June 16, 2008―Honda Motor Co., Ltd. today announced that it has begun production of the new FCX Clarity fuel cell vehicle, with the first vehicle (U.S. specification ) coming off the line today. In conjunction with the line-off event, media were allowed to view a number of the new production processes.
The FCX Clarity is produced at the Honda Automobile New Model Center (Takanezawa-machi, Shioya-gun, Tochigi Prefecture). A new dedicated fuel cell vehicle assembly line was established, which includes processes unique to a fuel cell vehicle such as the installation of the fuel cell stack and hydrogen tank. The fuel cell stack itself is produced at Honda Engineering Co., Ltd. (Haga-machi, Haga-gun, Tochigi Prefecture). In manufacturing fuel cells, exclusively designed automated equipment was introduced to ensure quality of the highest precision while enabling mass production of cells, with several hundred cells required for each fuel cell stack. Through these initiatives, Honda is making steady progress in the area of fuel cell vehicle production, in addition to fuel cell and fuel cell vehicle technologies, thereby moving closer to realizing its goal to achieve more widespread use of fuel cell vehicles.
The FCX Clarity was designed from scratch as a dedicated fuel cell vehicle. It is powered by the highly compact, efficient and powerful Honda V Flow fuel cell stack. Boasting a low-slung, dynamic and sophisticated appearance made possible by the innovative layout of the fuel cell power plant, the FCX Clarity offers superior design and driving performance as well as environmental responsibility. Lease sales are scheduled to begin in July in the U.S. and this fall in Japan. The combined sales plan for Japan and the U.S. calls for a few dozen units within a year and about 200 units within three years. Additionally, the FCX Clarity will be exhibited at the G8 Hokkaido Toyako Summit to begin July 7, as one of a group of advanced environmental technologies.