(Last Updated On: January 21, 2019)
It shouldn’t be surprising that Honda makes an electric car that receives strong reviews. The automaker is known for making daily drivers and commuter vehicles that, while not flashy or very exciting, always get the job done. Honda is one of the most trusted names in the automotive world, with well-designed vehicles built to last for decades, and get you from Point A to Point B with minimal fuss.
Ultimately, that’s what they accomplished the the Clarity, their big foray into fully electric vehicles. The Clarity is an electric option that really embodies everything that makes a Honda a Honda.
Interesting and unique features for Honda Clarity buyers and owners
The Honda Clarity has a few different buying options, and it’s important for potential owners to know what they’re getting with this vehicle. The base model of the clarity is actually a plug-in gas-electric hybrid, not a full hybrid vehicle. But the company also offers the Clarity Electric, a fully electric option, as well as the Clarity Fuel Cell, a hydrogen-powered option.
So, it goes without saying that you really get to choose which model Clarity is best for you. While the plug-in hybrid option is a great vehicle, we’re only covering fully electric vehicles here, so we’re going to only focus on the Clarity Electric and Clarity Fuel Cell.
The Clarity Electric gets a modest EPA-estimated 89 miles per a charge. The Clarity Fuel Cell, on the other hand, rolls in with a remarkable 366 EPA-estimated miles per charge. Not bad at all.
However, potential buyers have limited options, despite the three models. The Clarity Electric is only available in California and Oregon, while the Clarity Fuel Cell can only be had in California. Both models are unavailable for purchase, and can only be leased. For what it’s worth, the plug-in hybrid Clarity is available in all 50 states, and can be purchased.
Maintenance tricks and important information
There’s not too much to know about the Clarity Electric and Clarity Fuel Cell maintenance just yet. The plug-in hybrid version of the Clarity is still a lot more popular, so most of Honda’s maintenance is focused on that version.
Still, we do know that the maintenance needs are minimal, and centered almost entirely around the battery. Aside from basic maintenance such as wheel rotations and brake work (the latter being less frequent than with a gasoline vehicle), the Clarity Electric and Clarity Fuel Cell only require very simple battery inspections and battery coolant replacement, which don’t need to be done regularly.
With a 240 volt outlet, the Clarity Electric can charge fully in just over three hours. When using a DC Fast Charging system, that car needs only 30 minutes to near a total charge. The Clarity Fuel Cell is even more impressive. It gets pumped with hydrogen, and is fully charged in about five minutes. So with the Clarity Fuel Cell you’re getting the range of a gasoline vehicle, with the fill up time of a gasoline vehicle as well. That’s pretty perfect.
The Clarity Fuel Cell, while primarily relying on fuel cells, also uses a standard battery, which is located between fuel cell and the seats. This battery aids performance by kicking in when you’re accelerating. The battery is very small and runs out of juice quickly, but the Clarity uses the fuel cell to recharge the battery quickly. This multi-power system gives you the best of both worlds: the performance of a strong electric vehicle, and the range and practicality of a fuel cell car.
Both the Clarity Electric and the Clarity Fuel Cell are pretty heavy; that’s just the result of having big batteries and fuel cells. But you really wouldn’t know that the cars are heavy. They accelerate pretty well for a vehicle in their class, and brake impressively. And the allocation of the battery weight, low on the vehicle, allows for a tight grip to the road, and strong handling. The Clarity models aren’t going to win any awards for sportiness, but they are pretty nice to drive.
Unfortunately, the design of the Clarity is pretty clunky. Both the Clarity Electric and Clarity Fuel Cell look like they’re trying a little too hard to be modern, and just look unfinished and oddly angled. However, aesthetics are subjective, so if this is your thing, then march onward!
Top 5 accessories for the Honda Clarity
If you’re going to purchase a Clarity Electric or Clarity Fuel Cell, you’ll want to add some accessories, to make sure that you get the most out of your vehicle. To help you with that, we’ve made a list of our five favorite accessories for the Clarity line.
We think that sunshades are really important. In case you’re not feeling the same way, let’s tell you why. Sunshades go on the inside of the windshield, and protect your vehicle’s interior from direct sunlight. The main reason for this is because sun quickly wears out your car’s interior. Direct exposure to sunlight will wear out the leather or fabric in your vehicle, on the seats, the dashboard, the panels, the steering wheel, and the center console. The more you let your interior be exposed to sun, the more you’ll begin to see fading.
Fading in your interior is problematic for two different reasons. For starters, it simply doesn’t look good. You won’t be happy with the way your interior looks. And second, fading in your interior will quickly drive down your resale price. Before you know it, your car simply won’t be worth what it could be if you keep it protected.
This HeatShield sunshade is a terrific product that offers maximum protection from the sun. There are minimal gaps in the coverage, and the sunshade is thick enough to not let any light creep through. It’s even strong enough to keep your seats from turning into stove burners on a hot day, which is an added benefit that we really appreciate.
This sunshade has a layer of closed-cell foam, with clear polyester film in the back. Stitching and cloth make this product durable even when stretched, and it’s easy to fold up and store. If you care about maintaining the quality of your Clarity’s interior, this is the product for you.
You can buy the HeatShield sunshade here.
Honda Clarity 5-Layer Car Cover
Just like you want to keep the interior of your car cared for, you need to keep the exterior in good shape, as well. We have a car cover for all of our cars, and that’s especially important with a Honda Clarity, which is a relatively new car, and therefore needs to be kept in good shape.
A car cover serves many purposes. It keeps your paint from harmful sun exposure that can cause fading and spotting. It keeps moisture and rain from getting onto the car, and limits the damage caused by salt or dirt in the air, as well as wind. And a car cover can prevent damage from occurring to your Clarity’s exterior from falling tree branches, sap, and bird droppings.
