Took Test Drive - Battery Almost Dead

Discussion in 'Clarity' started by RobC2, Sep 24, 2018.

  1. RobC2

    RobC2 New Member

    My wife and I just got back from a test drive of a Clarity Touring. The car was great, and we really liked how it drove. Unfortunately however, even though I called ahead, it was almost completely discharged. How differently does the car behave with a charged battery? We did hear some engine noise, but it wasn't bothersome. Just curious if the car is quicker, etc. with a full battery. I will say if this is the worst case scenario, we will probably be getting one. Thanks!
  2. V8Power

    V8Power Active Member

    Performs awesome with battery charged running pure EV. It'll drive more gentle in Econ mode and in Sport mode, the acceleration is very strong. We haven't used gas in 3 months.
  3. jdonalds

    jdonalds Well-Known Member

    Just tell the dealer you need to drive the demo fully charged.

    The acceleration is pretty brisk even in Econ mode. Today I pulled away from other cars at signal lights even in Econ mode. In my mind I was saying, "Ha suckers I'm only in Econ. If you want to really test me I'll floor it so it goes into max power mode then I'll watch you in my rear view mirror."
  4. insightman

    insightman Well-Known Member

    It's almost as if they didn't really want you to like the Clarity. Did they try to move you into an Accord after you got back from your juice-less test drive in the Clarity?

    Salesperson: "Look at the Accord's dashboard. Have you ever seen such beautiful knobs on an entertainment system? The Clarity? It's old tech--no knobs!"
    Randy Stegbauer likes this.
  5. Heino

    Heino Active Member

    The car is pretty quick for its size... instant torque. I can easily outrun anyone at a light, or keep up with other sporty drivers who try to be fast.

    Definitely test drive the car again with a fully charged battery.
  6. Viking79

    Viking79 Well-Known Member

    The car is "dead" (switches to hybrid mode) at 2 bars. It keeps this reserve as a buffer for power needed for acceleration. You won't lose power until that is depleted, which generally won't happen unless driving up a steep mountain pass at high speeds.

    I prefer how the car drives with a charged battery of course, much more refined driving. It is actually a pretty fun car to drive fairly fast or slow.

    We are up to 21,000 miles now and it has been great. I really don't notice any wear and tear of any kind. The car really amazes me. Saved about 1000 gallons of gas vs our minivan in that time.
  7. chironi

    chironi New Member

    I love how the Clarity has a super comfortable ride, perfect for touring driving. But sport it is not. I drove a WRX before the Clarity, and the Clarity is order of magnitude slower.
  8. dalbeck

    dalbeck Member

    In the short few days I have owned my Clarity Touring, my wife and I feel a significant difference between battery and no battery. The engine noise is a bit loud if you don't have the radio up, and the car feels heavier. When driving in pure EV it's super smooth and responsive. We just had an 80 mile trip over the weekend that was on the pure engine, wasn't bad by any means but the battery makes it feel like you are gliding. If you are on the fence I would suggest like the others have to test drive again with a charged battery.
    amy2421 likes this.
  9. RobC2

    RobC2 New Member

    Thanks for all of the replies. We are definitely going to try again to get a fully charged one.

    Last night was a circus. I made the appointment five hours in advance and they bounced us between three different salespeople, making us explain to each one why we were there and what we wanted. I went back to the front desk and explained that we didn’t have time for this with two young kids and that I made an appointment for a reason. I said that I was assured a charged car to test and they said there was a charged one, but someone bought it. Then the front desk girl says she can charge it and (not joking here), pulls out a portable jump starter kit. Long story short, we need to find another dealer.
    jdonalds, amy2421 and Randy Stegbauer like this.
  10. Ghaleon

    Ghaleon New Member

    The dealer I went to didn't have a working outlet outside for charging the car when I told them I wanted to test drive it charged. They ended up figuring out how to use HV charge mode and had the car sit and charge itself with the ICE before I came by again. If other dealers aren't an option, you might suggest they do that. It is definitely worth trying the car without the battery fully drained, my dealership is at the bottom of a significant hill so my very first impression of the car was the "angry bees" sound of the ICE going full bore to support a fully discharged battery on a significant incline..
  11. Emanuel Green

