Thursday, October 28, 2010

Honda To Unveil New Electric Car at Los Angeles

honda-fcx-clarity

Production of Honda's FCX Clarity fuel cell car at the Honda New Model Center in Japan. The company says fuel cells are the long-term future, and is late with its electric car and plug-in hybrid plans.

In case you haven’t noticed, there’s a major automaker that doesn’t have a single vehicle on PluginCars.com’s list of upcoming plug-in hybrid and electric cars. It’s Honda.

That’s going to change on Nov. 17, when Honda unveils an all-new Honda electric vehicle concept at the 2010 Los Angeles Auto Show. The company will also reveal a plug-in hybrid platform showcasing the next-generation of Honda hybrid technology. In recent years, Honda has fallen behind the hybrid and electric competition—due to a number of unsuccessful new hybrid introductions and its mild hybrid technology (that assists a gas-powered engine but is generally incapable of providing electric power directly to the wheels).

Details about Honda’s EV and plug-in hybrid are sketchy, and probably won’t get much sharper when Honda President and CEO Takanobu Ito gives a press conference in Los Angeles. A few months ago, I spoke with Elmer Hardey, Honda’s senior manager of alternative vehicles, who told me, “The plug-in hybrid will be the size of the Honda Accord or larger." Hardey added that Honda’s electric and plug-in hybrid program will start with existing platforms, and then “quickly move to dedicated vehicles.”

PluginCars.com is heading down to L.A. for the show and will report details when they become available. The announcements should quickly reveal if Honda is seriously dedicated to entering the electric car market, or if it’s in “me too” mode.

source: plugincars