Honda unveiled the all-new 2013 Fit EV at the Los Angeles
Auto Show, announcing plans to begin leasing the 123 city-mile per charge (76
mile range combined adjusted city/highway) battery electric commuter vehicle to
its U.S. customers in the summer of 2012. The Fit EV is based on the popular
Fit hatchback and is a part of the company's diverse portfolio of alternative
fuel vehicles that includes gasoline-electric hybrid, plug-in hybrid, fuel
cell-electric and natural gas-powered models.
American Honda will begin leasing the Fit EV to customers in
select California and Oregon markets next summer, and will expand to six East
Coast markets in early 2013. The Fit EV's Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price
(MSRP) is $36,625 with an estimated lease priced at $399 a month. Honda will
monitor market acceptance, but expects volume at this early stage of production
to be approximately 1,100 Fit EV's over the next three years.
"The Fit EV is the next critical step in Honda's
portfolio approach to alternative fueled vehicles," said John Mendel,
executive vice president of sales, American Honda Motor Co., Inc. "There
is no other automaker on the planet whose spirit is more deeply invested in the
effort to realize a cleaner, more energy-efficient and ultimately more
sustainable transportation future than Honda."
The Fit EV is designed to meet the needs of an average urban
commuter, offering an estimated driving range of 123-miles on a single charge
using the US EPA city cycle test methods (Honda anticipates a combined
city/highway EV range of 76 miles on the new Fuel Economy labels) 1. The Fit EV
will be powered by a 20 kWh lithium-ion battery and a 92 kilowatt coaxial
electric motor. The high density electric motor, derived from the motor used in
the FCX Clarity fuel cell electric vehicle, delivers excellent efficiency and
power while remaining quiet at high speeds.
Driving range of the Fit EV can be maximized by using
several innovative features, including a 3- mode electric drive system, adapted
from the CR-Z Sport Hybrid. The system allows the driver to select between
Econ, Normal and Sport to instantly and seamlessly change the driving
experience to maximize efficiency or improve acceleration. While in Econ mode,
practical driving range can increase by as much as 17-percent compared to
driving in Normal mode. Acceleration improves significantly when in Sport mode,
adding to the Fit EV's fun to drive nature.
In addition to the 3-mode driving system, the Fit EV
includes interactive coaching features designed to assist the driver in
maximizing battery performance and driving range. The power meter alerts the
driver to optimal driving conditions. Additional energy- saving features
includes a highly efficient electric air conditioning system and new regenerative
The 6.6 kW, onboard 32 amp charger allows for convenient
recharging of the Fit EV. With a 240-volt charger, the Fit EV can fully
recharge in as little as three hours. At launch timing, Honda will have a
preferred Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE) charging supplier.
The exterior dimensions of the Fit EV are identical to the
gasoline-powered Fit with the addition of a higher hip point to accommodate the
under floor placement of the 20 kWh battery. When the car launches in summer
2012, it will be available in one exclusive color, Reflection Blue Pearl. EV
badges on the rear hatch and decals on the side of the vehicle distinguish the
electric vehicle from its gasoline counterpart.
The Fit EV carries a familiar chrome front fascia that is
similar to other Honda environmentally-responsible vehicles like the FCX
Clarity fuel cell electric vehicle and Insight hybrid. The Fit EV is outfitted
with distinct five-spoke alloy wheels and an aerodynamic rear spoiler.
In the passenger cabin, the seating surfaces are covered
with bio-fabric. The Fit EV features illuminated meters that alert the driver
to key vehicle functions including state of charge, battery usage and driving
range. The meters change color depending on the driving mode selected (green,
white or red).
The Fit EV features a spacious and functional cabin with
comfortable seating for up to five passengers. For enhanced versatility, the
Fit EV offers multiple seating and cargo-carrying configurations.
To help the driver manage the electric vehicle ownership
experience, the Fit EV will have a standard telematics system that allows the
driver to stay connected through a smartphone, personal computer or interactive
remote. Through the Fit EV smartphone and computer applications, the driver can
remotely view the vehicles state of charge, initiate charging and activate the
air conditioning and heater, to pre-condition the vehicle while connected to
the grid which maximizes battery range on start-up. The mobile application and
website also offers the ability to set charging notifications and alerts to
optimize charging times based on varying utility rates and provides access to
24-hour roadside assistance. The Fit EV will come equipped with a standard
Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System™ that provides the ability to locate
public charging stations and frequently updated traffic information.
The interactive remote allows the driver to monitor the
vehicles state of charge and cabin temperature. Additionally, the driver can
initiate and terminate charging and remotely turn on the air conditioning using
the interactive remote. The interactive remote does not require an internet or
mobile connection to operate however the driver must be within 100 feet (30
meters) of the vehicle.