    Emanuel Green Member

    HV Charge mode is the way to get around this. When I did my test drive, the battery was flat. I turned on HV Charge mode (hold down the HV Mode button just above the shifter for a few seconds, and it will start the engine and run it to put electricity in the battery). Did the test drive with HV Charge mode on. Then I told the dealer I needed to go around again. Switched off HV charge, and by that point it had built up enough juice to get a feel for driving on EV only.
    Parja and PHEV Newbie like this.
  12. barnesgj

    barnesgj Active Member

    As suspected, the dealers really don't seem to want to sell these cars. They certainly aren't encouraging their sales staff to learn about them, either. I still remember having to show my salesman on the sticker that it didn't require hydrogen fuel.
    Sorry about your experiences. Rest assured that the cars themselves deserve better treatment than they are getting and that they are worth the end run around the sales staff shortcomings.
  13. stanigu

    stanigu Member

    World of difference with the battery charged. Much more refined ride, and faster. I make it a point to engage the HV mode when on Freeway to help maintain the battery charge (for long trips), so that on the streets I can roll with the EV mode. On the freeway, you can't even really tell when the ICE kicks in, but on the streets you definitely can.
  14. ryd994

    ryd994 Active Member

    Get dealer to recharge it.
    If they can't, try using HV charge mode for a few minutes and keep it running as you test drive. That should give you some more power.
    Randy Stegbauer likes this.
  15. LOL. The only knob I want is a volume control/on/off button. :)
  16. Yes, the dealer I bought from was about as savy. I wonder if any dealers actually every drive a Clarity?
  17. I was in exactly the same boat. I test drove it *three* times and *none* had any charge. Every experience was the "angry bees" engine noise. It wasn't until I got it home, charged it overnight and drove it to work the next day for me to experience the quiet and smooth EV mode. However, to be fair, this is not your ordinary "turn the key, put it in drive, press on the gas" car.
  18. Emanuel Green

    Emanuel Green Member

    Anecdotally, I heard about a sales manager who took a new Clarity home overnight to try it out on her commute. She said she hated it on the way home, but couldn't articulate why.

    The next day on her way into work, she loved the car. She wasn't quite sure why she had such a different reaction to it the next day.

    Turns out it was because the battery was flat on the way home. She charged it overnight, so it was much more pleasant in the morning. But it took her a while to figure out that was the reason for her change of heart!
  19. Jaffa262

    Jaffa262 New Member

    I had a similar experience- test drive one 4 months ago with no charge and just hated the engine noise. Return visit two days ago and tried the touring fully charged and bought it - night and day in the difference!!!

  20. insightman

    insightman Well-Known Member

    The Clarity can almost be that easy to drive. Here are two panels from a poster board I made to display at the recent National Drive Electric Week event in my city. My "easy way" list should have mentioned the Clarity's 47-mile EV range, but I didn't want to make that list too busy. My "engaged way" list is just to give an idea of how many options the Clarity PHEV offers drivers who want to take more control. It was mainly directed at the other plug-in car owners exhibiting at the event, none of whom had ever seen a Clarity PHEV and had no idea how it worked.

    1. Unplug
    2. Get in
    3. Drive
    4. Get out
    5. Plug in (at home or at a public charging station)
    6. Gas-up (if your trip is longer than 340 miles)

    1. Unplug
    2. Get in
    3. Select ECON Mode for most efficient operation
    4. Activate HV Mode to save battery charge for later use
    5. Drive
    6. Use decelerator paddle to slow without using brakes, regenerating power
    7. Use Brake Hold to stay in place in stop-and-go traffic without brake pedal
    8. Use Adaptive Cruise Control with Low-Speed Follow to keep safe spacing
    9. Monitor Power/Charge Gauge to accelerate efficiently (eg. slowly)
    10. De-activate HV Mode to use EV power in city, eliminating emissions
    11. Use HV CHARGE Mode to recharge battery before tackling steep inclines
    12. Under 12 mph, hearken to the sound of angels singing to save pedestrians
    RobC2, leehinde and jdonalds like this.

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