Clarity Availability - Page 2 - 2018 Honda Clarity Forum
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post #11 of 53 (permalink) Old 08-02-2019, 05:45 PM
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I disagree, the market in most of the 50 states made up its mind. The Clarity is not in demand enough in much of the US for Honda to make money selling it there. Maybe it's because you can't roll coal in a Clarity (ooh was that a bit too harsh?). The point of the tax credit is to encourage folks to move to cars that are more fuel efficient and cleaner and to help manufacturers develop such cars, this supports the goals of energy independence, reduced carbon emissions, and reduced pollution. Those goals are supported regardless if the sales of the cars are not evenly distributed through the US. Why should that credit be denied to folks in the West who really want cars like these just because too few were interested in the rest of the US? I hope that Honda takes this lesson and makes a PHEV of one of their SUVs like the CRV or the Pilot. I saw a Pilot at the dealer when I bought my Clarity, it looked really nice. The larger size would allow for a bigger battery. That might go over better east of the Sierras.

Someone objected to the credit because it is funded with transportation funds that are presumably redirected from spending on highways elsewhere. I don't know about all the CARB states, but the people and businesses of California pay way waaaay more in federal taxes than we get back in federal funding. We subsidize federal spending in much of the rest of the US. I don't think this tax credit changes that noticeably.
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post #12 of 53 (permalink) Old 08-02-2019, 06:15 PM
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(Note: After posting the Quick Reply below on this thread I decided to go ahead and start a new thread on this same subject. Therefore, if you have an opinion or information to share, feel free to do so here, or perhaps more appropriately, to the larger body, in the other thread I just posted. Thank you.)

I was going to start a separate thread regarding my issue but I think this thread encompasses mine. I bought my Clarity PHEV in North Carolina in November 2018. Prior to purchase I performed my due diligence and I was convinced then, and still am, the Clarity PHEV is the best PHEV on the market in terms of the value received for the money spent. Beyond that, I simply love this vehicle!

But, every month I check the sales figures contrast between the Toyota Prius Prime and the Honda Clarity PHEV and I am increasingly dismayed. While I personally feel the Prius Prime is not superior to the Clarity, and in many respects, not even in the same league in terms of electric range and comfort, the Clarity's sales numbers are diminishing month over month versus the Prime which is climbing. At the rate the national sales of the Clarity are going I fail to see how Honda will justify continuing to sell the vehicle beyond this model year.

Now, to my point. I have to ask myself why the Clarity's sales are going down precipitously month over month, while the Prius Prime are increasing? I have no facts or information whatsoever to answer this question but it is disconcerting to me. As a recent purchaser of a vehicle I am extremely pleased with, I am now faced with the prospect I may have bought a "one-off" technological marvel that will be extinct in a very short period of time. Most importantly if this downward trend continues I have no confidence my local Honda dealer will have the expertise to service my vehicle when the time comes I need some highly technical maintenance performance. Worse yet, I would be very hesitant to take my vehicle on a long road trip not knowing if I could get service, or YIKES! parts should I have a problem.

Does anyone have a clue what Honda's plans on for the Clarity?

Last edited by JimWoo; 08-02-2019 at 06:44 PM.
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post #13 of 53 (permalink) Old 08-02-2019, 08:02 PM
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The idea that other people are "subsidizing" a tax credit is absurd: A tax credit doesn't give "money back" - no one is "getting money" - money is not being taken out of one pocket and put into another - a tax credit is just a tax break to incentivise a purchase. My state, for example, offers no incentives on the purchase of alternative fuel vehicles - in fact it disincentivizes EVs and hybrids with annual "road taxes" that are not paid by ICE vehicles. But, just before the school year begins, there's a weekend when no sales taxes are levied on back-to-school clothes and supplies - no one is paying MORE to compensate for this tax break that's only given to families with school-age children.
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post #14 of 53 (permalink) Old 08-02-2019, 08:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DucRider View Post
Just as a note, this requirement would disqualify Tesla vehicles.
Ignoring the "dealership" terminology:
Some states do not have a service center, some states have re-purposed laws protecting franchisees to specifically exclude manufacturers from selling direct.
Good point on Tesla. Modify this to be available for sale/service in all 50 States except where State/Local Law prohibits that manufacturer from selling in the State/locality.

