• Image Credit: Copyright 2015 AOL
  • Image Credit: Copyright 2015 AOL
  • Image Credit: Copyright 2015 AOL
  • Image Credit: Copyright 2015 AOL
  • Image Credit: Copyright 2015 AOL
We know it will go on sale in the US next spring. We know it will have an estimated range of over 300 miles. We know it will start sales in California, since that's where the hydrogen stations are. But perhaps the one key details about Honda's new fuel cell vehicle that we are learning today is the name. It will be the Honda Clarity Fuel Cell.

That should ring a few H2 bells for hydrogen vehicle fans out there, since the fuel cell vehicle that Honda has been leasing since 2008 was called the FCX Clarity (and the hydrogen test vehicle before that was the FCX). Naming the new vehicle - known until now as the FCEV - the new Clarity draws a clear line through to Honda's hydrogen history. This is a completely different message than the one that Toyota is sending with the name for its upcoming hydrogen car, the Mirai. In Japanese, Mirai means future.

It is also interesting to note that Honda is not going to target regular consumers with the Clarity during the first year, at least in Japan. Honda says that it will work "mainly" with local governments and business customers that have shown an interest in hydrogen technology and will begin sales to individual customers "later." The five-seat Clarity Fuel Cell will come in three colors: Premium Brilliant Garnet Metallic, White Orchid Pearl, and Crystal Black Pearl.

Honda says that the price, in Japan, will be 7.6 million yen, including consumption tax. That equals $63,610 in the US, but we all know these prices cannot simply be converted like this to arrive at the US MSRP. Still, now we have a guideline. At this time, Honda does not plan to sell the vehicle, since, the Clarity will be "currently available exclusively for lease sales."

We got to take a brief drive in the FCEV this past week, and you can read more about the technological advances in the new Clarity (the smaller fuel cell stack, the powertrain packaging, etc.) here. The fact that Honda consistently calls the new car the Clarity Fuel Cell (as opposed to simply the Clarity) gives us reason to think that the upcoming PHEV and all-electric models will not only share a chassis, but also perhaps a name. Clarity EV, anyone?

Honda Clarity Fuel Cell | Tokyo Motor Show | Autoblog Short Cuts
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Honda Exhibits World Premiere of CLARITY FUEL CELL, Planned Production Model of its All-new Fuel Cell Vehicle, at 44th Tokyo Motor Show 2015

-- Lease sales in Japan will begin in March 2016 --

TOKYO, Japan, October 28, 2015 - Honda Motor Co., Ltd. today unveiled the world premiere of the planned production model of its all-new fuel cell vehicle (FCV), CLARITY FUEL CELL, at the 44th Tokyo Motor Show 2015. This model will be on display at the Honda booth during the Tokyo Motor Show. (Press days: October 28-29, 2015 / Public days: October 30 – November 8, 2015)

The all-new CLARITY FUEL CELL fuses the ease of use of a gasoline-powered vehicle and values that are unique to a FCV at a high level. This fusion gives this sedan-type FCV high value and potential to set a benchmark for FCVs now and in the future.

Employing original Honda technologies, the fuel cell stack for this model was downsized by 33% compared to the previous version of the fuel cell stack and yet output of more than 100kW and output density of 3.1kW/L*1 – approximately a 60% improvement – were achieved. The fuel cell powertrain was made as compact as a V6 engine*2, and thus it was made possible to consolidate it under the hood of a sedan-type vehicle for the first time in the world*3. This powertrain layout enabled a full cabin package that seats five adults comfortably .

Combined with improved efficiency of the powertrain and a reduced energy requirement for driving, a 70MPa high-pressure hydrogen storage tank installed to this vehicle provides a cruising range of more than 700 km*4(Honda internal measurement – for reference), the top- class cruising range among all FCVs. The tank can be refilled in approximately three minutes*5, realizing ease of use equivalent to that of a gasoline-powered vehicle. Furthermore, the high-output motor with maximum output of 130kW*1 realizes both direct, highly- responsive and exhilarating driving experience and excellent quietness at the same time. In addition, when combined with an external power feeding device, the Power Exporter 9000, the all-new CLARITY FUEL CELL can function as a "power plant on wheels" that generates and provides electricity to the community in times of a disaster or other events.

