It's a rare opportunity for folks in Europe to see the Clarity Fuel Cell on the move.
Monaco’s narrow streets are home to some of the most powerful hypercars in the world. However, Prince Albert and Princess Charlene of Monaco eschewed a ostentatious display for their lap of honor at the beginning of the 2017 Formula 1 Grand Prix of Monaco, and instead they lapped the iconic city’s circuit in a Honda Clarity Fuel Cell.
The hydrogen-powered Clarity isn’t yet for sale in Europe, but Honda is staging a demonstration campaign through 2022 to show off its futuristic model. As part of the test, the company will put a total of 185 of the sedans on the road in Austria, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Sweden, and the United Kingdom.
The Clarity Fuel Cell manages an impressive range of 403 miles (650 kilomters) in the New European Driving Cycle test. However, the Environmental Protection Agency’s more stringent evaluation estimates the sedan can go 366 miles (589 km) with a full tank of hydrogen. The figure beats the Tesla Model S 100D’s 335-mile (539 km) EPA range and the 321 miles (516 km) that the hydrogen-fueled Toyota Mirai is capable of.
Like the Prince of Monaco, Motor1 Senior Green Car Editor Sebastian Blanco has also had the opportunity to get behind the wheel of the Clarity Fuel Cell. In the First Drive, he reports, “driving it feels like any other electric vehicle out there, with solid, linear acceleration.” The rival Mirai feels a little quicker under acceleration, though.
The Clarity Fuel Cell is currently available in the United States and Japan. Customers in the United States can lease one from select dealers in California for $369 a month and $2,868 due at signing. The offer also includes up to $15,000 of hydrogen refueling.
Customers in the rest of the U.S. will soon be able to experience the electric and plug-in hybrid versions of the Clarity, and they’ll both sell for around $35,000. The EV will arrive at dealers in California and Oregon later in 2017. The will use a 25.5-kilowatt-hour battery, and its range will possibly be as low as 80 miles.
The PHEV will be eventually available nationwid . It will feature a 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine and 17-kWh battery. The setup will offer an estimated 42-mile range when running only on electricity and will go around 330 miles in total.