation in the Honda Electric Vehicle Demonstration Program will involve analysis of vehicle usage including CO2 reduction, energy consumption on a miles/kWh basis and overall energy cost.

Stanford University Automotive Research
Over the past year, Honda has collaborated Stanford University professors, researchers and students from several departments including Mechanical Engineering and Psychology through various seminars and classes. The year-long collaboration resulted in a research direction on how to study the psychological and physical reactions of using battery-electric vehicles and how these reactions differ when driving a traditional gasoline-powered vehicle.

With the Fit EV now at Stanford, the research team will use both the battery-electric vehicle and a gasoline-powered Fit to test their theories. Successful methodology implementation will yield a goal of not only decreasing anxiety associated with new technology, but also increasing joy in the driving experience. Ultimately, the research results will help Honda to better understand customer acceptance of battery-electric vehicles and how to overcome physiological obstacles associated with the adoption of new technologies.


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  • 18 Comments
      Sasparilla Fizz
      • 5 Months Ago
      Honda continues adrift. Just like the Honda EV+'s back in the 90's Honda is just going to do the minimum when it comes to EV's, which is sad - they could be a strong force in this market if they chose to. Hopefully Honda won't shred the Fit EV's like they did the EV+'s after they came off lease and the politicians had been bought off.
      Kei Jidosha
      • 5 Months Ago
      “Successful methodology implementation will yield a goal of not only decreasing anxiety associated with new technology, but also increasing joy in the driving experience.” It seems Honda is the one needing to get over “anxiety associated with new technology” http://world.honda.com/history/challenge/1988evplus/text/03.html While Honda’s EV history is not that encouraging, the FIT EV previews are. Message to Honda; “Do not be afraid”
      goodoldgorr
      • 5 Months Ago
      Honda probably don't like bev, look at this car , it is not new, it's a old fit with a battery and some wasching machine electric motors. What they like and what they are focusing for real is fuelcell cars like their fcx clarity a way better car. The goverment is still impeding hydrogen stations so that's why nobody have begun fuelcell car commercialisation even if the car industry have said years ago that they were ready for fuelcells.
        Ele Truk
        • 5 Months Ago
        @goodoldgorr
        I don't think the government is impeding hydrogen filling stations, they just aren't throwing any money at it. All the oil companies are free to install all the stations they want. But that's just the thing, they don't want to, they want the government to do it.
          Letstakeawalk
          • 5 Months Ago
          @Ele Truk
          "All the oil companies are free to install all the stations they want." No, they can't. There are still a lot of legal regulatory and code issues that have to be completely finalized before commercial-scale distribution construction can take place. However, there is a plan and schedule in place, and all the parts of the puzzle are starting to come together. From GCC: "The California Energy Commission (CEC) has issed a competitive grant solicitation (PON-11-609) for projects to develop the infrastructure necessary to dispense hydrogen transportation fuel. The goal of this solicitation is to provide grant funds to projects which expand the network of public retail and public-private fleet-based hydrogen fueling stations to serve the current population of fuel cell vehicles (FCVs) and to accommodate the planned large-scale roll-out of FCVs commencing in 2015. "
      2 Wheeled Menace
      • 5 Months Ago
      Yay, so it's like the Nissan Leaf, except you can't buy it, or have it long enough for it to even remotely pay off in fuel savings. These crappy leases are so passe. Good for some ZEV/CARB points though right?
        Spec
        • 5 Months Ago
        @2 Wheeled Menace
        Yeah, it just doesn't work well for consumers. Businesses like leases though because they are 100% deductible.
      Spec
      • 5 Months Ago
      Are they available to us common consumers?
        Michael Walsh
        • 5 Months Ago
        @Spec
        3 year, closed-end lease, with no buyout. $399/mo.
          Spec
          • 5 Months Ago
          @Michael Walsh
          $14,400 to rent the car for 3 years? No thanks.
          Ele Truk
          • 5 Months Ago
          @Michael Walsh
          Yay, lease a Honda EV. That way if they lose interest they can take them back and crush them, just like in the 2000s.
        goodoldgorr
        • 5 Months Ago
        @Spec
        Some are interrested to buy but few. This is a weak offering from honda, probably it's there for the subsidies given by goverments mandated behind close doors by big oil and some bloggers here in that website. The common consumer is not interrested in bev as selling numbers show and also car manufacturers is not really interrested to sell costly problematic bevs.
      DaveMart
      • 5 Months Ago
      Its a shame that Honda have not taken advantage of the extremely fast charging possible with their Toshiba batteries. If they had a couple of very fast chargers in the testing area then they could get a charge in around ten minutes or so, which as range anxiety goes is a pretty relaxing.
        electronx16
        • 5 Months Ago
        @DaveMart
        The day batteries can be charged in minutes, the days of the ICE are numbered. Why would a company like Honda that's all about ICE's try to hasten that moment? This is just CARB play, not a change of direction.
      Letstakeawalk
      • 5 Months Ago
      Interestingly, if Google is charging those Fit EVs on site, then they are being charged with a percentage of electricity generated by Google's Bloom Box fuel cells.
        2 Wheeled Menace
        • 5 Months Ago
        @Letstakeawalk
        Lol, whatever happened to that company? they stopped putting out press releases in mid 2011.
          Spec
          • 5 Months Ago
          @2 Wheeled Menace
          Overhyped technology probably did not pan out so well. Solid Oxide fuel cells were not exactly a new thing. They have some applications but they may not have worked as well as people would like. Who knows, maybe they can get them to work well. Natural gas is sure cheap these days, so if they can get them to work it would be nice.
          Letstakeawalk
          • 5 Months Ago
          @2 Wheeled Menace
          You're asking what happened to Bloom Energy? They've been pretty busy, installing their equipment in buildings all across the US. "ATLANTA, Feb. 13, 2012 -- ATLANTA, Feb. 13, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Cox Enterprises announced today the installation of five fuel cells at its Cox Communications subsidiary in San Diego." "Friday, February 10, 2012 3:30 pm | Updated: 8:09 am, Sat Feb 11, 2012. The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) will conduct a public hearing on the Application for a Coastal Zone Act Permit received from Diamond State Generation Partners, LLC a unit of Bloom Energy. The company is seeking a permit to install and operate 235 fuel cells ("Bloom Boxes") that will utilize natural gas, providing up to 47 megawatts of electrical power to the PJM electrical grid." "February 5, 2012, 10:00 a.m. Century City skyscraper Constellation Place, formerly known as MGM Tower, is the first Los Angeles high-rise to be served by electricity-generating fuel cells. Landlord JMB Realty installed two Bloom Energy Servers that will produce 400 kilowatts of power, about one-third of the electricity needed by the 35-story tower." "February 2, 2012 Earlier this week Adobe announced that it had added another 400 kilowatts of Bloom Energy fuel cells to its current fleet of Bloom Boxes. I spoke with Mike Bangs, Adobe's Director of Global Facilities, about the installation. The two 200-kilowatt units installed at the company's San Francisco site are Bloom's next-generation design and put out twice the power of the previous 100-kilowatt model -- in the same footprint. Those two units provide about a third of the power for Adobe's San Francisco operation." That's just the first several links on Google News...
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