Honda calls hydrogen cars the “next phase” following EVsJanuary 25, 2024
The automaker’s Clarity did dismally, but it continues to believe in the future of fuel cell passenger vehicles.
Honda recently released its 2024 outlook for its passenger vehicle business and underscored that it still sees a strong future for hydrogen cars, even though its only model powered by H2 was discontinued three years ago because of a lack of fueling infrastructure and overall demand.
The auto giant made it very clear that while hydrogen cars might not be the top emission-free vehicle at the moment, it believes that there is a strong future for this type of passenger vehicle. They see battery electric vehicles as an established technology to transition away from fossil fuel powered vehicles, but that the door will open to other technologies as well, and at that time, H2 fuel cells will lead the way.
This year, the focus is expected to be on hybrids and electric vehicles.
“In 2023, we were finally able to meet the pent-up demand for our products with both brands rebounding and American Honda finishing the year up over 30%. We projected a strong recovery, and we achieved that,” said Diallo. “This year we will continue to capitalize on hybrid models and light trucks as we begin sales of our first high volume BEV models. Along with a continued investment in our ICE products, we are anticipating increased annual sales for both Honda and Acura in 2024.”
Hydrogen cars will start making their way back into Honda’s lineup before the end of 2024.
American Honda’s main strategy is still focused on electric vehicles (EVs) and hybrids in order to offer zero-carbon and reduced-carbon emission vehicle options. This doesn’t come as much of a surprise, as the technologies has become mainstream and vehicles’ recharging requirements are readily available to most Americans either through charging stations or home-based electric chargers.
This year, Honda is boosting its hybrid volume and will be introducing its first high volume electric vehicles.
“In 2024, we will initiate sales of three zero emissions vehicles that will help the company realize its goals of 100% zero emissions vehicle sales by 2040 and ultimately our goal of carbon neutrality by 2050,” explained Diallo in the briefing.
2024 will also bring a fuel cell electric vehicle (FCEV) back into Honda’s lineup. It will be introducing two zero emission vehicles before the year is through. The first will be the Prologue SUV, a new electric vehicle. The second will be the CR-V FCEV, the first hydrogen cars to enter the lineup after the discontinued Clarity.
The CR-V FCEV will also be the first production model of a vehicle that will combine hydrogen cars with a plug-in feature. No other FCEV currently has a plug-in option. It is based on the automaker’s most popular model, with the goal of making it a practical option for people to use even as the hydrogen refueling infrastructure is in the midst of being built in the United States.
Overcoming the challenge of a lack of refueling infrastructure when trying to sell hydrogen cars.
Currently, the only public stations available are in California, and they are few and far between. This makes it difficult to make hydrogen cars appealing to consumers, as they can hardly want to own vehicles that cannot be refueled. Honda’s design is meant to help ensure that as the United States establishes and builds out its H2 refueling infrastructure, drivers of the CR-V FCEV will have options to be able to recharge or refuel their vehicles.
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