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Honda's hydrogen-powered Clarity goes on sale in Japan

The longest-range zero-emissions vehicle can also power your house for seven days.
Steve Dent, @stevetdent
March 10, 2016
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Hydrogen-powered cars are less efficient and environmentally friendly than EVs, but nobody can deny that they're more practical. Case in point is Honda's Clarity fuel-cell vehicle (FCV), which is now on sale to select buyers in Japan. Unlike EVs, which can go a maximum of around 270 miles (in the case of Tesla's Model S), the Clarity can run 750km (466 miles) on a tank of 70MPa compressed hydrogen. That's assuming you can find a hydrogen filling station -- there are only around 15 or so in the nation at the moment. Performance-wise, the 174-horsepower motor delivers a top speed of around 100 mph.

Honda is also releasing its answer to Tesla's home Powerwall as well, the Power Exporter 9000 (above). It's a generator that runs off the Clarity's hydrogen fuel and can provide power to the average home for up to seven days. Unlike the Powerwall, however, you can't charge it for free using solar panels -- the only way to top it up will be to bring the car to a hydrogen filling station. Nevertheless, it would allow you to use your car as a battery backup for your house or as a powerful, portable generator.

For the next year, Honda will only sell the Clarity to business and government agencies that have helped it in the past with hydrogen cars. During that period, it will gather data about how the car is being used and gauge the opinions of users. After that, it will start selling the vehicle to anyone who wants it in Japan. The vehicle will launch in the US and Europe by the end of 2016 for about $500 a month on a lease ($60,000 MSRP), a very similar cost to Toyota's FCV Mirai.
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