Realistic full range - is 340 miles gonna happen?

Discussion in 'Clarity' started by Danabw, Aug 23, 2019.

  1. Sandroad

    Sandroad Well-Known Member Subscriber

    Pushing my Clarity to 340 miles without refueling would introduce range anxiety on my part. I'm completely comfortable with 250 in any season, but after that, I'd start looking for a gas station. I'm just don't like to run gas or electric very low. So, it really depends on what you are comfortable with. The test rides will be important and make sure the Clarity has a charged battery. In the end, I've consistently advocated to drive what you like. I suspect the Accord Hybrid is a nice car and if that's the preference, eat the price difference and don't look back.
    228ra likes this.
  2. TomL

    TomL Active Member

    In June I traded in a 2017 Accord Hybrid with 95,000 miles on a 2018 Clarity. I drove 600 miles from Chippewa Falls, WI to Kansas City to buy it. At age 73 I have owned several dozen cars and the Accord Hybrid was the best ever for me--until the Clarity. There are a few things about the Accord I like better, but they are minor and do not compare to the huge step forward with a well designed PHEV. My wife did not want to trade in the Accord for the "what is that you want?", but she understands now and has no regrets. She lets the car decide when to use EV and HV and it works out trouble free and very efficiently. This forum has the largest representation of Clarity owners, many of whom are current or past owners of Prius, Leaf, BMW, Tesla and other EV variants and there is a very high rate of owner satisfaction with the Clarity. Since June we have averaged 58-62 verified EV miles daily with 64.6 the highest (see my initial posts on this forum when I asked if this was real--it is), although I expect the EV miles will go down here in Wisconsin during winter months. When using HV on long trips we exceed 40 mpg, which is 4-8 lower than we got with the Accord during warm weather. As others have said, ultimately EV and HV mileage is largely influenced by driving habits.
    Sandroad likes this.
  3. Mowcowbell

    Mowcowbell Active Member

    The choice was simple for me since 90% of my driving was commuting back and forth from home to work, combined with short (<20 mile) trips running errands near home. I've gone the past 2 months without visiting a gas station and I still have a full tank. Do that in a Accord Hybrid.
    Teslawannabe, KentuckyKen and MPower like this.
  4. MPower

    MPower Well-Known Member

    Good grief. Tell that woman to get a grip. I'm a little old lady and this is my second PHEV and much the nicer of the two. The engineering may be rocket science, but the driving is not. Press the button and go. How hard is that? My longest trip was alone in the depths of winter from VT to KS and back, 1500 miles each way. With the heat on and only one plugin on the first night out, I averaged about 42 mpg, over the mountains and across the prairie. (With temperate CA driving you will likely get much better mpg.) You do need to gas up possibly more frequently than in an ICE on long trips, but really even if your bladder doesn't need you to stop. your driving probably does.

    You don't say how long your wife's commute is or what her typical use will be, but remember, total driving range only matters when you are on a long trip. Otherwise she will be plugging in the car every night and adding another 40-60 miles to the "range".

    It is really lovely to realize that I haven't put gas in the car for more than a month. It was a mistake to blather at her about "modes". Once she gets the car, if she gets interested she will figure it out; if she doesn't she can just press the start button and drive.

    Take her for a test drive and make sure the car is fully charged, the silence and smoothness is amazing.
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2019
  5. Walt R

    Walt R Active Member

    Funny I should see your post, as I came onto the forums specifically to relate that I just filled my tank after 351 gasoline miles (out of 2,780 since June 8), and that indicated 24 estimated miles remaining. I now have an HV range of 379 showing on the meter (haven't used any of that gas as I filled up during a 10 mile errand). About 220 of those miles were on long days, the rest 10 miles or less at a time when I slightly exceeded EV range.

    I record every time I go into HV, and have filled up with between a low of 230 and a previous high of 308 gasoline miles on the tank - generally with 40 or more miles of estimated HV remaining. In winter I have gotten about 42 mpg on gasoline per tank, and in summer 48 (except this tank).

    So, 280 or more per tank is definitely feasible, and as always will depend on your driving style along with temps and accessory use. Note that I live in the east, so even most of my highway miles are at around 65 mph - sometimes 70-72 on longer trips, but also closer to 60 on non-interstates and urban freeways.
    KentuckyKen likes this.
  6. Limey1976

    Limey1976 New Member

    As MPower says, there really is no reason to manage the driving modes if you don’t wish to. Just plug it in when you can, fill with gas when it needs it and leave it be to do the right thing.

    This was a major selling point for my wife though in her case, over a pure bev. With the clarity there is no range anxiety, no planning required - just jump in and drive it with no fuss.

