There’s a new trend in town – use a platform to underpin all the ecological versions of a given model. Hyundai’s Ioniq is a prime example of this approach, pills but so will be Honda soon.
Ford is rumored to do the same with a bespoke platform underpinning the future Model E line-up that will be used to replace the current C-Max Hybrid, C-Max Energi plug-in hybrid, and Focus Electric. While Hyundai and Ford will be using specific platforms intended solely for the use of the green models in hybrid, plug in hybrid and battery electric modes, the Japanese automaker will carve its own path. Instead of spending on another platform it will simply use the one underpinning the Clarity and build a lineup around it. Since we already know the Clarity is a fuel cell, the other two options will be almost just as green – a battery electric and a plug-in hybrid version. With the Clarity FCV already in dealerships in certain markets, the new electric and plug-in hybrid versions will make the Clarity another industry first – the first vehicle to come with electric, fuel cell and plug in hybrid versions. It has been tipped to bring the latter versions in the United States sometimes in 2017, with the Clarity Electric hitting showrooms first. Honda has commented the latter will be affordable but still bringing “premium content and features.”
The final derivation to go on sale will be the Clarity Plug-In Hybrid which is scheduled for complete availability in all 50 states later on next year – Honda of course believes this will be the best-seller and has already hinted the electric-only range will be of more than 40 miles. We’ll know more about the new duo closer to the actual launch but Honda has already said they will come equipped with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay and Honda Sensing driver assistance systems.