Clarity Plug-In Hybrid Underpowered for Touring Driving?

Discussion in 'Clarity' started by EVNovice, Jul 16, 2018.

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  1. JCEV

    JCEV Active Member

    Yeah it's quite dramatic in Toronto . converted to Gallons we pay 5.10 per gallon. Only avg of around 8 cents kwh. So we are looking at close to 190 to 200mpg equivalent. It's quite ridiculous here .
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  3. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    The general consensus of the forum if that the HV battery has a 17 kW capacity as stated by Honda but all other numbers are arrived at by real world experience and some informed assumptions.
    The full 17 kW capacity is not available for use in order to protect the battery and This is a universal maxim and strategy of all EV mfgs. This is reflected in the fact that the maximum charge from the EVSE has been reported by many to be ~14.4 kW. That number is what you will multiply by your local utility rate for the time at which you will charge. So yes your electric bill will go up a little bit your gas bill will go down a lot. A lot!

    There is one other fact to mention, but it does not affect your charging costs. The EVSE and charger in the car in the process of taking 120v or 240v AC power from your house and charging the individual HV batteries to 3.xx volts is not 100% efficienct so less kWs actually go into the battery packs. Some have speculated based on other non-Clarity sources that the efficiency may be 80 to 90%. The post I tend to go with said 86%. Then 86% of 14.4 kw means we’re only using ~12.2kw of our 17 kW battery which is ~72%. This would then how much “cushion” we think Honda uses at the top and bottom of the state of charge (SOC) to ensure battery longevity and is why at 0 EV range you still have 2 bars on the gauge.

    So bottom line. EV is way less expensive in many ways (cost per mile, reduced maintenance, etc) than ICE and Honda appears to have done an excellent job with our BMS (battery management system). So charge away and drive away with no worries.
  4. kent335

    kent335 Member

    I'm not sure what other people are seeing, but when I charge using the 120v EVSE provided by Honda, I'm getting about 80% efficiency. In other words, I have to draw 18 KwH in order to put 14.4KwH into the battery. I'm getting about 92% efficiecy using a Siemens 32A 240V EVSE at my house. You should take into account recharge losses into your analysis as well. Unfortunately, I live in California, in an area serviced by Pacific Gas and Electricity (PG&E), so electricity is very expensive. The Electric Vehicle Time of Use Rate Schedule EVA from PG&E has electricity costing at 47.3c / 26c / 12.7c for Peak, Part-Peak and Off-Peak usage.

    Fortunately, I have solar panels so I "sell" generated power to PG&E at the 47.3c and the 26c rates. I draw power from PG&E at the 12.7c rate to recharge the car.
  5. PHEV Newbie

    PHEV Newbie Well-Known Member

    That provides a good expalanation why Claritys are in short supply in Canada. On the other hand, perhaps our Northern neighbors are just more rational than we are? Recent events certainly would support that view.
  6. Atkinson

    Atkinson Active Member

    Interesting factoid on battery conditioning that doesn't really apply much to the Clarity.
    Exception: Canadian Clarity's have a heater to condition the battery, I think US models do not.
    My wife's Bolt heats and cools the 60 Kw battery to maintain the designed temp range (like most EV's).
    Here's the thing, the Bolt uses the AC system to cool the battery coolant as needed if the radiator can't shed enough heat on it's own.
    When charging on a very hot day, I have seen the AC come ON just to cool the battery (car is OFF).
    My understanding is that the AC can also come on when driving (even if driver has AC turned OFF) if battery cooling is needed.
    Same with heating when charging on a very cold day, I can hear coolant gurgling and the charge does not start increasing for some time.
    These parasitic losses for battery conditioning when charging add to the efficiency losses (discussed above) from utility to battery.
    It's a little sad about the losses, but fascinating that someone engineered this in.
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  8. Viking79

    Viking79 Well-Known Member

    As long as you don't plan on exceeding 100 mph, it cruises very well, even with a flat battery. You will hear the engine more frequently.

    I cruised between 75-83 mph all day today with a flat battery (over 800 miles) and it got 41 mpg. No joke. I am totally blown away by this car. Couple short bursts to 95 were surprisingly quck to pass trucks on interstate to get out of way of faster cars from behind. Absolutely no power issue (100 hp at worst is plenty for cruising with up to around 200 for bursts unless you want to drive fast up steep long mountain passes, use HV Charge first).
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2018
    Johnhaydev likes this.
  9. I have a related question: some of the reviews (e.g. Consumer Reports) say that the gasoline engine is relatively noisy. Is this true on long trips when presumably the gas engine is running much/most of the time?
    Johnhaydev likes this.
  10. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    Not true at all if you have about 1/3 to 1/2 charge on that battery. I have never had the ICE rev loudly, even on a long strep hill climb. At the end of that climb it reved up to a moderate hum and not the “angry bees”. On fairly level Interstate I only heard a barely audible fast idle. You will only get the loud high reving angry bees ICE in certian HV situations if and only if the battery is completely depleated in my experience. I have an hour meter installed and on a 500 mile round trip the ICE cycled on and off repeatedly and ran quietly about 2/3 is the total trip while giving me 49 mpg (70 mph Interstste and 60-70 hilly side roads). This is the quietest car I have ever driven.
  11. Atkinson

    Atkinson Active Member

    The engine gets thrashy when the battery has been drained and you are driving at low speeds with heavy throttle demand.
    If the battery is very low and you drive normally, the engine still quiet.
    Under normal loads, the engine runs around 2000 RPM when needed.
    If the battery is low and the engine is the sole power source AND you demand heavy acceleration, the engine will need to rev to 3000 RPM or beyond.
    I have tested this scenario, but there is no reason to experience it unintentionally.
    In other words, you have to try hard to make the engine noisy.
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  13. Thank You! This is very helpful.
  14. Thanks!
  15. ClarityAlex

    ClarityAlex New Member

    99% of the time I've also found the engine is very quiet. Often I'll be cruising on the freeway when EV mode switches off and the engine starts, and it is so quiet I don't even notice except that the "EV" light turns off on the dash. In regular traffic it sounds like an average car engine. I particularly like driving on country roads in EV mode - its oddly satisfying just hearing the electric motors humming as you accelerate.

    That being said, I have experienced the loud engine sound suddenly a few times. It only seems to happen in the winter as I haven't heard it in a few months. It would only happen when cruising around 120kph (75mph) when the battery runs out and the engine starts. It revs up pretty loudly, I'd guess around 4-5000rpm, and holds there for about 30 seconds, then calms back down to normal. Slowing down makes it quiet down faster. My only guess is the computer wants to warm up the engine as fast as possible. I really don't know, but I have to trust that the programmers knew what they were doing. It was a bit unnerving the first couple times but this would be no reason to not buy the car.

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