    When I want to nerd out and push the drive mode buttons, find destination chargers, etc I can. She just drives.
    MPower likes this.
  7. Sthomasa

    Sthomasa Member

    I traded in a 2017 accord hybrid for clarity. Loved the 2017s seconds of ev only and range only but got real 41 mpg.
    I was able to trade up to 2019 base clarity for a little over 4k.
    No regrets. More room, super quiet, slow speed follow cruise, are my favorites.
  8. TomL

    TomL Active Member

    AIAI's comments comparing the driving features of Accord vs Clarity are spot on, with some definite plusses for the Accord. I thought I would add some further information from our own fuel cost comparison. We put over 94,000 miles on a 2017 Accord Hybrid in 29 months. We are very careful drivers so we got warm weather mpg that typically ranged 46-49, often over 50. MPG went down in winter months to 35-40. Our gasoline cost averaged approximately $250/mo, with some variability as per gallon cost ranged from $2.60 to $2.96. So far with nearly 5000 miles on our 2018 Clarity, our gasoline/electric cost averages less than $50/month. As retired folks, this cost savings of about $200/mo is a pretty compelling feature. Your cost savings will vary from our experience if gasoline is more or less expensive where you live, and if you drive with a heavy foot.
  9. Robert_Alabama

    Robert_Alabama Well-Known Member

    I love the Clarity, but in truth if you are driving on long trips (more than 200 miles) for more than 75% of the mileage on the car, I'd probably give the nod to the Honda Accord Hybrid. The Clarity really shines as a commuter car or where more than half of your mileage is daily driving less than 50 miles. If that is the case and you have access to free charging, then it is a no-brainer for economics, no matter what gas prices do. If you are in an area of the country where electricity prices are high and you have no free charging options, then it takes wanting to be green to love it. I'm lucky that my nighttime charging rates are about $0.10/kWh so breakeven with gasoline is about $1.40/gallon (really only matters for my Volt which I charge at home, the Clarity gets almost all it's charging free at work). With lower gas prices, there are lower savings for electric as well, making the Honda Accord Hybrid relatively more attractive. I think it really depends on how you plan to drive the car and what your charging costs are and how you view the Clarity as green as to which one is recommended.
    Mowcowbell likes this.
  10. Danabw

    Danabw New Member

    Wife test drove today and the game is over...Accord Hybrid is here strong preference, she liked it best in terms of performance, handling, and style (the rear wheel fenders on the Clarity were not to her tastes). She wants a red one. :) Her car, so her call. Thanks - this forum has been one of the best I've found for balanced and useful information. Really appreciate everyone's input!!
    fotomoto and Sandroad like this.
  11. Dan Albrich

    Dan Albrich Active Member

    My take is that the Clarity range is a little limited -- I would of much preferred even say a 12 gallon tank to the 7 gal tank that comes with it. The car is heavy due to the battery so I doubt it makes a whole bunch of difference in weight difference.

    As others have noted, performance varies a lot by factors like temperature, driving habits etc. I drive my Clarity like a normal car, which means I'm likely doing 80 mph on the freeway when I do a long trip. Higher speeds kill mileage. Even so, I've measured my mileage at about 40mpg so the car is truly impressive on gas mileage. So in my case, I likely get 280 total miles of gas range, and 25-40 miles of electric range. And no I don't really think I get 340. Maybe 320 tops.
    (I never see more than about 48 miles of EV range, even under perfect conditions, simply doesn't happen on my car. I see EV range from about 26 to 40 miles mostly depending on temperature where summer is best).

    As others have noted, I also get uncomfortable when lower than say 80 miles of total range remaining (i.e. equiv. of 2 gallons of gas or less). So for me I'm looking for gas station at about mile 240-250. And yes, this means even on long road trip I am more cognizant of my gas left, and do stop more often for gas to make sure I don't run out than I would be in my old car (which even at say 22-27 mpg, with 16 gal tank could do 400 mile range).

    All in all, totally worth the trade-off in my case. I commute using all electric. I have at times gone 2 months without a visit to the gas station. My electric cost is reasonable at say 11 cents for KWH. So for my uses, very much worth the trade-off and doesn't keep me from doing long trips-- but I will say I literally plan where I'm stopping for gas (at least generally) when traveling in the rural west.

  12. TomL

    TomL Active Member

    Cue taps.

    Sent from my iPad using Inside EVs
    MPower and Sandroad like this.
  13. 4sallypat

    4sallypat Active Member

    Now that is a great testament to the value holding power of the Honda.
    Only $4K difference paid from a 2017 to 2019 - can only be done on a high resale value car.

