We’re spending 12 months with this Honda Clarity, reviewing the fat ownership expertise with ongoing updates. Also, uncover why we named the Honda Clarity Whisk-within the Perfect Capture in its class for 2019.  

10,000-mile evaluation of our Honda Clarity PHEV

by Michael Harley on Would possibly maybe maybe well 29, 2019

Most modern Odometer: 10,326 miles 


Most modern MPG: 147.33 MPG 


Lifetime MPG: 96.05 MPG 


Upkeep/Provider Funds: $96.46 


Day out of Provider: 0 days

Our long-time period 2019 Honda Clarity PHEV breezed by map of the 10,000-mile impress rather without disaster over the Memorial Day vacation, mute sipping gasoline on the rate of a trickle — lawful like it has since becoming a member of our immediate in early January. Through mechanical operation, it has been fully flawless. It drives as smoothly and quietly as it did on its supply date, and the roomy cabin is thoroughly freed from squeaks and rattles. We proceed to be impressed by its gasoline efficiency (now we beget got best possible pumped 99.77 gallons into its tank since arrival!) and composed, mild streak. The passenger cabin is superior for four adults, and the trunk will without disaster swallow suitcases for every of these occupants, with room to spare. The negatives consist of a lack of lumbar enhance on the entrance seats, no “auto” environment for the windshield wipers, and the maddening infotainment system — we’ve begrudgingly realized to adapt to the dearth of the quantity knob. And, we would moreover love to secret agent the differ on battery and gasoline prominently (and completely) displayed straight aside every escape cluster gauge — as of now, that that you simply can maybe maybe also must toggle to acquire that data on the cluster, which is cumbersome. 

,

Honda Clarity demonstrates its impressive utility

by Michael Harley on Would possibly maybe maybe well 22, 2019

Most modern Odometer: 9,827 miles


Most modern MPG: 89.89 MPG


Lifetime MPG: 93.56 MPG


Upkeep/Provider Funds: $96.46


Day out of Provider: 0 days

One big complaint about hybrid vehicles is compromised utility. The gargantuan energy-storing battery packs delight in up precious build aside. To be ready to care for the passenger footwell, most automakers preserve end to situation the battery pack between the rear seat and trunk. It’s a intrepid effort, but it completely in general potential that the abet seats don’t fold, and any streak-by map of opportunity is lost. And, in a worst-case tell, trunk build aside is moreover compromised.

That’s no longer the case with the Clarity, which became a tidy-sheet invent. The engineers knew that they’d be releasing PHEV and gasoline cell fashions that may maybe maybe maybe require build aside for batteries and hydrogen storage tanks. Constructed with these necessities in mind, the Clarity offers identical utility to most outdated faculty sedans, and the Honda can carry rather impartial a small of cargo with its 2d row of seats folded.

While rebuilding my facet fence, the perambulate yard called and said my report became in. I became within the Clarity, so I swung by thinking I would acquire the rate and carry a wiser automotive abet the subsequent day to preserve dwelling the weight. Nevertheless, after having a gaze on the perambulate and visually gauging the automotive’s potential, I instantaneous that the workers load it into the Clarity – extra than 100 linear feet of 10”x1” wood planks! Unprecedented to everyone’s astonishment, it match! 

,

First Provider at Honda of Thousand Oaks is Impressive

by Michael Harley on April 30, 2019

Most modern Odometer: 8,373 miles


Most modern MPG: 131.79 MPG


Lifetime MPG: 95.82 MPG


Upkeep/Provider Funds: $96.46


Day out of Provider: 0 days

Miles on the Clarity PHEV are amassing at a rate nearing 80 miles-per-day, which suggests its electrons were working beyond normal time. Two weeks ago, its carrier mild illuminated because the 4-door demanded its first oil alternate and inspection (“query” is an lawful observe, because the disturbing “Provider Light” glared at us on every occasion we hit the ignition button).  Moderately than preserve the Clarity to a dealership end to our Irvine headquarters, we introduced it to Honda of Thousand Oaks, which is ready 85 miles northwest of Kelley Blue E book – the expertise became out of the ordinary.

We arrived on the dealer an hour early for our 10: 00 AM appointment, but one other carrier consultant gladly helped us out – and arranged for the dealership’s shuttle to pressure us 11 miles dwelling! All programs are supreme with the Clarity, so all we wanted became an oil alternate (Honda Corpulent Synthetic 0W-20) with a brand modern filter, tire rotation, and inspection. We picked-up the freshly-washed Clarity that afternoon and paid the cheap $96.48 invoice. There became no ready on both discontinue of the transaction, no strive to promote us one thing questionable (e.g., blinker fluid), and nothing but smiles from everyone we came in contact with – we wish all dealership companies and products were this straight forward.   

