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Auto Show:  2011 Geneva Auto Show

Honda Fit EV Concept, FCX Clarity, and Other Jazz - Geneva Auto Show

author photo by Autotrader March 2011

March 8, 2011

Honda's mind is on saving the planet – and its offerings at the Geneva Auto Show certainly prove it. The Japanese automaker used the show to display a particularly eco-friendly lineup, including its new fully-electric EV Concept and a platform for future midsize plug-in hybrid vehicles.

According to Honda, the EV Concept hints strongly at the design of the automaker's upcoming fully-electric vehicle, the Fit EV. Honda says the all-electric Fit, which goes on sale sometime in 2012, will feature a 100-mile range and a three-mode electric drive system adapted from its new CR-Z hybrid. Upon debut, the Fit EV will have to vie for publicity – and sales – against the much-hyped Nissan Leaf and Chevrolet Volt, as well as a host of electric cars from other manufacturers such as Ford and Tesla.

The Geneva Auto Show also marked the debut of Honda's new plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) platform. Essentially a rolling chassis with electric motor components bolted on, Honda says the plug-in hybrid is designed specifically for midsize cars like its Accord sedan. The platform features Honda's new two-motor hybrid system, capable of being driven in fully-electric or gasoline modes, with regenerative braking helping to recharge its batteries. Honda says the two-motor hybrid system is capable long-distance, gasoline-powered hauls or short trips in electric mode, making it compatible with any driving style.

To further cement its "green" display at the Geneva show, Honda also showed off the remarkable FCX Clarity, a fuel cell vehicle produced in extremely limited numbers. The hydrogen-powered hatchback has been selectively available in the United States for lease since 2008, with around 20 on the road nationwide.

Honda's announcements at Geneva weren't specifically limited to green-themed projects. The automaker also showed off an updated Fit – known as the Jazz in Europe – featuring a continuously-variable automatic transmission (CVT). It's unknown whether the CVT will make it to the States, where the Fit is currently offered with a traditional five-speed automatic. Also given minor stylistic updates was the European-market Honda Accord, sold in the States as the Acura TSX.

JEFFREY ARCHER is fortunate to have turned a passion for cars into a career. His wide-ranging automotive experience includes work for automakers and dealers in addition to covering the news. When not writing, he spends his time searching for unique cars on

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Honda Fit EV Concept, FCX Clarity, and Other Jazz - Geneva Auto Show - Autotrader