2020 Honda Clarity Plug-in Hybrid

#11
in Sedans
2020 MODEL
$33,400 - $36,600

8.1

Overall Rating

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2020 Honda Clarity plug-in hybrid Complete In-depth Review & Buying Guide


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Anuron Deka Content Writer Updated on: November 13, 2019


Honda brought a lot of 'Clarity' about its future plans when they first debuted their Clarity FCX in 2016. Since then, people have looked up to Honda in anticipation of their next product. For 2020, Honda has introduced a new rendition of its popular Clarity Plug-In Hybrid vehicle. The 2020 Honda Clarity goes directly against the Chevrolet Volt Hybrid, Hyundai Ioniq Plug-in Hybrid, and the Toyota Prius Prime to stake a claim as the best Hybrid in the market.

Available in just 2 Trims, namely the Standard and the Touring and priced at $33,400 and $36,600 respectively, the 2020 Honda Clarity gets a lot of savvy, convenience and safety features as standard. For people, who want a zero-emission vehicle, Honda offers an All-Electric version of the Clarity as well. The 2020 Fuel Cell powered Clarity is yet to be made official, as of writing this review.

See detailed review »

Pros

Ample cargo space

Spacious cabin

Supple Ride Quality

Good Driving Range

Great acoustic insulation in the cabin

Cons

Unintuitive Infotainment system

Polarizing design language

What's New?

Improved mileage

Small tweaks in the infotainment system


Features

vehicle bio

base price

$33400

bodystyle

4dr Sedan

passenger capacity

5

drivetrain

FWD

engine type

displacement

91 cu.in.

horsepower

212 hp @ 5500 rpm

torque

99 lbs.-ft @ 5000 rpm

transmission

continuously variable-speed automatic

chassis

frame type

Unibody

suspension front

Independent front strut suspension w/anti-roll bar

suspension rear

Independent rear multi-link suspension w/anti-roll bar

brake rotors (f/r)

62.2/62.5

dimensions

wheelbase

108.3 in.

length

192.7 in.

width

73.9 in.

height

58.2 in.

curb weight

4052 lbs.

capacity

passenger volume

101.5 cu ft.

performance

zero to 60 mph

8.9 sec.

fuel economy

city/combined/highway

44/42/40 mpg

ev range

308 mi.

highway range (evs/hybrids)

280 mi.

warranty

basic warranty

3 yr. / 36000 mi.

drivetrain warranty

5 yr. / 60000 mi.

corrosion warranty

5 yr. / unlimited

roadside assistance

3 yr. / 36000 mi.



Styles

 2020 Honda Clarity plug-in hybrid in Crimson Pearl color  2020 Honda Clarity plug-in hybrid in Crystal Black Pearl color  2020 Honda Clarity plug-in hybrid in Modern Steel Metallic color  2020 Honda Clarity plug-in hybrid in Platinum White Pearl color  2020 Honda Clarity plug-in hybrid in Solar Silver Metallic color
Crimson Pearl

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Features

8.1

Exterior

8.0

8.1

OVERALL RATING

Trims and Configurations

MSRP


 2020 Honda Clarity plug-in hybrid Base

Base

power
212 hp @ 5500 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
42 combined

$33,400


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
4dr Sedan (1.5L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT) Starting at $33,400 MSRP (44/42/40) 212 hp @ 5500 rpm, 1.5 L, I-4, regular unleaded
continuously variable-speed automatic front wheel drive 5

 2020 Honda Clarity plug-in hybrid Touring

Touring

power
103 hp @ 5500 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
42 combined

$36,600


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
Touring 4dr Sedan (1.5L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT) Starting at $36,600 MSRP (44/42/40) 103 hp @ 5500 rpm, 1.5 L, I-4, regular unleaded
continuously variable-speed automatic front wheel drive 5

Expert Review

8.1

Overall Rating


The Honda Clarity is one of the most common 'Eco-Friendly' cars you will see on the roads of the US. The Clarity has managed to change the perception of 'Hybrid' cars among the masses in terms of what they have to offer. The Clarity offers a good performance and a great range. The 2 available trims are loaded with a lot of features as standard and most passengers won't complain about the same. Honda hasn't compromised on its 'Man Maximum, Machine Minimum' philosophy as the Clarity offers a generously spacious cabin and cargo space.

2020 Honda Clarity Plug-in Hybrid Angular Front View
2020 Honda Clarity Plug-in Hybrid Angular Front View
2020 Honda Clarity Plug-in Hybrid Angular Rear View
2020 Honda Clarity Plug-in Hybrid Angular Rear View

8.1/10
Features

 
 
 
 

8.0/10
Exterior

 
 
 
 

2020 Honda Clarity plug-in hybrid Features

8.1/10

Honda is offering the 2020 Clarity in just 2 trims namely the Standard and the Touring. Both the Trims come decked with a whole plethora of features that will please most people.