,

EV differ is solely tempo and congestion dependent

by Michael Harley on April 3, 2019

Most modern Odometer: 6,061 miles


Most modern MPG: 142.71 MPG


Lifetime MPG: 88.64 MPG


Upkeep/Provider Funds: $0


Day out of Provider: 0 days

After three months, and additional than 6,000 miles, I’m initiating to achieve how PHEVs work – in particular with regards to how they delight in battery energy.

Honda touts an EV-best possible differ of 47 miles, but that’s nothing but a ballpark estimate – differ is tempo and congestion (aka braking regeneration) dependent. If I soar on the highway without any web page visitors, my EV-best possible differ is lawful over 30 miles. But, if I take a seat in bumper-to-bumper web page visitors, I in actuality beget covered 56 miles without hearing the combustion engine firing up.

Ambient temperature moreover plays a huge feature on the recount of the battery. In no longer-so-frigid Southern California, the automotive would showcase an EV-best possible differ of 38 miles in January (in a single day temperatures within the mid-40s). This morning, with temperatures 20 degrees hotter, it confirmed a fat fee differ of 45.6 miles (nonetheless, it traveled 33.7 miles sooner than the battery became exhausted because my average tempo became extra than 70 mph).

That is also exciting to secret agent how the battery fares in our triple-digit summer season.   

,

Flying buttress console isn’t the correct leg leisure

by Michael Harley on March 22, 2019

Most modern Odometer: 5,282 miles


Most modern MPG: 74.77 MPG


Lifetime MPG: 85.04 MPG


Upkeep/Provider Funds: $0


Day out of Provider: 0 days

Honda’s interior designers may maybe maybe also mute be complimented for the expansive and classy interior realized within the Clarity because everyone who climbs into the 5-situation cabin remarks how jubilant and functional the passenger appointments are… other than one minor annoyance. The unfamiliar flying buttress center console, which offers very purposeful storage under the digital shifter, widens as it touches the bottom of the dashboard (it is an lovely element). In doing so, it becomes a in actuality natural situation to leisure the driving force’s lawful knee – in particular if over six-foot immense. Sadly, the orderly on both facet of the console is stressful, so it offers fully zero give in phrases of cushioning. While it’s no longer a tell for an spherical-the-city outing, it does become an irritation because the hours streak at some level of a protracted pressure. And, for the file, one other Honda Clarity owner in our place of job only within the near past talked about the identical complaint. 

,

Finding out to enjoy the bustle-button shifter

by Michael Harley on March 13, 2019

Most modern Odometer: 4,498 miles


Most modern MPG: 74.08 MPG


Lifetime MPG: 84.61 MPG


Upkeep/Provider Funds: $0


Day out of Provider: 0 days

Honda equips all Clarity fashions with a push-button (PRND) shifter, a invent that takes a futuristic leap some distance from the outdated faculty lever-operated (PRNDL) shifters which were salubrious to most vehicles with a console-mounted transmission selector for the past loads of a protracted time. Honda, and various automakers with this invent, argues that this modern digital interface will be extra optimally placed on the dashboard because they aren’t harassed by a centrally-mounted cable that ought to be connected to the transmission housing – this moreover frees up purposeful trusty property on the center console.

Truth be knowledgeable, I firstly didn’t love the modern invent that Honda (and Acura) spend because the mixture of push and pull levers and buttons were one thing but intuitive. But some automakers are now rolling out even less instinctive – acquire that bordering on unhealthy – digital shift levers (RND) with a lever that repeatedly returns to center after being delicately bumped fore-and-aft (the 2019 Audi Q8, 2019 BMW 3 Assortment, and 2020 Porsche 911 reach to mind).

After sampling these infuriating shift levers, which require having a gaze for a small indicator on the escape for affirmation, I’ve decided that the Clarity’s illuminated push-button (PRND) shifter, with a in actuality certain engagement motion, in all fairness acceptable. 

