Canadian Manufacturing

New Honda fuel cell vehicle to make North American debut by end of year

Though still limited to California, Honda has improved FCV's cell stack; Clarity can range 300 miles and refuel in three to five minutes



PHOTO: Honda

Honda said the more compact fuel cell and integrated powertrain now fit under the hood of the car, freeing up passenger space. PHOTO: Honda

TORRANCE, Calif.—Honda Motor Co. will release the next-generation of its hydrogen-powered sedan in North America before the end of 2016.

The Japanese automaker announced Oct. 5 its five-passenger 2016 Clarity fuel cell vehicle will premiere in select California markets this fall and offer a range of upgrades compared to the outgoing FCX Clarity.

The new FCV features a more compact cell stack with 60 per cent greater power density than its predecessor, which Honda released in the Los Angeles area, as well as other international markets in 2008.

“The more compact fuel cell and integrated powertrain, comparable in size to a V-6 engine, now fits entirely under the hood of the car, allowing for a more spacious cabin with seating for five passengers,” Honda said.

The vehicle’s range is expected to exceed 300 miles and it can be refueled in thee to five minutes.

Though the new Clarity will still be limited to California because of hydrogen infrastructure limitations, Honda said the vehicle will be available in the San Francisco Bay and Sacramento areas as well as Los Angeles.

As clean transportation becomes a higher priority, hydrogen infrastructure is expected to continue expanding throughout North America. Earlier this year, for instance, French industrial gas company Air Liquide announced it would build 12 hydrogen fuel stations in the northeast U.S. in partnership with Toyota.

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