Trim

Standard

Touring

MSRP

$33,400

$36,600

Features

Aluminum Hood/Fenders/Trunk/Doors

Adds/Upgrades from Plug-In

 

Variable intermittent Windshield Wipers

Honda Satellite-Linked Navigation System with Voice Recognition and Honda HD Digital Traffic

 

Smart Entry with Walk Away Auto Lock

Memory Settings for the Driver Seat

 

LED Taillights, Turn Indicators and DRL

4 Way Power Adjustable Front Passenger's Seat

 

Powered ORVM with Turn Indicators

Perforated Leather-Trimmed Seats

 

LED Headlights with Auto-On/Off

Leather Wrapped Steering Wheel

   Dual Zone Auto Climate Control System

 

   Push Button Start

 

   Auto-Dimming RVM with Homelink System

 

  8' Touchscreen Infotainment System 

 

   Apple CarPlay and Android Auto

 

   SiriusXM/HD Radio/Bluetooth/Pandora

 

We Recommend

The Standard Plugin Hybrid Trim offers a lot of bang for the buck and hence is the trim to go for.

2020 Honda Clarity plug-in hybrid Engine and Performance

By default, the plug-in Clarity operates solely on battery power until its charge is depleted, and then reverts to being a conventional hybrid'-TheCarConnection.com

Engine and Transmission

Powering the 2020 Honda Clarity PHEV is a 1.5L 4 Cylinder Motor and an AC Permanent magnet Synchronous Electric Motor which in totality, generates 212 hp. The Gas powered Motor comes with Honda's famed i-VTEC(Intelligent Variable Valve Timing and Lift Electronic Control) technology, that provides sufficient boost while performing overtaking maneuvers or stepping hard on the gas. In day to day City Riding conditions, the Clarity feels just like another Gas powered Sedan as the Engine is quick to respond.

A 17KWh battery comes as the part of the Hybrid System, which can be charged in just 2.5hrs when connected to a 240V source. The charging time however goes to 12hrs when connected to a 120V source. Honda is coupling a 6.6KW 32Amp charger with the Clarity as standard.

Models

Honda Clarity PHEV

Hyundai Ioniq hybrid Blue hatchback

Toyota Prius Prime*

Chevrolet Volt LT hatchback

MSRP

$33,400

$23,285

$27,300

$34,395

Engine

1.5L i4

1.6L i4

1.8L i4

1.5L i4

Transmission

Continuously variable automatic

6 Speed DCT

Continuously Variable Automatic

1-speed direct drive

Horsepower

212hp

139 hp@ 5700rpm

121 hp@ 5200rpm

149 hp@ 5600rpm

Torque

232 lb-ft @0-2000rpm

109 ft-lbs@ 4000rpm

105 ft-lbs@ 3600rpm

294 ft-lbs

Transmission duties are performed by an E-CVT transmission that comes with Paddle Shifters. The drivers have the option of switching to the Sport mode as and when needed for quicker response from the engine and the transmission. The Transmission is one of the smoothest in the category and there is seem less transition of power between the Gas Powered Motor and the Electric Motor.

Acceleration

In terms of outright acceleration, drivers may be confused as to which powertrain is supplying power to the front wheels as the drive is seem less. Despite the high curb weight, the Honda manages to keep pace on its own with its superb drivetrain. As soon as you step on the gas, there is no kick in the pants feel but you do feel the Engine pulling you forward with some force.

Models

Honda Clarity LX sedan

Hyundai Ioniq PHEV Blue hatchback

Toyota Prius Prime*

Chevrolet Volt LT hatchback

0-60 MPH

8 sec

8.7 sec

N/A

8 sec

Quarter mile

16 sec

16.5 sec

N/A

N/A

Engine

1.5L i4

1.6L i4

1.8L i4

1.5L i4

Emission

(Tons/yr of CO2 Emissions @ 15K mi/year)

3.4

3.0

3.8

N/A

The Chevrolet Volt, with its powerful engine matches the Honda's performance and allows to sustain those speeds for a longer time due to the same engine power. The Heavier Hyundai and the Ioniq are expectedly slower because of their power difference and weight.

Ride and Handling

The 2020 Honda Clarity's ride comfort is similar to what other Vehicles in this price point offer. While driving on City roads and at City speeds, the suspension manages to soak up the minor cracks present on the road. It's the big speed humps or potholes, where the suspension seems to be working hard, to maintain the poise of the Clarity.

Despite being a Heavy Car, the Clarity feels easy to maneuver around the city. While doing school zone speeds or city speeds, the Clarity maintains good composure. The Grip from the Tires is respectable while not best, in the class. The Suspension however, seems to be working very hard in maintaining a proper balance of the Car while doing Motorway speeds.