Honda will begin lease sales in Japan of this all-new CLARITY FUEL CELL in March 2016. For the first year after the start of sales in Japan, Honda will focus on sales mainly to local government bodies or business customers which Honda has already been working together for the popularization of FCVs. During this period, Honda will collect information about the in- market use situation, including the external power feeding device, and gather diverse opinions from customers and other relevant organizations, then later begin sales to individual customers.

Honda will begin with small-volume production at the Production Supervisory Unit and Powertrain Production Supervisory Unit (located in Takanezawa-machi, Shioya-gun, Tochigi, Japan.), then eventually expand production volume and begin regular sales along with lease sales. The sales price*6 of CLARITY FUEL CELL in Japan will be 7.66 million yen (including consumption tax). The Power Exporter 9000, which has the capacity to feed approximately seven-days' worth*7 of electricity for an average household, is scheduled to go on sale at the same time as the CLARITY FUEL CELL. CLARITY FUEL CELL will be sequentially evolved into the U.S. and Europe.

Honda was one of the first automakers to begin focusing attention to hydrogen as a possible solution for issues such as global warming and depletion of fossil fuels. Honda has been positioning the FCV, which emits only water, as the ultimate environmentally-responsible vehicle and has taken a proactive approach to the research and development of FCVs since the late 1980s.

In 2002, the Honda FCX became the first fuel cell vehicle in the world to be certified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the California Air Resources Board (CARB). With these certifications, Honda began lease sales of the Honda FCX in Japan and the U.S. In 2008, Honda became the first automaker to begin lease sales of the FCX Clarity, which featured an innovative sedan-type package and unprecedented driving experience. The all-new CLARITY FUEL CELL was developed based on various data related to the ease of use and driving performance of these previous Honda FCVs.

With the goal to make a contribution to the forthcoming hydrogen energy society and to realize the joy and freedom of mobility and a sustainable society where people can enjoy life, Honda will continue taking on new challenges in the area of hydrogen technologies including the Smart Hydrogen Station, FCVs and external power feeding devices under the concept of "generate, use and get connected."

Key specifications

Number of occupants


Cruising range (reference)

More than 700km*4 (Honda internal measurement while being driven in JC 08 Mode

Refueling time

Approximately 3 minutes*5

FC maximum output

More than 100kW

FC stack output density


Motor maximum output


Hydrogen maximum filling pressure


Energy storage

Lithium-ion battery

Vehicle size (length X width X height)


Price*6 (reference)

7.66 million yen (including consumption tax)

Body color (total 3 colors)

‐Premium Brilliant Garnet Metallic (Roof color: Black / Interior color: Platinum Gray)
‐While Orchid Pearl (Roof color: Black / Interior color: Platinum Gray)
‐Crystal Black Pearl (Interior color: Platinum Gray)

*1 Honda internal measurement
*2 Honda 3.5L V6 engine
*3 Among planned production models of sedan-type vehicle, Honda internal research as of October 2015
*4 Honda internal measurement in JC08 mode and after refueling the vehicle at a hydrogen station with charging pressure of 70 MPa which comply with SAE standards (J2601). The cruising range may vary when the vehicle is refueled at hydrogen station with different specifications, as amount of hydrogen put in the tank will vary depending on the specifications of hydrogen station. The cruising range may also vary significantly depending on conditions of usage (ambient temperature, traffic congestion, etc.) and how the vehicle is driven (sudden starts, use of air-conditioning unit, etc.)
*5 Honda internal measures using 70MPa station in the exterior temperature of 20 degrees Celsius. Time required for refueling may vary depending on conditions.
*6 This model is currently available exclusively for lease sales. The lease price varies depending on lease terms and plans etc.
*7 Calculated based on the average daily electricity consumption by an average household (Researched by the Federation of Electric Power Companies of Japan)

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