,

Always allow the Clarity to put together its powerplant

by Michael Harley on February 25, 2019

Most modern Odometer: 3,842 miles


Most modern MPG: 80.81 MPG


Lifetime MPG: 86.02 MPG


Upkeep/Provider Funds: $0


Day out of Provider: 0 days

As talked about in an update on January 27, Honda puts an “EV” button on the Clarity’s dashboard that lets within the driving force to manually put together the battery consumption — press it, and the recount-of-fee is held. After noting that top-tempo utilizing requires an dreadful lot of battery energy (which suggests my fat battery fee is in general consumed within the first 30 miles of my shuttle), I made a decision to manually retain watch over the powerplant at some level of one in every of my morning treks and “beat” the computer — it in general runs best possible on battery till it is depleted, which then starts the combustion engine. My luxuriate in logic said it will also mute be optimum to make spend of the battery/motor within town cycle and spend the engine solely on the high-tempo LA freeways. So, I did lawful that (manually toggling the EV button trusty by map of the pressure) and my gasoline economy became 68.8 MPG — no longer wicked, I notion. I then did the identical pressure the subsequent morning and allowed the Clarity to automatically put together its hybrid powertrain. It returned 78.2 MPG — the computer beat me by extra than 10 percent! Looking back, I’ve realized that the Honda will shut down its combustion engine at some level of coasting and when it’s no longer wanted at low speeds (even supposing the battery reveals that it is depleted, there may maybe be mute a minimum fee remaining for these sessions). Lesson realized: Always allow the Clarity to put together its powerplant. 

,

Playing the silence

by Michael Harley on February 15, 2019

Most modern Odometer: 2,839 miles


Most modern MPG: 107.03 MPG


Lifetime MPG: 92.21 MPG


Upkeep/Provider Funds: $0


Day out of Provider: 0 days

All americans is conscious of that electric vehicles acquire best possible minimal noise whereas they’re working – electric motors are only about mute. But this silence is in general a downside at highway speeds as on the sphere of all EVs are at chance of tense wind and tire noise that makes its map into the cabin (these sounds are in most cases masked by rumbling yell notes in combustion vehicles). Honda’s engineers beget long past to mountainous lengths to diminish the noise penetrating the cabin of the Clarity. First, they paid end consideration to aerodynamics to acquire certain buffeting across the windshield’s A-pillar and exterior mirrors became minimal. 2d, they isolated the suspension system and set aside extra acoustic insulation within the wheel wells. Lastly, they laminated the glass on the entrance doors – it is literally two layers of tempered glass with a layer of sound deadening field fabric sandwiched within the center. The outcomes of these extra efforts are nothing attempting perfect – the Honda Clarity PHEV is one in every of the quietest vehicles that I in actuality beget ever driven. 

,

Gas economy in a PHEV is in each situation

by Michael Harley on February 5, 2019

Most modern Odometer: 1,740 miles


Most modern MPG: 76.91 MPG


Lifetime MPG: 87.05 MPG


Upkeep/Provider Funds: $0


Day out of Provider: 0 days

Save that I earned “best possible” 76.91 MPG on my most recent tank of gasoline with our long-time period Clarity. Considering about that the tank as we exclaim sooner than this one returned an perfect 156.50 MPG, my preliminary notion became that one thing became damaged. But everything with this Honda is supreme (lawful down the tire pressures, which I take a look at weekly).

Because it appears to be like, here is merely the style PHEVs ship gasoline economy; it is 100-percent in line with the segment distance traveled on every outing.

If I end dwelling for a protracted weekend (no shuttle), plugging the Clarity in on every occasion it’s in my driveway, I obtained’t spend the combustion engine at all. I’m capable of streak 5 or six fat days, striking 80 miles a day on the Honda, without drinking one plunge of gasoline. Nevertheless, my morning shuttle repeatedly requires the engine to thrill in about a gallon of gasoline, and that hurts gasoline economy.

Some of us may maybe maybe also luxuriate in a Clarity and under no circumstances spend gasoline. Others, love myself, will spend it continuously. Even so, earning an average of on the sphere of 77 MPG on a tank of gasoline is jaw-droppingly impressive!

