L.A. to Vegas and back

Discussion in 'Clarity' started by coutinpe, Jul 9, 2019.

  1. coutinpe

    coutinpe Active Member

    I have had my Clarity since the end of January but used it mostly for commuting to work (~20 miles) and short errands, almost all EV except short freeway segments. So I was excited to take it to its first long trip, 300 miles to Vegas. I filled the tank and charged full overnight. It gave me a range of 62 mi EV and 336 HV to a total of 404 miles total range. I started as usual in Eco mode and it ate like 10 miles EV range while getting to the nearest freeway 4 miles uphill. Then I hit HV and Sport to merge onto the freeway and kept driving between 70 and 75. I was concerned about charging in Vegas since I didn't know if I would be able to charge there, but to my surprise the EV range seldom went below 50 except when climbing up to Halloran Summit, and even then it only went down to 47. However, arriving in Barstow the tank was already halfway down so I refilled there (blessed hybrid). Anyways, upon arriving to Vegas the tank was already halfway again but the battery had still 50 EV miles! On the trip back, my friends allowed me to recharge so I went back to my 60 usual EV miles but when filling up at a nearby gas station, HV miles went up to only 282, leaving me with only 344 miles total range. I arrived back in Barstow with half the tank but still 52 miles EV. However, when leaving the pump, I forgot to reactivate the HV mode before hitting the freeway, but thankfully my sweet wife somehow noticed the EV miles on the display had gone down to 17 in less than 5 minutes! After switching to HV, the charge remained steady and even went up a couple of miles when I hit SPORT to pass several vehicles. I arrived home with 17 miles EV and 2/3 of the tank remaining. Strangely, after recharging overnight, I only got 52 miles EV range instead of the usual 60. Fuel economy was somewhere between 42 and 43 mpg.
    Take home lessons: 1) NEVER FORGET TO PRESS HV WHEN YOU RESTART AFTER STOPPING TO REFUEL. 2) Don't worry too much about battery charge in long drives. It will keep steady near 50 unless you run too fast or make a long climb, but it will recharge fast on the way down. You just need to worry about gas like with any other car (a slightly bigger tank would make life easier). 3) Range estimations seem to be heavily dependent on the way you did things last time.
    2002 likes this.
  2. coutinpe

    coutinpe Active Member

    Forgot to add: I didn't see any other Clarity on the way nor in Vegas. When my friends saw the car, their first reaction was "that looks like a damn spaceship!". Couldn't be happier...
    Johnhaydev likes this.
  3. Mowcowbell

    Mowcowbell Active Member

    Looks like you're finding out the range is just an estimate. I saw similar drops in the estimated range when I drove mine from OKC to Dallas a month ago.

    I find the 7 gallon tank has more range than I want to drive without a rest stop, so it's a non-issue for me.
  4. stacey burke

    stacey burke Active Member

    The EV is important to stay high during a trip. SOME run the EV to 0 then use HV or HV charge. If you know your trip is longer than the EV range, use HV from the start - right from the drive way. Each time you stop and gas, eat, turn the motor off for any reason, the EV range you have when you start the car again - the car will try to keep that range. So if you have several stops your EV range goes down... If you start with a full charge then it is very unlikely you will be out of EV when you need it on mountains, merging and passing.
  5. The Gadgeteer

    The Gadgeteer Active Member

    I live in NJ, the land of cheap gas, I find the 7 gallon tank to have less range than I what I am used to having. When I venture out to a nearby state I like making the round trip in one tank when possible.
  6. stacey burke

    stacey burke Active Member

    If you run short of gas, you do not need to fill the tank.. Put in a couple of gallons that is 100 more miles and not more than 50 cents more than at home.
  7. MrFixit

    MrFixit Active Member

    I agree completely...
    I think Honda made a fine trade when minimizing the size of the gas tank.
    Plenty of range while minimizing unneeded weight when using the car where it really shines (EV).
    4sallypat and Mowcowbell like this.
  8. I was in Vegas last Tuesday thru Saturday. Wish I had known!! :)