    If you take any other car manufacturer, same trade up scenario and you would have to shell out more like $10K.

    Well done!
  14. Sthomasa

    Sthomasa Member

    That resale plus 9000 in tax credit and CA rebate, plus 3.50 gas and 6000 off msrp.
    Felt like rare too good to be true deal.
    Really an amazing car. Just wonder if there will be a 2020 and what resale will be in a few years. But i enjoy driving the Clarity everyday. Over 2000 miles, 14 gallons of gas. Long trips on gas HV, 50+. the front, back, but that rear wheel well, well, no one is perfect.
  15. 2002

    2002 Well-Known Member

    Probably most of us know that the rear fender skirts are there because of aerodynamics and not because of some misguided design whim. But we probably shouldn't assume that everyone knows that because I don't hear it mentioned very often. And rarely mentioned in reviews that malign the styling, probably because they don't know that the skirts work in conjunction with the air intake in front of the rear wheels to direct air past the wheels in what is referred to as an air curtain which reduces turbulence around the wheels. When showing my car to someone I sometimes put my hand into the rear scoop to show that it is not just a decoration, it is an actual air intake, then I put my hand into the air exit that is located inside the wheel well.

    The front wheels have a similar air curtain design although they don't have a skirt because the front wheels need more clearance. The air entrance for the front wheels is there also but is barely visible, located in the very lowest corner of each front bumper. You can also put your hand into the front scoops and the front wheel well air exit but I usually don't, I just point to the front wheels and say they have the same thing up front.

    So the question is was the small mpg gain worth it, considering the backlash and unfortunately what I am sure is some loss of sales at least partially because of it. Tough call. Personally I'm glad it has them, although on black cars like mine the fender skirts and air scoop are practically invisible. Obviously not the case on other colors. Many people here seem to like the way they look, but the discussion at the moment is not our opinion but whether it has affected sales. Based on reviews and as just one example post #30 above "she liked (Accord) best in terms of performance, handling, and style (the rear wheel fenders on the Clarity were not to her tastes)". Honda perhaps thought it would be okay since previous cars had them especially the original Insight. In fact some reviewers seem to assume that the fender skirts exist solely to look more like the Insight.

    The other question is could they have kept the skirts but just made them look better somehow, without having the straight angle buzz cut look. That I don't know. The skirts are overall a good idea functionally and maybe in the future another car maker will pull it off and get the trend going, but for now in terms of styling they are a bit ahead of their time and that probably has hurt Clarity to some extent, especially since in general they have not been explained properly, which is too bad because in reviews where the reviewer understood the purpose they still didn't quite like the look but they were at least more accepting of it.
    Robert_Alabama likes this.
  16. Just had our sixth Clarity sighting on I-40 west of Knoxville. The fender skirts were the only way to confirm it wasn’t just another Accord or Civic or whatever as it went by on the Interstate.

    Plus, we kinda like the uniqueness. And our Citroen badges have provoked a few knowing smiles.
    MPower likes this.
  17. Agzand

    Agzand Active Member

    I have not measured long distance range. All I can say is that during several long distance trips I did not feel the range had any impact comparing to a regular ICE car. It is a none issue for me.

    Regarding HV mode, yes I would switch to HV as soon as I get on the open highway. If I had to do just one steep climb however, I would use EV Sport to avoid high RPMs. This works great if you have to do a steep climb and then descend on the other side. I did some calculations once, in a typical mountain highway situation the car uses about 3 - 3.5 kWh to climb 1,000 ft (varies depending on slope). Assuming the car has 12 kWh usable battery capacity, you can climb about 3,500 to 4,000 ft using battery power only, which means about 18 miles at 4% slope.
    hamr4267 and The Gadgeteer like this.
  18. rodeknyt

    rodeknyt Active Member

    I can spot a Clarity several blocks away by the DRLs. No other car has such pronounced "hockey stick" lights up front. Easy to spot whether it's coming at you or you see it in your mirror.
    Mowcowbell likes this.
  19. Mowcowbell

    Mowcowbell Active Member

    I chose solar silver as it really shows off the fender skirts. Oh wait... that was the only color on the lot (!).

    I think if the majority of my driving had been over 50 mile highway trips, I would have gone for the Honda Insight.

    Between that and the hockey stick DRL's, it definitely doesn't look like yet another Accord/Camry. For sure stands out in a sea of jacked up F150/Silverado/Ram's.
    Teslawannabe likes this.
  20. We had just gotten on I-40 eastbound from the I-75 split west of Knoxville and were gradually merging left when the Clarity zoomed by in the rain yesterday. Never had much of a chance to take a gander at the hockey sticks. But yes, they certainly are distinctive.

Share This Page