This is something I'm really excited about. I've been a Honda Fit driver and lover for the past three years and I was sorely disappointed when I read earlier this year that a hybrid version was being introduced in Japan but not in the U.S. Luckily, at the LA Auto Show today Honda revealed an all-electric version of the compact hatchback that will hit U.S. and Japan car lots in 2012.
The Fit EV concept is identical to the gas-fueled version in body and layout. It uses an electric motor based on the one used in the FCX Clarity, powered by a lithium-ion battery. The car has a top speed of 90 mph and a range of 100 miles per charge.
Like the Honda CR-Z hybrid, there are three driving modes: Econ, Normal and Sport, with the Econ mode maximizing efficiency and the Sport mode maximizing acceleration and performance. Honda also states that it will have "interactive coaching systems" to help teach the driver how to maximize battery life, like indicating when to turn off air conditioning or other accessories to conserve battery power.
A full battery charge will take less than 12 hours using a 120-volt outlet or less than six hours using a 240-volt outlet. Here are some additional details from Honda:
"...The Fit EV will have a standard connectivity system that allows the driver to stay connected through a smartphone and personal computer, or the Honda-exclusive interactive remote, while away from the vehicle. The pocket-friendly, interactive remote provides connectivity to the vehicle without the need for an internet connection or mobile phone signal. Through the connectivity system, drivers will be able to remotely view the vehicle's state of charge, initiate charging and activate the air conditioning, even while connected to the grid, to reduce the drain on the battery at start-up. The mobile application and website also offers the ability to set charging notifications and alerts to optimize utility rates, and provides 24-hour roadside assistance, along with a public charging station locator. The Fit EV will come equipped with a standard Honda Satellite Linked Navigation System™ that includes a public charging-station locator capability."
Honda also introduced a plug-in hybrid platform planned for a 2012 production that can run 10 - 15 miles in all-electric mode at a top speed of 62 mph. A full battery recharge will take 2 - 2.5 hours using a 120-volt outlet or 1.5 hours using a 240-volt outlet. The electric motor is paired with a 2.0 liter, 4-cylinder i-VTEC engine. An onboard generator will also add to the battery.
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