Braking

The Braking performance of the Clarity is adequate at best with the brakes, feeling spongy and slow to react during heavy application. This is a trait that is common to all cars in the segment but the Honda Clarity, manages to deliver a slightly better performance in terms of the others.

Model

Honda Clarity PHEV sedan

Hyundai Ioniq hybrid Blue hatchback

Toyota Prius Prime*

Chevrolet Volt LT hatchback

Brake Front (in.)

11.1

11.2

10

11

Brake Rear (in.)

10.2

11.2

10.2

10

Curb Weight (lbs.)

2987

3318

3075

3519

60-0 MPH (ft.)

121

N/A

N/A

N/A

One of the biggest positives of the Honda comes in the form of the Regenerative braking that stores the energy produced during braking and feeds it to the battery for charging. The Regen Braking is adjustable according to the level of requirement by the driver.

2020 Honda Clarity plug-in hybrid Fuel Economy

The Honda Clarity, has evolved over the years in terms of design, technology and features. Honda has worked hard on its powertrains over the years and the Clarity bears the fruits of the same. The Honda generates a respectable overall 42MPG of Mileage Figure, which is a standard figure in this range.

Model

Honda Clarity PHEV sedan

Hyundai Ioniq hybrid Blue hatchback

Toyota Prius Prime*

Chevrolet Volt LT hatchback

MPG (city)

44

-

54

42

MPG (highway)

40

-

50

42

MPG (combined)

42

52

52

42

Range (miles) (Combined)

294

630

587.6

373.2

Tank Capacity (gal)

7

11.4

11.3

8.9

What is impressive though, is the fact that the Clarity can be partly driven in Zero Emission mode while delivering a reduced range overall. On the Other hand, The Prius and the Ioniq with their less powerful engines and big fuel tanks leverage them, a better range over the Honda.

2020 Honda Clarity plug-in hybrid Interior

Things are better inside, with a handsome and luxurious-feeling interior design'-TheCarConnection.com

Layout, Seating and Comfort

Despite being a PHEV, the 2020 Honda Clarity is a pretty practical Car, to live with. The Clarity can seat 5 people relatively easily while 4 people can seat with utmost comfort. Visibility is amazing from both the Front Glass and the side glass and passengers inside the same won't complain about the lack of it.

The Buttons have been placed with a lot of thought and most people, won't have much difficulties in reaching the buttons and understanding their usage. The Seating position may be higher than most other cars in the segment to most people but this gives a commanding view of the road in front.

Model

Honda Clarity PHEV sedan

Hyundai Ioniq hybrid Blue hatchback

Toyota Prius Prime*

Chevrolet Volt LT hatchback

Passenger capacity

5

5

5

5

Front (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.)

39.3/56.9/42.3

39.1/56.1/42.2

39.4/55/42.3

37.8/56.5/42.1

Second

(Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.)

36.9/55.0/37.4

37.4/55.0/35.7

37.4/53/33.4

35.8/53.2/34.7

The Seat Comfort of the 2020 Honda Clarity is decent in most cases, with the seats having a very soft level of padding on them. This makes for a comfortable ride on short distances but gets tiring when doing longer trips. The Cabin of the Clarity is well insulated from the outside world and is a quiet place to be in.

Cargo Capacity

The Honda Clarity, in its segment offers the most cargo space at 15.5 cubic feet. The space is not only big, but is very usable as the low loading bay allows for easy access to the boot. What comes as a bonus is the fact that the rear seats can be folded down for some more space when needed.

Model

Honda Clarity PHEV

Hyundai Ioniq hybrid Blue hatchback

Toyota Prius Prime*

Chevrolet Volt LT hatchback

Cargo Volume (ft.3)

15.5

23.0

24.6

10.6

The Chevrolet Volt offers the least cargo space in the segment while the bigger Toyota Prius Prime, comes in at the top of the chart. The Hyundai Ioniq manages to be the closest in terms of Space to the Prius.

Infotainment and Interior Features

The Infotainment System of the 2020 Honda Clarity, comes with a host of features that you would find in other cars of the segment as well. We do however have to say that the competitors offer a better layout for the interface of the Infotainment System and Honda needs to work on the same.

That being said, here are some of the few features, you will find inside the 2020 Clarity

  • Remote Climate Pre-Conditioning
  • Leather Trimmed Seating
  • Leather Wrapped Steering Wheel
  • Driver's Seat with 8 way power adjust and 2 position memory
  • 4 way power adjust front passenger seat
  • Voice Recognition
  • Push Button start
  • Auto Dimming Rear View Mirror with Home Link
  • Illuminated Power Window Switches with Auto Up/Down feature
  • Illuminated Steering Wheel Controls with Tilt and Telescoping adjust
  • 8' Touchscreen Infotainment System with 180W Audio System
  • Apple Car Play, Android Auto Compatibility with USB, AUX, HD Radio

2020 Honda Clarity plug-in hybrid Exterior

8.0/10

A prominent horizontal spoiler on the trunk lid disguises the otherwise rounded, falling-away lines of the rear'-TheCarConnection.com

Design and Dimensions

Talking about the design of the 2020 Clarity, the Front end of the Honda looks similar to other cars in the Honda family. What tends to be different is the side profile and the Rear End. The Side profile looks similar to a certain other Japanese Car and the side rear fender may not be pleasing to everyone's eye. Overall, the design looks very busy from all angles but that won't make it a bad looking car.

