Honda has already detailed which vehicles it will bring to the Tokyo Motor Show next week, but we think there's something the automaker isn't telling us. We've been thinking about the company's various announcements regarding future powertrain plans, and we now think that the FCEV is going to house more than just a hydrogen fuel cell powertrain at some point down the road. We think that the upcoming pure electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles that Honda has talked about - but still hasn't shown hide nor hair of - will actually be based on the FCEV.

The FCEV that's coming to Tokyo (pictured) has been toned down from the fanciful concepts that we saw in LA in 2013 (below) and 2014 and there's no reason why Honda couldn't be the first to offer one car with a truly wide variety of powertrains. It's already said that electric vehicles are a core technology, and while many automakers talk about how both plug-in and hydrogen cars are electric at heart, Honda could just be the first to prove it in a big way.

Now, all that Honda has officially confirmed is that it will introduce the new electrified vehicles by 2018. Ryan Harty, Honda's manager of environmental business development, told AutoblogGreen earlier this year that, "We want to bring these vehicles [EV and PHEV] to market in significant volume." One way to make that feasible would be repurpose the FCEV to use a battery or a PHEV powertrain.

We've got no proof of any of this, of course, but we think the logic makes sense. In any case, we're plenty excited to see what Honda reveals at the show. There is still plenty of time for the company's future plans to shift – the hydrogen car might not arrive until June of 2017, after all, with the other two due in 2018 – but we could learn a lot of specifics in Tokyo next week.

Honda Fuel Cell Vehicle Update | SAE 2015

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