This product is made specifically for the Clarity line, so it fits the vehicle perfectly. A good fit is imperative, because it means that there’s little to no loose areas for the elements to get through. And while this car cover is waterproof, it’s also breathable, which means you can keep the car under the cover for a long amount of time, and you don’t have to worry about mildewing or condensation build up.
Putting the car cover on, and taking it off, is really easy. The cover uses an elastic hem, and comes with a four-way buckle strap. It also comes with a lock, and a storage bag, making it highly practical for wherever you go. If you’re getting a new Clarity Electric or Clarity Fuel Cell, you’ll want to keep the exterior in the best shape, both for your eyes, and for you wallet. This car cover is the way to do that.
You can buy the Honda Clarity 5-Layer Car Cover here.
Motor Trend Heavy Duty Rubber Car Floor Mats
Above all else, the Honda Clarity Electric and Fuel Cell models were designed to be practical. While the Clarity line has some sporty elements, the main purpose of the car is practicality. The focus is on the range it can get without spending a dollar at the gas station, and on the way it can comfortably, safely, and efficiently get you where you’re going.
You know what else is practical? Floor mats. Floor mats are one of the most practical accessories that you can find for your car. They keep the interior of your car from getting dirty, and keep damage from dirt, mud, and liquid from occurring. This not only keeps your car looking clean and fresh inside, but ensures that your resale value will stay as high as possible.
These rubber mats fit perfectly in the Clarity line, with a mat for each of the front seats, and a large mat for the back seat area. The rubber mats are temperature resistant, so they won’t be bothered by snow, greenhousing, or spilled coffee and tea (let’s be honest, it happens to all of us).
The rubber is eco-friendly, which is in line with the rest of the vehicle. It’s also odorless, which is a huge plus, as that isn’t the case with many rubber floor mats.
The mats are also incredibly durable. They’ll likely last you as long as your Clarity lasts, and you’ll never need to replace them. Add in the non-slip design that keeps the mats firmly in place, and the fact that they’re easy to remove and install (and can be hosed down), and you have a perfect way of keeping your Clarity’s interior clean.
You can buy the Motor Trend heavy duty rubber car floor mats here.
ChargePoint Home 32A Electric Vehicle Charger
If you purchase the Honda Clarity Electric, you’ll want to also purchase a home electric vehicle charging unit, so you can recharge your vehicle as soon as you get home. There are a lot of great options to choose from, but for the Clarity Electric we strongly recommend this charger from ChargePoint.
Safety is most important, and this charger is UL-listed. It has passed all the safety guidelines and recommendations, so you can charge your Clarity safely and securely, and not have to worry about it. That goes a long way for us, and should go a long way for you as well.
One of the best things about this charger is that it’s WiFi-enabled. That means that you can completely control the charger through an app in your smart phone or tablet. With the app you can turn on the charger, turn off the charger, and schedule charges, so that they occur when your electric expenses are lowest. You can also track the charging status of your vehicle, as well as your energy use, and get reminders when it’s time to charge. It’s a pretty genius system, and we’re very enamored with it.
This charging station needs to be hardwired. You can do this yourself if you’re comfortable with it, but we certainly recommend hiring a professional to handle installation for you.
The charging cable is 25 feet, which is a very nice length, and gives you the flexibility to mount the unit wherever you want, including outdoors, as the unit is weatherproof. With a cable that long, you can simply mount the charging station wherever is most convenient for you, and you don’t need to worry about parking right next to it when charging.
It’s a serious hassle to own an electric vehicle without having a charging station. The charges take a very long time, so you need to be strategic about when you drive and when you charge. With this charging station, you can get rid of much of this hassle.
You can buy the ChargePoint home 32A electric vehicle charger here.
Bearfire Wireless Car Door LED Welcome Laser Projector Logo
This accessory is for the people who like to add a little fun and flair to their vehicle. If you’re really into your Honda Clarity Electric or Clarity Fuel Cell, then you may want to show it off a little bit. If that’s the case, then this is the product for you.
These car door LED projectors attach to the inside of your car doors, just like standard door lights. When you open the door, the LED projectors will turn on, and display the Honda logo – very slick looking – on the ground next to the door. When you close the door, the lights will turn off.
Honda has a pretty strong following, so if you want to show off your pride, then this is definitely up your alley. The logo looks awesome, and shines through with crispness and clarity.
The lights are small, and very easy to install. They require no welding, no drilling, and no tools. What they do require is three AAA batteries to be powered, but they last a really long time.
These LED projector logos are not for everyone. They’re certainly not subtle, so they’re not a look that everyone likes. But they certainly look really cool, and the quality is definitely great. If what you want is to add some pizzazz and flair to your Clarity Electric or Fuel Cell, and want to show off that you have an awesome Honda every time that you open your car doors, then this two-piece set would be an awesome addition to your electric vehicle.
We think they look really great, especially when it’s dark out and you pull up next to a group of people. There’s a little bit of a Fast and the Furious feel to them, but that’s not exactly a bad thing, is it?
You can buy the Bearfire wireless car door LED welcome laser projector logo here.
The Honda Clarity line is a great line of cars. There’s the standard plug-in hybrid, the Clarity Electric and the Clarity Fuel Cell. The latter two don’t require any gasoline, but are also severely limited in terms of where you can buy them.
If you can get your hands on one of the fully electric or fuel cell vehicles, however, you’ll be really happy. These cars drive really well, and have all of the reliability, durability, and practicality that we’ve come to expect from Honda.
We’re not a huge fan of the style, but with 350 plus miles on the range of the fuel cell model, who are we to complain? Long story short, the line of cars are great, as are the five accessories listed above.