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Originally Posted by DucRider View Post
That is already a requirement. The issue I have is some PHEV's cannot reach freeway speed without the use of the ICE. My opinion is that a vehicle that must use the ICE under normal driving condition when the battery would otherwise have sufficient charge to power the vehicle should not qualify for the Tax Credit.
It starts to get a little tricky when you look at PHEV's from Hyundai/Kia. They have decent range (~30 miles), and can drive at 65 mph without the use of the ICE. But the big caveat - if you want cabin heat the only source is the ICE (which must be run and run long enough to be brought up to temp). This makes a year-round daily commute on electricity alone impractical for much of the population.
The Clarity PHEV would NOT qualify in this situation. Full throttle pulls in the ICE even when there's more than sufficient battery. Of all the PHEVs only the Chevy Volt would qualify. Because of those idiot on-ramp stop lights, normal driving conditions in many urban areas require wide open throttle to get to highway speed in a very short stretch of road. Many times those lights are active even during medium traffic levels where traffic is still running at 65 or higher - you have to use wide open throttle to get to that speed in the short space available. I'd go with the car needs to be able to cruise at 85 MPH or faster entirely on battery. 85 MPH is the highest posted speed limit on any highway in the US.

Point is, I think we agree on the general policy, but it definitely requires some tuning with realistic performance parameters laid out knowing that driving conditions vary widely across the country.

California has some of the worst air pollution in the country, so I have no problem with CARB setting tighter rules there. The problem I have is that manufacturers won't even sell their EVs outside CARB states.

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post #15 of 53 (permalink) Old 08-02-2019, 11:59 PM
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I have already asked my congressman to void the Federal Tax credits for any vehicle not available in all 50 states. The concept that only the 13 CARB states have access to electric cars is a political distortion of the market induced by California.
^^^ This

Great post!

It's the old "build it and they will come". If you don't build it or ship it to a majority of the states how can folks expect it to be sold in those states?

Toyota thus far has used same strategy with the prime...and I hear Subaru is pulling the same BS with their PHEV coming to market. Vast majority going to a few states.

Politically motivated which inherently means it will be an inept and unfair system at the end of the day.

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post #16 of 53 (permalink) Old 08-03-2019, 03:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Clarity_newbie View Post
^^^ This

Great post!

It's the old "build it and they will come". If you don't build it or ship it to a majority of the states how can folks expect it to be sold in those states?

Toyota thus far has used same strategy with the prime...and I hear Subaru is pulling the same BS with their PHEV coming to market. Vast majority going to a few states.

Politically motivated which inherently means it will be an inept and unfair system at the end of the day.
You do realize that the only reason the PHEV's you reference exist at all is because of the ZEV credits?
If they don't meet minimum numbers in Section 177 States, they are required to either:
a) Pay a penalty
b) Buy credits from a manufacturer with excess (Tesla doesn't produce ICE vehicles so all their credits are available on the open market)

The end result is it effectively costs them more to sell outside of CARB States, so that is where the inventory tends to go. What would you do if your company was faced with the same choice?

For 2019, minimum ZEV % increased from 4.5% to 7%, and TZEV credits (from PHEV's) are limited to 3%. As you can see below, the ramp continues.



The penalty per missing credit is $5K. A Tesla M3 earns 4 credits, which is equivalent to $20K per car in "penalty value". Tesla sold $103 million in ZEV credits in 2018 (they sold a cumulative $890m from 2013-2017). The "free market" value of credits is softening considerably - in earlier years they were going for the full $5K.

A Clarity PHEV earns 1.2 TZEV credit, a Clarity Electric 1.9 ZEV credits.
A Prius Prime would earn .9 TZEV credits, a 40kWh Leaf 2.9 ZEV credits

This is just a very basic look at the rules. For those seeking more confusion:
https://www.arb.ca.gov/msprog/zevpro...325.1564811029
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post #17 of 53 (permalink) Old 08-03-2019, 09:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DucRider View Post
You do realize that the only reason the PHEV's you reference exist at all is because of the ZEV credits?
If they don't meet minimum numbers in Section 177 States, they are required to either:
a) Pay a penalty
b) Buy credits from a manufacturer with excess (Tesla doesn't produce ICE vehicles so all their credits are available on the open market)

The end result is it effectively costs them more to sell outside of CARB States, so that is where the inventory tends to go. What would you do if your company was faced with the same choice?