    I did fly both ways. :-(
    coutinpe likes this.
  9. stockae92

    stockae92 New Member

    newbie question, so HV is most efficient on the freeway? ECO would used the battery until its out of juice even on freeway?
  10. stacey burke

    stacey burke Active Member

    Again, if you know that your trip will be more than your EV range then use HV from the start of the trip. Other than that use EV for everything else.
    markc and coutinpe like this.
  11. Mark W

    Mark W Active Member

    For most people here, the thought is that if you don't have enough EV range for your trip, use HV as much as you have to. If you are driving both back roads and highway, use HV on the highway because it is more efficient there than on the back roads. If you are traveling 70 mph or over on the highway, this really sucks the battery quickly in EV.
    coutinpe and insightman like this.
  12. The Gadgeteer

    The Gadgeteer Active Member

    My rest stops are often not gas stations. I feel 3 more gallons capacity would have been doable and would keep more people happier. For those that like to stop at gas stations more often still can and those of us that want to drive over 400 miles between fill ups can if the tank was just a little bigger.
    All in all it is not a issue. The car is worth small changes in my habits.
  13. coutinpe

    coutinpe Active Member

    Believe me, I was looking for another Clarity as hard as safety allowed me. No luck... But that probably helped to achieve the devastating effect seeing my car had on my friends (driving a Lexus SUV...)
  14. coutinpe

    coutinpe Active Member

    Sure. If you attempt to drive at freeway speeds with Eco/EV you will run out of juice in no time. That was what happened to me because I got distracted and forgot to re-enable it after stopping for gas.
  15. MajorAward

    MajorAward Active Member

    This has happened to me on two occasions, and makes me angry with myself for forgetting, but also angry at Honda for not keeping HV active after restarts. Some of their logic is just baffling to me.
  16. Mowcowbell

    Mowcowbell Active Member

    Perhaps a Post-It note near the gear selector with a 'HV on?' note might prove helpful? :)

    I keep the gauge open with EV and HV range and it helps to remind me to re-engage HV mode after a rest stop.
    Ryan C and MajorAward like this.
  17. MajorAward

    MajorAward Active Member

    A post-it may be the answer, but now I wonder if there is a way to have a yellow post-it pop up on the center screen as a reminder, say like the Google Keep app. Anyone tried installing an app like this yet?
  18. ab13

    ab13 Active Member

    I believe the EPA rating is based on default vehicle setting, so not defaulting to EV mode (non HV) would result in a much different electric drive range rating.
  19. MajorAward

    MajorAward Active Member

    That completely makes sense from Honda's perspective. But sometimes I wish we/they didn't have so many overlords. The last place I lived in Texas had a HOA so strict you could not use concrete in your stone wall - had to be dry stacked. Even the plants in your yard had to be on the approved list. Then you have the VW dieselgate problem, so some regulation is needed. Balance is very hard.
    KentuckyKen likes this.
  20. MNSteve

    MNSteve Well-Known Member

    Perhaps picking nits, or maybe helping you understand the various modes.

    EV/HV/HV-charge come from one set of options. ECON/normal/SPORT come from a completely different set of options. Pick one from set A, and one from set B.

    So I think you meant "EV", not "ECO" in your question. Yes, if you're in EV (which you will be by default after starting if there is charge left in the battery) the default behavior of the car is to use the EV miles until the range goes to zero (there will be two bars left on the battery gauge on the panel) and then run in HV mode. What folks are saying is that they prefer to save their EV miles for in-town driving, so they manually switch to HV when on the highway, which maintains the amount of EV range. "Efficient?" Well, depends on your definition of the word. No, it's not efficient in the sense that you can end up getting to your destination with EV range remaining, so you've used more gasoline than you would have used if you had switched out of HV at exactly the right time to arrive with zero EV miles left. For some of us it's almost a game.

    The choice of ECON/normal/SPORT is completely independent of EV/HV/HV-charge and you can use any of the nine combinations. The main function of ECON/normal/SPORT is to change how pressure on the accelerator is mapped to energy use and when the engine starts, although there are a few other aspects (how ACC reacts, paddle braking, and climate control, for example).

    The bottom line is that you can just get in the car and drive, and it will take care of itself. If you want to impose your preferences on how the EV range is used, you can do that, at least to a point.
    markc, Ryan C and 2002 like this.

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