Model

Honda Clarity LX sedan

Hyundai Ioniq hybrid hatchback

Toyota Prius Prime*

Chevrolet Volt LT hatchback

Curb weight (lbs.)

2987

2996

3075

3519

Length(in)

183.6

176.0

178.7

180.4

Width(in)

71.6

71.7

69.3

71.2

Height(in)

55.5

56.9

58.1

56.4

Ground clearance (in)

N/A

5.3

N/A

N/A

Wheelbase (in)

106.3

106.3

106.3

106.1

Track width (in) F/R

60.9/61.6

61.5/62.1

60.2/60.6

60.6/61.8

In terms of the Dimensions, the Clarity is very similar in size to its other sibling, the Honda Accord. It looks like a Tall Car from the Rear while the sloping roof line, does add some sporty appeal to the sedan. The Car has a good road presence and doesn't look small while compared to other cars.

Exterior Features

In terms of the Exterior Features on offer, Honda has offered plenty of Equipment on the outside of the Clarity that is in line with other Cars of the segment and adds a lot of convenience to the passengers as well. Some of the Standard Safety Features includes

  • Variable Intermittent Windshield Wipers
  • Remote Entry
  • LED Taillights
  • Body Colored Deck lid Spoiler
  • Smart Entry with Walk Away Auto Lock
  • Body Colored Power Side Mirrors
  • Fin Type Roof Mounted Antenna
  • LED Turn Indicators
  • LED Headlights with Auto On/Off

2020 Honda Clarity plug-in hybrid Safety

Honda has always prioritized on the safety provided in its Cars and the 2020 Clarity is no different. The Clarity, comes in with a whole host of Safety Features as Standard to offer complete peace of mind to the drivers and the passengers inside the cabin.

Some of the standard Safety Features inside the 2020 Clarity include

  • Vehicle Stability Assist with Traction Control
  • ABS with EBD and Brake Assist
  • Multi Angle Rear View Camera with Dynamic Guidelines
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System
  • LED DRL
  • Forward Collision, Lane Departure Warning
  • Collision mitigating braking system
  • Side Curtain Airbags with Rollover Sensor
  • Driver's Knee Airbag and Front Side Airbags
  • LATCH for all rows
  • Child-Proof rear Door Locks

2020 Honda Clarity plug-in hybrid Competition

Honda Clarity PHEV vs. Toyota Prius Prime

The Toyota and the Honda are similar in a lot of ways and they can't go unnoticed. The Prius comes behind with a long legacy of being one of the most trusted Eco-Friendly Vehicles in the world. The Toyota and Honda offer a very comfortable and relaxed Interior area but the Toyota offers a higher Cargo Space and Fuel Efficiency figure. The Honda on the other hand offers a higher performance and doesn't compromise on the fuel economy as well.

Honda Clarity PHEV vs. Chevrolet Volt

The Chevrolet Volt has one of the most powerful and responsive engine in its class and Chevrolet bets on the same, while selling the Volt. The Handling dynamics of the Volt ranks among the best in the segment as it offers great high speed stability and composure. However, in every other respect, it's the Clarity that has an edge over the Volt. The Honda offers gargantuan amount space on the inside and the Cargo and feels better built and upmarket than the Volt.

Honda Clarity PHEV vs Hyundai Ioniq

The Hyundai Ioniq managed to disrupt the sales of the Popular Prius, when it first arrived in the scene. Just like the Clarity, the Ioniq is available in an All Electric, PHEV and Fuel Cell Avatar. The Ioniq offers a good fuel efficiency figure and offers some good features as well. The Honda Clarity however feels the better built car on the whole both on the inside and the outside and gives a whole lot more, when it comes to the standard safety features on offer.

2020 Honda Clarity plug-in hybrid Final Verdict

The 2020 Honda Clarity PHEV is another one of those cars that shows us that the future isn't dull. The 2020 doesn't feel like the initial crop of Electric Cars that surfaced the American Shores. The Sophisticated Honda Powertrain, which combines the 4 Cylinder Gas Motor and the Electric Motor work beautifully well in tandem, to create a 'cGuilt' free drive, while giving you the feel of driving a Normal car. So, if you want a Vehicle that can be charged on the go in a Charging Station and be practical for day to day usage, look no further than the 2020 Clarity PHEV.