For 2019, minimum ZEV % increased from 4.5% to 7%, and TZEV credits (from PHEV's) are limited to 3%. As you can see below, the ramp continues.



The penalty per missing credit is $5K. A Tesla M3 earns 4 credits, which is equivalent to $20K per car in "penalty value". Tesla sold $103 million in ZEV credits in 2018 (they sold a cumulative $890m from 2013-2017). The "free market" value of credits is softening considerably - in earlier years they were going for the full $5K.

A Clarity PHEV earns 1.2 TZEV credit, a Clarity Electric 1.9 ZEV credits.
A Prius Prime would earn .9 TZEV credits, a 40kWh Leaf 2.9 ZEV credits

This is just a very basic look at the rules. For those seeking more confusion:
https://www.arb.ca.gov/msprog/zevpro...325.1564811029
WOW, this I did not know about.

So with the higher requirements for 2019, does this mean that Honda feels they can not meet those numbers and are going to kill the Clarity ????
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post #18 of 53 (permalink) Old 08-03-2019, 10:17 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by obermd View Post
Secondary proposal - drop all subsidies from Oil & Gas companies and watch gas prices shoot up. EVs will sell then as well. Either method will eliminate the tilt towards oil/diesel private transportation. The decline of sedan sales since 2012 has tracked almost exactly with the decline of the retail price of gasoline.
This is a popular idea, but in the US, subsidies for oil and gas amount to about $0.28 per barrel or less than 1 cent per gallon.

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post #19 of 53 (permalink) Old 08-03-2019, 12:59 PM
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Originally Posted by 4sallypat View Post
WOW, this I did not know about.

So with the higher requirements for 2019, does this mean that Honda feels they can not meet those numbers and are going to kill the Clarity ????
It means if they are production constrained (battery supply?), more of the cars need to go to Section 177 States or they have to buy credits on the open market (or pay the $5K per credit penalty).

Killing the Clarity would leave them no choice but to buy credits from someone like Tesla. They've done that in the past to the tune of millions of dollars and likely very much want to avoid that scenario. This is one of big attractions of producing the Clarity FCX -it garners 4 credits and those credits "travel" at full value for all Section 177 states (they count towards the requirements even if the vehicle is sold elswhere). Other ZEV credits no longer "travel" and sales numbers/percentages must be met in the states outside of California.

As you can see from the chart, moving forward they have to come up with something they can use the get "pure" ZEV credits as the TZEV Clarity (PHEV) can only be used for a percentage of the total required credits. Unlikely the Clarity FCX will sell in sufficient numbers to satisfy all the ZEV requirements going forward (and the Clarity Electric only earns credits in the sate in which it is sold - CA or OR)

All this will have a very definite impact on inventory availability in states that have not elected to adopt the Section 177 standards. Honda (and all manufacturers) need to give priority to Section 177 States when supply is limited or face monetary consequences.

Gary

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post #20 of 53 (permalink) Old 08-03-2019, 02:09 PM
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It's those same CARB ZEV credits that are dooming PHEVs in this country. The BMW i3 PHEV was a perfect example of this. To get the 4 credits, BMW crippled the PHEV version of the i3 with a gas tank that could not drive the car further than the batteries. BMW also put a very small ICE engine in to prevent the ICE from being able to drive the car. Under CARB, PHEVs receive 1.5 credits and BEVs receive 4 credits. The problem in the US and Canada is that there are vast areas of the country where we have no, or very small, infrastructure to support BEVs. PHEVs are the solution until the infrastructure is in place and there are sufficient BEVs in the light to medium duty truck market to start replacing all the diesel trucks running around rural America.

Look at a heat map of where the charging infrastructure is located. It's along the coastal areas, including Chicago. BEVs simply aren't feasible as a primary/only vehicle outside those areas. PHEVs are the solution for now.

2018 Honda Clarity Touring PHEV - Forest Green w/Tan interior (wife's car)
2017 Volt LT - Heather Gray; black bow ties, Charcoal VoltShelf
2012 Cruze ECO MT (hail totaled 5/8/17 103,600 miles @42.5 MPG)
2010 Mit Lancer GT MT (traded for ECO @31K miles)
2002 Pont Montana AWD - title to son at college graduation
1990 Pont Transport (traded for Montana @240K miles)
1986 Fiero GT MT (traded for Transport - needed more seats)
1985 Fiero 2M4 MT (traded for Fiero GT @8K miles)
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