Best driving modes for 200 mile round trip

Discussion in 'Clarity' started by Cali65, Mar 27, 2019.

  1. craze1cars

    craze1cars Well-Known Member

    Remember there is a mode in between eco and sport. You can just press the eco button to shut the eco leafs off of the dash display, but without putting in sport mode. I call it “normal” mode but not sure what Honda calls it. But it notably helps with ACC acceleration over eco, with fewer “accidental” engine starts on acceleration when you’d rather the engine stay off...

    I absolutely hate eco lethargic and it saves no fuel. I drive in normal mode most of the time, but don’t use sport tooo often.

    Of course not really an issue when running in HV anyway. Just another idea. Enjoy the drive!
    Texas22Step and Cali65 like this.
  2. insightman

    insightman Well-Known Member

    Honda calls it NORMAL Mode. Only the capitalization differs.
    Cali65 likes this.
  3. Cali65

    Cali65 Member

    Will try that too....thank you
    Sent from my SM-G975U using Inside EVs mobile app
  4. insightman

    insightman Well-Known Member

    I cannot believe Honda would include an ECON Mode that saves no fuel. Even if it was exactly the same as NORMAL Mode with the addition of moderating the air conditioning, it would save fuel. I tried SPORT Mode once, but the rest of our nearly 16 months have been happily driven in ECON Mode. I'm one of those people who likes to max out my eco car's eco potential. It's a treat that the Clarity in ECON Mode is quicker than my Insight, but I rarely accelerate quicker than my Insight can.
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2019
  5. The Gadgeteer

    The Gadgeteer Active Member

    I meant both during the actual climb. Granted I haven’t done serious testing on this yet but it makes logical sense on based on what we know and don’t know.

    Before the hill Climb having battery charge above a couple of bars is critical for maximum safety and climb ability. We all agree on that.

    What we don’t know is if the logic of the computer in HV Mode says “even though I am dipping below the point I should be sending power to the battery I am going to send power to the wheels instead and charge the battery later because I detect now there is a need to maximize power to the wheels”. If it does work this way then, yes, staying in HV mode is great because the car will regain the charge consumed on the uphill when not under a heavy load, presumably on the downhill portion. If the computer does not behave that way then you are asking the car to send some power to the battery that might be needed to propell the car.

    So if the logic is there the car will always make sure the car’s electric motors have access to all the power needed to climb the hill from both the battery and the gas engine. If the logic is not there then you might have instances where the car behaves like it is losing power even though the engine is rev’ing high (angry bees). Being this has been observed by some it is very possible the logic is not there or it is there but not tuned well enough.

    So in short It is possible HV or HV Charge mode during a steep hill climb will send power to the battery that could be better used for the motor.

    Sport mode during the climb or any high load condition should be helpful in that it will ensure you are not in Eco mode and also in Sport mode the engine tends to engage more easily even if the driver doesn’t know to push past the indent. Sport mode may have other logic that favors moving the car vs. saving battery.

    EV range can be gained on downhills with regen or HV Charge.
  6. craze1cars

    craze1cars Well-Known Member

    All I meant to say is that for my style of driving, having done back to back comparisons at the pump several times, I get the same fuel economy in eco mode as I do in normal mode. So for me, eco mode accomplished nothing beyond making the throttle less responsive, with no fuel savings. Obviously all drivers are different...but I’d encourage anyone to do their own mpg comparisons before just assuming that a green leaf on the dash saves fuel. I found the same non fuel savings to be true in my previous 2013 Accord that had an eco mode
  7. insightman

    insightman Well-Known Member

    I cannot cast doubt on your personal experience that ECON and NORMAL Modes gave you equal fuel economy. Perhaps you pushed harder in ECON Mode to make your Clarity perform the way you want than you needed to push to get the same results in NORMAL Mode. I'd expect that avoiding a fight with ECON's sluggish acceleration saves fuel.

