Tuesday 17 June 2008

Honda FCX Clarity production begins & U.S spec revealed

The first Honda FCX Clarity has rolled off the production line in Japan. The zero-emission car won’t be coming to Europe yet, as Honda is initially leasing a fleet of 200 vehicles to customers in the California and Japan.

Customers will pay roughly £300/$600 per month over three years for the privilege, but drivers will be conscious of the car’s 270-mile range as there are only 3 hydrogen filling stations in California and 12 in Japan.

John Kingston, environment manager for Honda UK, said; “The arrival of the first hydrogen fuel cell car is particularly significant during this time of rapidly increasing oil prices. Honda is proud to offer an alternative energy solution that could reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and the effect of motoring on climate change."

Under the FCX’s skin is a fuel cell stack that uses an electromechanical reaction between hydrogen and oxygen to convert chemical energy into electrical energy, which in turn powers the 134bhp motor. Only water exits out of its exhaust.

The first car that has rolled off the production line is destined for a customer in Japan.

Press Release:

TOCHIGI, Japan - American Honda Motor Co., Inc., today announced five of the first customers for its advanced new FCX Clarity hydrogen fuel cell-powered vehicle and also provided details of the world's first fuel cell vehicle dealership network in the United States. The announcements were made during a ceremony for the start of FCX Clarity production at the world's first dedicated fuel cell vehicle manufacturing facility in Japan.

Film producer Ron Yerxa will take delivery of the first FCX Clarity in July. The remaining four early adopters for Honda's next-generation fuel cell vehicle are author and actress Jamie Lee Curtis and her filmmaker husband Christopher Guest; business owner and car enthusiast Jim Salomon; actress Laura Harris; and Jon Spallino, already the world's first retail fuel cell vehicle customer, who has been leasing the current generation FCX since 2005. Yerxa, Harris and Spallino attended the event in Japan.

To provide its customers with outstanding sales and service support and as a critical step in advancing fuel cell vehicles in the real world, American Honda announced the establishment of the first network of dealers to facilitate the sales and service of fuel cell vehicles. The three Southern California Honda dealers are Power Honda Costa Mesa (Costa Mesa), Honda of Santa Monica (Santa Monica) and Scott Robinson Honda (Torrance).

"This is an important day in the history of fuel cell vehicle technology and a monumental step closer to the day when fuel cell cars will be part of the mainstream," said John Mendel, executive vice president of American Honda. "Our customers and dealers share in our vision for a cleaner and more sustainable transportation future, and share in our challenge to embrace a new generation of automotive technology that we think will carry the auto industry and its customers into the future."

FCX Clarity Customers:

The five customers announced today were among the very first people to share with Honda their passion for the environment and interest in the FCX Clarity, dating back to its debut as a concept model at the 2005 Tokyo Motor Show. The initial criteria for fuel cell vehicle ownership, including proximity to hydrogen refueling stations, driving patterns and vehicle needs, all played a part in Honda's customer selection process.

"Auto companies can't explore the potential for fuel cell technology as the ultimate solution to our world's energy and environmental challenges by ourselves. Our customers are true pioneers and leaders in the effort to bring fuel cell technology to the marketplace," said Mendel.Ron Yerxa, a film producer and partner at Bona Fide Productions, is a long-time car enthusiast and advocate for the environment. He lives with his wife, Annette Ballester, in Santa Monica, California. Yerxa first learned of the FCX Concept vehicle from a car magazine and contacted American Honda to share his interest and enthusiasm.

Jon Spallino, partner and Chief Financial Officer of an Irvine, California-based engineering and construction firm and the world's first retail customer of a hydrogen fuel cell-powered vehicle, is excited to trade in his first-generation FCX for the all-new FCX Clarity. Having lived with fuel cell technology for three years now, Spallino and his family, residents of Redondo Beach, California, are looking forward to the all-new vehicle's vastly improved performance, enhanced features, improved fuel efficiency, and advanced four-door, four-passenger sedan design.

Actress and children's book author Jamie Lee Curtis and her husband, filmmaker Christopher Guest, also live with their family in Santa Monica. Curtis and Guest have owned other alternative fuel and hybrid vehicles, and they continue to seek out ways to live and advocate a greener lifestyle.

Jim Salomon, a business owner and car enthusiast, resides in Newport Beach, California with his family and will be American Honda's first retail customer to regularly refuel at the recently renovated Irvine hydrogen refueling station. Salomon and his family live in a home he designed and built with an emphasis on energy efficiency as well as recycled and sustainable materials.

