Stupid question... Thinking of buying a Clarity.

Discussion in 'Clarity' started by Hapex, Nov 25, 2018.

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  1. Hapex

    Hapex New Member

    I am beyond frustrated with my Tesla Model S after their latest software update ruined the car. When we bought the Tesla we were on the list for the Clarity Fuel Cell and Electric, but ruled them out b/c we didn't want to lease. The plug in did not exist yet.

    The VAST majority of our driving is local, so it would be very unlikely we would go over the 47 miles and we can charge up at home and have multiple free charging stations nearby.

    Traditionally it is not good to leave gas just sitting. If you spend a year and never get beyond the EV range, how does it handle that?

    It's unlikely this would be an issue b/c there is usually a few trips a year where we go a few hundred miles, but I was just wondering about this.
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  3. Eddgie

    Eddgie Active Member

    As you said, it is unlikely that you would actually go a year without using the gasoline engine, but that does not mean it could not happen.

    If you really do have this concern, then the best thing to do would probably occasionally run in HV mode for half a tank or something, then top off.

    Another option is to put in some fuel stabilizer (Sta-Bil). A 32 Oz bottle will treat up to 80 gallons of gas.

    I think though that the best plan would be to simply run some in HV mode; maybe enough to burn through a half a tank every 6 mo.
  4. insightman

    insightman Well-Known Member Subscriber

    It's certainly NOT a stupid question. There are people on this forum who have problems with their Clarity PHEVs that Honda does not seem to be able to solve. In the Clarity Issues thread, a pilot who calls himself Orbiter (is he a Space Shuttle pilot?) just said the issues he's read about on this forum have caused him to pass on the Clarity he was awaiting. Consumer Reports doesn't recommend the Clarity. The partisans on this forum disparage Consumer Reports for not consulting with us first (as if).

    Our Clarity has been fabulous over the past 50 weeks. Most people who post complaints on this forum still like their cars. No car is perfect, and the Clarity doesn't have all the bells and whistles that say, the new Accord, has.

    Regarding the longevity of gasoline, the Clarity PHEV's gas tank is pressurized, which extends the life of the gas. Other posters say to use a gas stabilizer, but we didn't do that for the more than 9 months before we visited a gas station for the first time. At a local electric car meet, I posted a sign on my Clarity PHEV saying it had been to the gas station the same number of times as all the 30 Teslas at the meet COMBINED! They ignored me and my solitary Clarity.

    Because the Clarity PHEV is a hybrid and because Honda provides a bunch of driving mode selections, I feel it's more engaging than a fully electric car, which I enjoy.

    Take a test drive AFTER you ensure the dealer has charged the battery. The Clarity is not as much fun when the soft hum of the engine reminds you you're not in EV drive mode. Worse is the loud "angry bees" if you're going uphill with a discharged battery. I've never heard the angry bees, personally, because I use the Clarity's modes to preserve my battery's charge for when I need it the most.
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2018
    leehinde, ClarityDoc and Hapex like this.
  5. Hapex

    Hapex New Member

    Do you think you would have to run it for a 1/2 a tank or might a mile or two in HV mode cover you?

    I had only test drove one Plug in Hybrid and it was very different. Basically any time you wanted power, it automatically went back to the gas engine, so if you floored it getting on the freeway, the gas engine would kick in. From what I have read, the Honda is designed differently and won't go to the gas engine unless it runs out of charge entirely or if you specifically set it (which from earlier posts it seems it likes to switch back to EV mode on its own).

    Our goal is to avoid the gas station as much as possible, but have it available as an option for longer trips, so this car seemed like a great option.
  6. Hapex

    Hapex New Member

    Thank you! That is an excellent response. We are going into Honda tomorrow and plan to do a test drive. Luckily we have 3 dealerships within 5 miles and one of them has the exact one we want (Touring model in green), although we are going to one in walking distance to test drive the not Touring just to see how it compares to the fuel cell one we tested about 18 months ago.

    Thanks for the tip on making sure it is charged. Even though we own 2 electric cars, (Tesla and Ioniq) I wouldn't have thought to ask that!
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  8. jdonalds

    jdonalds Well-Known Member

    Also the wintertime range will depend on your driving habits plus the ambient temperature. It may be that you could end up using some gas. Lately our range has dropped to 36 even though our Northern California Winters are mild.
  9. capt3450

    capt3450 New Member

    Yeah same here it's about 36-38 miles with full charge (level 2 charger) in last couple nights in Bay Area.
  10. Crota

    Crota Member

    There are also instances where my ICE will turn on even when I am at a full charge. I don't know why this happens or what is going on but I like to think the computer/engineers knew what they were doing when they designed the car. Every week I seem to lose about 5-10 HV range because of the ICE turning on. It maybe some maintenance mode to keep the gas/engine healthy and in check. (I park in a garage and the car stays warm all night) The car isn't perfect and there are going to be some things that annoy you. The touch screen display is slower than the Tesla one I imagine. All things aside though, the Clarity is a great car that I plan on having for quite a while.
  11. dnb

    dnb Active Member

    There have been some threads about this, but yes it is a kind of maintiance. If you ever turn on the ICE because you wanted to try out sport mode, or HV for a little way, or just floor it and go past the blue area, or even if you regen too much while at full battery the ICE will want to run for X minutes (15?), so the car will keep turning it on even if you don't think it should so it can complete that maintenance cycle.

    Thats what we've gathered anyway.
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  13. JackH

    JackH Member

    On the Clarity there is an indent on the gas peddle. When running in EV plus ECO mode if you press on the gas past the indent the ICE will come on. It will stay on until goes through a complete warm up cycle. If you are in EV mode but ECO is OFF, then the ICE will come on at about 50% of a gas peddle push.
    I normally drive in EV +ECO around town and never find the need to hit the indent.
  14. insightman

    insightman Well-Known Member Subscriber

    When the Clarity PHEV's battery is fully charged and you activate regenerative braking (either with the brake pedal or with the left paddle), the electricity generated by the traction motor in the process of slowing the car has to go somewhere other than the battery. In this situation, the Clarity PHEV starts the engine and then sends the excess energy to the starter motor/generator, which expends the excess energy as it tries to slow the engine. It's sort of like pseudo engine braking.

    Some people who live at the top of a hill avoid fully charging their Claritys to prevent unwanted engine activation (premature enginulation I call it) when slowing as they descend the hill. This phenomenon is the Clarity's most interesting engineering detail for me. It's discussed in multiple threads, the most recent being SOLVED- Unexpected ICE Turns On.

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