    There's one distinct fuel-saving ECON Mode benefit as it's the only mode that works with the accelerator pedal click. I know I can floor the accelerator in ECON Mode without activating the ICE. With NORMAL and SPORT Modes, you have to think about how far you're pressing the accelerator if you don't want to activate the ICE.
  8. craze1cars

    craze1cars Well-Known Member

    Yeah I'm no hypermiler and never claimed or tried to be. Yes driving slower saves fuel. If someone needs Econ mode to encourage this, they should use that mode. Given the long road trip discussion of this thread, I was simply referring to HV mode gas mileage...mostly highway. But for EV driving around town, indeed "accidental" turn-ons of the ICE is much less likely in Econ, there is no denying that...however I likewise don't concern myself with the ICE turning on periodically, like so many here seem to loathe.

    Simply expressing my personal opinion and my measured MPG facts. I really dislike the lack of responsiveness driving in Econ mode, both around town and with the cruise control set on the highway. And I have never measured gasoline savings while using it anywhere. So I now leave it off, and generally drive in Normal. Others will always have different opinions, and different driving habits will always get different MPG results...
    The Gadgeteer and insightman like this.
  9. Cali65

    Cali65 Member

    Thanx for all the responses again. Made it back with 33 ev miles left, which I used up on the last 34 miles of the trip & still had 1.5 ev miles when I pulled into my garage. Drove alot in Sports mode too. The only wierd thing was when I went up the pass in HV Sports mode and I heard what is described as "Angry Bees".........I was not expecting that as I had plenty of ev miles.
  10. The Gadgeteer

    The Gadgeteer Active Member

    My guess by being in HV mode you’re asking the car to maintain the current battery level and it is struggling to do so. It really doesn’t matter how much battery you had because when activated HV mode the car sees the battery level you had then as the new minimum amount of battery to maintain. It is almost (but not exactly) like only having 2 bars. You are inviting the bees.
  11. ClarityBill

    ClarityBill Active Member

    When I am climbing a hill and get the angry bees, I press the HV button to get out of HV mode, then press it again to go back in. This resets the battery level target, and stops the angry bees.

    Has anyone else tried this?
  12. markc

    markc New Member

    We make the drive to Cheyenne and back from Denver fairly often. Don't overthink things, the car's software does a wonderful job of managing things. Speaking for myself I work with this rule: If I can turn on the cruise control then I put the car in HV. The gas engine is most efficient at consistent highway speeds, the electric motor is far superior in urban traffic. I will put the car in HV as soon as we get on I-25 and get out of HV when we get off the highway in Cheyenne. This means I have enough energy for the battery so that the gas engine doesn't go into peevish bee mode too often (I'm yet to experience "VFR1000 at the redline" sounds). I try as best I can to avoid running the battery all the way down, the car is designed for the electric motor and the gas engine to work in tandem, it is not happy when the gas engine has to do almost all the work (that's when the bees get angry). In 9 months I have never used the Sport mode so I can't comment on that.

    Mountain driving is another beast. The gas engine will run at high speed on the uphills but you will regain a lot of charge on the way down. Again, avoid running the battery flat, the software is optimized for using both energy sources.

    Running the heat, defrost, and seat heaters definitely effects electric range. It add to what I call the "energy overhead", more electricity is being used for something other than making the car move. I don't worry too much about it, I didn't pay this much for a car to be uncomfortable riding in it.
    The Gadgeteer and Texas22Step like this.
  13. Check out the Honda Clarity Owners Manual, pp15-18 for how Honda says to use EV, HV and HV Charge modes effectively. Study the strange graphics on pages 16 and 17 And compare the strategies. After staring at it for awhile, I got that you can stair-step charge your battery (only up to 57.8% sadly) using HV Charge for about an hour on the highway, then switching to HV or EV. What I don’t see is the scenario where you run your battery in EV down to maybe 10-20%, HV Charge for an hour to bring it back up to just under 60%, then repeat the EV-HV Charge loop until you get to your destination. Has anyone tried this?

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