LOS ANGELES — Honda's Clarity line of electrified vehicles has always been part comfortable sedan and part science experiment. That experiment will be over in August, when the automaker ends production of the plug-in hybrid and fuel cell versions.
With its bulbous front end and partially covered rear wheels, the Clarity's styling was anything but mainstream. The all-electric version, discontinued last year, had just 89 miles — or 143 kilometres — of range, and the fuel cell variant is available only near California hydrogen stations.
The plug-in hybrid offers 47 miles — or 75 km — of electric-only range and is a fairly common sight in California's carpool lanes that exempt low-emission vehicles from the two-passenger minimum.
Honda, which has been slow to embrace widespread electrification, has switched gears and said that it will rely more on hybrids and battery-electric vehicles as part of long-term product plans.
"We are evolving our strategy with a focus on increased application of our two-motor hybrid system to core models in advance of the introduction of our first volume BEV models in 2024," Honda said in a statement.
"Consistent with this strategy, Honda will conclude production of the Clarity Plug-In Hybrid and Clarity Fuel Cell in August 2021. This will ensure we have the Clarity Fuel Cell available for lease through 2022."