Actress and green advocate Laura Harris learned about the FCX Clarity from a friend and test drove a prototype car at the Los Angeles auto show in November 2007. Canadian-born Harris lives in Silverlake, California, and will refuel primarily in Burbank. Lessons learned from her usage patterns and experiences can help pave the way for eventual market expansion outside of the Irvine, Torrance, and Santa Monica areas.

Honda previously announced plans to deliver about 200 FCX Clarity hydrogen fuel cell-powered vehicles in the U.S. and Japan to customers in the first three years of production, with leases beginning in July. The lease program marks the world's first large-scale retail initiative for fuel cell vehicle technology.

First-ever Fuel Cell Vehicle Dealership Network:

Reinforcing its commitment to further advance Honda fuel cell technology, American Honda announced that three Southern California dealerships will comprise the world's first fuel cell automobile dealership network. Power Honda Costa Mesa, Honda of Santa Monica and Scott Robinson Honda are each located in close proximity to hydrogen refueling stations and will be well-positioned to support Honda's growing base of FCX Clarity customers. American Honda is working with its dealer partners to implement processes for fuel cell vehicle lease, delivery and service support for the duration of their leases. Establishing a dedicated sales network and service infrastructure provides customers with the best balance of convenience and the highest quality of service. When the FCX Clarity requires periodic maintenance, customers will simply schedule a visit with their local FCX Clarity dealer. American Honda will perform all required work at its specialized fuel cell service facility, in the greater Los Angeles area. Upon completion of the work, the dealer will return the vehicle to the customer.

About the FCX Clarity:

The FCX Clarity is a next-generation, hydrogen powered fuel cell-powered vehicle. Propelled by an electric motor that runs on electricity generated in the fuel cell, the vehicle's only emission is water, and its fuel efficiency is three times that of a modern gasoline-powered automobile. Based on the entirely-new Honda V Flow fuel cell platform, and powered by a highly compact, efficient and powerful new Honda V Flow fuel cell stack, the FCX Clarity marks the significant progress Honda continues to make in advancing the real-world performance and appeal of the fuel cell car.

Significant advances over Honda's previous generation FCX include:

an advanced new four passenger sedan design

a greater than 30 percent increase in driving range up to 280 miles*

a 25 percent increase in combined fuel economy to 72 miles/kg-H2*
(74 mpg GGE )

a 50 percent improvement in fuel stack power output density by volume

a 40 percent smaller and 50 percent lighter new lithium ion battery pack

Honda is responsible for the development of the world's first fuel cell car (Honda FCX) to be certified for regular commercial use by the U.S. EPA and California Air Resources Board; the first deployment of a fuel cell car with a fleet customer; and the first individual retail customer for a fuel cell vehicle.*Based on official 2008 EPA estimated range and fuel efficiency values.

U.S Specification:


Drive-by-Wire™ Throttle System •
Shift-by-Wire Gear Selector •
Front-Wheel Drive •
CARB Emissions Rating ZEV V FLOW FUEL CELL STACK Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell (PEMFC) •
Power Output 100kW Size (liters) 57 Weight (lbs) 148


Lithium-Ion Battery • Output (Volts) 288


AC Synchronous Permanent-Magnet Electric Motor •
Horsepower (SAE net) 134 Torque (lb-ft @ rpm) 189 @ 0 - 3,056
Power Output 100kW


Double Wishbone Front Suspension •
Independent Multi-Link Rear Suspension •
Stabilizer Bar (mm, front/rear) 28.6 / 14.0 Electric Power-Assisted Rack-and-Pinion Steering (EPS) •
Steering Wheel Turns, Lock-to-Lock 3.34 Steering Ratio 16.1 :1 Turning Diameter, Curb-to-Curb (ft) 35.4
Power-Assisted Ventilated Front Disc/Solid Rear Disc Brakes (front/rear) •
Wheels 16" Aluminum Alloy/Resin Aerodynamic Wheels All-Season Tires 215/60 R16 95H


Wheelbase (in.) 110.2
Length (in.) 190.3
Height (in.) 57.8
Width (in.) 72.7
Track (in., front/rear) 62.2 / 62.8
Curb Weight (lbs.) 3582
Weight Distribution (%, front/rear) 53/47