,

EVs end no longer love high speeds

by Michael Harley on January 27, 2019

Most modern Odometer: 971


Most modern MPG: 120.75 MPG


Lifetime MPG: 79.56 MPG


Upkeep/Provider Funds: $0


Day out of Provider: 0 days

In normal PHEV formulation, the Honda Clarity (in default mode) consumes the fee in its battery pack sooner than igniting the combustion engine looking for additional electricity for propulsion. That said, the EPA charges the Honda’s battery pack at “47 miles,” which leads most to think that the Clarity will quilt 47 miles in EV mode sooner than desiring to thrill in gasoline – but this isn’t the case. On my very early morning 98-mile shuttle across the LA Basin, which has me cruising congestion-free with a float of vehicles at upwards of 80 mph, I’m lucky to acquire 30 miles out of the battery (the whole absence of web page visitors potential there may maybe be zero regenerative braking). Nevertheless, if I’m going away the place of job at some level of evening bustle hour I in actuality beget seen 52 miles of differ in EV mode (credit end to-continuous regenerative braking and vastly lowered aerodynamic dash). The lesson realized is that electric-best possible propulsion is comely spherical city and at low speeds when regenerative braking is consuming. At high speeds that that you simply can maybe maybe also very well be doing nothing but struggling with the wind and drinking electrons at an alarming rate. But, in a rather impartial correct streak, Honda’s engineers beget set aside impartial a small button on the dashboard (labeled “HV”) that lets within the driving force to “establish” the battery’s fee for when it is supreme. Cease tuned, as I may manually retain watch over my energy consumption on an upcoming shuttle.  

,

Welcome dwelling – meet my Level 2 charger

by Michael Harley on January 20, 2019

Most modern Odometer: 276 miles


Most modern MPG: New


Lifetime MPG: New


Upkeep/Provider Funds: $0


Day out of Provider: 0 days

It’s some distance that that that you simply can maybe maybe also factor in, and thoroughly acceptable, to perambulate the Honda Clarity PHEV trusty into an ordinary 120-volt wall outlet and recharge its battery in a single day. This “Level 1” charging is how I’ve been charging electric press vehicles at my dwelling for a substantial amount of years. Spirited as a lot as a extra vital 240-volt “Level 2” charger, which is moreover dwelling user expedient, thoroughly adjustments the sport. A Level 2 system delivers charging speeds which may maybe maybe maybe be about 5 times sooner, which suggests PHEVs love the Honda Clarity PHEV will be introduced abet to a fat battery recount in fewer than three hours. I’m overjoyed that an EV owner must acquire the small investment (about $1,000 – after rebates and incentives) for a dedicated Level 2 charger at their dwelling, so I had one installed in my garage over the holidays. I chosen a ChargePoint Dwelling unit, with a 25-foot wire, as it’s easy to invent (Amazon) and it offers a smartphone app that lets within the user to agenda and video show the charging assignment. This implies I’m capable of agenda the Clarity to best possible fee at some level of times when electricity is the cheapest – taking reduction of its shorter fee time to make spend of these discounted dwelling windows. 

,

Introduction

by Michael Harley on January 15, 2019

A 2019 Honda Clarity perambulate-in hybrid electric automotive (PHEV) joined the Kelley Blue E book immediate this month, promising a twelve months of efficient EV-operation and hybrid gasoline economy. The modern household sedan boasts an modern aluminum-intensive chassis and one in every of the most refined powertrains within the marketplace, which is best possible phase of the motive it obtained the Kelley Blue E book “Electric/Hybrid Automobile Perfect Capture of 2019” award.

Aerodynamic exterior and an opulent interior

“Futuristic and functional, distinctive and efficient.” That’s how Honda describes the Clarity. Dimensionally very end to the Honda Accord sedan, the exterior of the Clarity is amazingly aero targeted — distinctive styling has been engineered to support the PHEV “fulfill its mission as a tech-savvy, energy-efficient and image-leading automotive,” says the automaker. The low-dash invent aspects air intakes sooner than every wheel to invent “air curtains” that decrease turbulence across the wheel openings, a fat stomach pan to diminish dash, and partial tire coverings over the rear wheels to care for the air transferring smoothly and freely. It goes without pronouncing that the Clarity looks nothing love the Accord. In level of truth, the Clarity looks nothing love one thing else on the avenue.

The passenger cabin has been designed to accommodate four six-foot immense adults, or 5 in a pinch, with high-rate materials, match, and assemble — have Acura stages of top rate appointments. The motive force faces a typical digital instrument panel with a outstanding energy meter taking center stage. There is a battery recount-of-fee showcase on the left and a gasoline tank gauge on the lawful. The 8-streak touch cowl cowl floating on the center of the escape is well positioned, but it completely lacks a quantity knob — this will doubtless be exciting to secret agent how that goes (for the file, Honda has addressed this and introduced the main knob abet to many of its fashions). The transmission is shifted by a button stack on the center of the center console, which rests atop a salubrious flying buttress — a shifter configuration that became first introduced by Acura. There are superior cup holders and storage build aside for telephones under the flying buttress.

