Auto Show: 2013 La Auto Show
Honda FCEV Concept: LA Auto Show
What Is It?
The Honda Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle (FCEV) Concept is a futuristic car that previews the brand's direction for its next-generation fuel cell electric vehicle. While Honda stresses the FCEV is just a concept car, the futuristic model could replace the Honda FCX Clarity, the brand's current fuel cell vehicle that's offered only to shoppers in California.
Under the aerodynamic skin of the Honda FCEV Concept is a fuel cell stack that's around 33 percent smaller than the stack in the FCX Clarity. The result is that Honda can put the entire stack in the engine compartment. While that may not sound like a huge benefit, it means the rest of the FCEV Concept can offer more room for passengers and luggage.
In addition to a smaller fuel cell stack, Honda says the FCEV Concept boasts more power than the FCX Clarity, as well as a longer range. The FCEV Concept can travel around 300 miles on a single charge, compared to the FCX Clarity's 240 miles. Like the FCX Clarity, the 5-passenger FCEV Concept can be recharged in around three minutes.
Will They Ever Sell It?
Probably not in this form. The FCEV Concept offers futuristic styling and exciting design cues, but we find it hard to believe it will ever meet government regulations with this look. Still, the FCEV Concept likely previews Honda's next attempt at a fuel cell electric vehicle, which is expected in the next few years.
Why It's Important
Honda remains one of the few automakers to deliver hydrogen-powered fuel cell vehicles to its customers. The FCEV confirms Honda's continued presence in this unusual market segment, which involves only a few dozen shoppers annually. While that may not seem like many, the technology in the Honda FCEV Concept could become widespread, eliminating our dependence on gasoline and oil to power vehicles.