Headroom (in, front/rear) 38.6 / 37.1
Legroom (in, front/rear) 41.9 / 37.9
Shoulder Room (in, front/rear) 58.8 / 56.2
Hiproom (in, front/rear) 57.5 / 54.6
Cargo Volume (cu. ft.) 13.1 (includes storage well)
Passenger Volume (cu. ft.) 100.8 Seating Capacity 4


Miles Per Kilogram (City/Highway/Combined) 77 / 67 / 72 Miles Per Gasoline Gallon Equivalent (GGE) City/Highway/Combined 79 / 68 / 74 Driving Range 280 Fuel Capacity (Nominal) / System Pressure 4.1 kg @ 5000psi Required Fuel Compressed Hydrogen Gas *Based on official EPA estimated range and fuel efficiency values for the 2008 FCX Clarity. Use for comparison purposes only. Actual mileage may vary.


3-Point Seat Belts at all Seating Positions •
Front Passenger-Side and Rear 3-Point Seat Belts with Automatic Tensioning System •
Driver's and Front Passenger's Seat Belt Reminder •
Dual-Stage, Dual-Threshold Front Airbags (SRS) •
Front Side Airbags with Passenger-Side Occupant Position Detection System (OPDS) •
Side Curtain Airbags •
Driver's and Front Passenger's Active Head Restraints •
Vehicle Stability Assist™ (VSA®) with Traction Control •
Collision Mitigation Braking System™ (CMBS™) •
Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) •
Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD) •
Brake Assist •
Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) •
Daytime Running Lights (DRL) •
Side-Impact Door Beams •
Outboard Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children (LATCH) •
Child-Proof Rear Door Locks •
Emergency Trunk Release •


Roof-Mounted Antenna •
Aluminum Alloy/Resin Aerodynamic Wheels •
Security System •
Remote Entry System with Trunk Release •
Variable Intermittent Windshield Wipers •
Body-Colored Power Side Mirrors •
Satin-Finish Door Handles •
High-Intensity Discharge (HID) Headlights •
Combination LED Brakelights •
Aluminum Hood/Trunk/Fenders/Doors •


Dual-Zone Automatic Climate Control System •
Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation SystemTM with Voice Recognition and Rearview Camera •
Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink® * •
Interface Dial with Scrolling and Multi-Line Display •
Vehicle Start Button •
Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) •
HomeLink® Remote System ** •
Power Windows with Auto-Up/Down Driver's and Front Passenger's Windows •
Illuminated Power Window Switches •
Power Door Locks •
Illuminated Steering Wheel-Mounted Audio and Cruise Controls •
Steering Wheel-Mounted Navigation and Phone Controls •
Tilt and Telescopic Steering Column •
Beverage Holders, Front and Rear • Front Passenger's Illuminated Vanity Mirror •
Blue Ambient Console Lighting •
Map Lights • Sunglasses Holder •
12-Volt Power Outlet •
Lockable Glove Compartment with Light •
Driver- and Passenger-Side Seatback Pockets •
Remote Trunk Release •
Remote Fuel Filler Door Release •
Rear Window Defroster •
Cargo Area Light •
Floor Mats •
Side Door Pockets •

*HomeLink® is a registered trademark of Price Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of Johnson Controls™ **The Bluetooth word mark and logos are owned by the Bluetooth SIG, Inc., and any use of such marks by Honda Motor Co., Ltd., is under license.


Honda Bio-Fabric-Trimmed Interior •
Heated and Cooled Front Seats •


AM/FM/CD Audio System with 6 Speakers •
MP3/Windows Media® Audio (WMA) Playback Capability •
XM® Radio * •
USB Audio Interface •

* Required XM® Radio monthly subscription sold separately after 90 day trial period.
Installation costs and other fees and taxes may apply after initial trial period, including a one-time activation fee. Subscription fee is consumer only. All fees and programming subject to change. Subscriptions subject to Customer Agreement available at xmradio.com. XM service only available in the 48 contiguous United States. The XM name is a registered trademark of XM Satellite Radio Inc.


Maintenance Minder™ System •
Digital Odometer and Digital Trip Meters (2) •
Door/Trunk-Open Indicators •
Exterior Temperature Indicator •
Instantaneous Hydrogen Consumption Meter 3-D Sphere
Hydrogen Fuel-Level Indicator •
Low Fuel Indicator •
Lithium-Ion Battery Charge and Assist Indicators •
Miles-to-Empty Indicator •

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