Kelley Blue E book’s long-time period Clarity is a Touring model, in Photo voltaic Silver Steel, which is the differ-topping orderly. To boot to the frequent aspects equivalent to fat-LED lighting, Honda Sensing safety instruments, and an 8-speaker (180-watt) audio system, it provides navigation, leather upholstery, and energy seats with a reminiscence feature.  

Refined gasoline-electric hybrid powertrain

The Clarity utilizes two-motor hybrid expertise that combines a 1.5-liter Atkinson-cycle in-line 4-cylinder combustion engine, a starter/generator motor, and a 181-horsepower AC synchronous traction motor – whole system energy is a solid 212 horsepower. The electricity is saved in a 168-cell lithium-ion battery pack positioned under the passenger floor, which is rated at 17-kilowatt hour (kWh). The combustion engine sips from a 7-gallon gasoline tank, which is under the rear seat. While the gasoline tank requires nothing extra than frequent normal unleaded gasoline, Honda says the Clarity’s battery is optimally charged with a 240-volt Level 2 charger in about 2.5 hours. It may maybe in point of fact maybe maybe be replenished with an ordinary 120-volt wall charger in a single day.

Below most conditions, the Clarity PHEV runs off its electric motor that’s utilizing the two entrance wheels. But, if the driving force doesn’t set aside a query to for aggressive acceleration, the automotive will escape on nothing but electricity for speeds upwards of 100 mph. Above that, the combustion engine joins the celebration to ship even extra energy. Once the battery is depleted – the Clarity drives as a lot as 47 miles on EV by myself – the engine fires as a lot as generate electricity for the traction motor and propel the automotive.

And here is where issues acquire extra complex. Honda doesn’t spend a repeatedly variable transmission (CVT) to hyperlink the engine to the wheels, love most various automakers. As a substitute, the 1.5-liter engine is connected to the utilizing wheels by map of a straightforward single-tempo gearbox that’s lighter and some distance extra efficient than a CVT. Based mostly entirely entirely on tempo and cargo, the engine will pressure the wheels by myself or set aside a query to for support by sending electricity to the traction motor for added propulsion.

Three energy modes supply versatility, flexibility, and efficiency.

Honda offers the driving force rather impartial a small of retain watch over with regards to managing the powertrain, but extra in general than no longer it switches seamlessly between its propulsion modes automatically. If there may maybe be a fee remaining within the battery pack, the automotive will feature in EV Power mode – the engine is off and decoupled from the transmission to diminish friction. When the battery is end to-depleted, the Clarity will swap to Hybrid Power mode. Propulsion comes from the traction motor, which is being supplied energy from the gasoline engine turning the generator (extra energy is saved within the battery). At medium or high cruising speeds, the Honda switches to Engine Power mode. In this configuration, a lock-up grab lets within the engine to propel the automotive.

While there may maybe be no longer a must override the computer’s chosen pressure mode, Honda offers the automotive operator three driver-selectable working modes – Favorite, Econ, and Sport. Every is self-explanatory. A fourth mode, which is is named HV mode, lets within the driving force to withhold the battery’s recount of fee, or even fee the battery whereas the sedan is utilizing.

In accordance with the EPA, the Clarity PHEV earns an all-electric 110 MPGe mixed gasoline economy rating. Its gasoline-best possible rations are 44/40/42 MPG (city/highway/mixed). In idea, the mixture of a 47-mile electric and an approximate 300-mile combustion differ may maybe maybe also mute add as a lot as about 350 miles between have faith-ups. Nevertheless, our expertise reveals that most perambulate-in hybrids ship a lot greater differ after they’re charged on every occasion they’re parked.

Our twelve months-long take a look at and Clarity pricing

The 2019 Honda Clarity PHEV joins a four-particular person household household, where this will doubtless be faded as a stylish driver for carpools, running spherical, and hauling the household in each place the LA Basin. And, this will doubtless be compelled to undergo a two-hour pressure to work — 98 miles every map. This may maybe maybe also mute showcase an comely opportunity to secret agent how well the Clarity delivers comfort and efficiency at some level of the each day shuffle.

The 2019 Honda Clarity PHEV starts with a heinous designate of $34,320 (at the side of $920 vacation dilemma), but our long-time period 2019 Honda Clarity PHEV Touring has a heinous designate of $37,520 (at the side of $920 vacation dilemma). 

KBB.com Editors