Honda’s hydrogen-powered Clarity gets self-driving tech

Honda’s hydrogen-powered Clarity gets self-driving tech image

The Japanese automaker displays a fuel-cell Clarity packed with driverless systems at the G7 Ise-Shima Summit.

Honda, Toyota and Hyundai are so far the only global automakers that are trying to convince the automotive world that fuel-cell cars are truly the right option for a cleaner environment. There are still many technological hurdles to cross before hydrogen-powered models break the ice, especially cost-wise, but these companies are not going to give up. And as the self-driving trend is on a fast progress pace, mating those two directions seems like a logical step.

Therefore, Honda has developed a driverless fuel-cell Clarity prototype to be displayed at the on-going G7 Summit 2016 in Ise-Shima, Japan, where leaders discuss how to speed up the efforts in addressing the climate change issue. Japan’s no. 3 automaker has not revealed any further details around its project, but it is known that it is already working on autonomous systems, with the aim of releasing the first semi-driverless models by 2020.

Honda also showcases its technological ideas during the summit, including the Uni-Cub personal mobility device, the Micro-beta micro-sized electric car or the Walking Assist Device, a robotic device used for walking rehabilitation.

As for the 2017 Clarity sedan, it will have an EPA-estimated driving range of at least 300 miles (482 kilometers) and will need 3-5 minutes for a tank refill. The model will be available for lease to customers in California before the end of the year, with a targeted monthly lease of no more than 500 dollars. Furthermore, it will be joined by two additional versions, the Clarity Electric and Clarity Plug-in Hybrid, to be launched in the US in 2017.

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