The production version of Honda’s hydrogen-powered FCEV concept remains on target for release in Japan by March 2016, and it’s going to be followed by at least two more vehicles that have some form of electric powertrain. Probably more than two, but we can’t be more specific than that. This is what we learned today from a speech by the new president and CEO of Honda Motor Company, Takahiro Hachigo.
Speaking about the two main themes he sees for the future of the automaker (the six-region global operation structure and “continuous development of challenging products unique to Honda”), Hachigo once again confirmed an on-sale date for the production version of the FCEV concept that Honda has been trotting out at auto shows for a few years now as happening, “before the end of the current fiscal year” which ends March 31, 2016.
He also said something broader about the company’s vision for electric cars: “As the next-generation of mobility products, Honda will evolve products that use electricity as a core technology,” he said. While we don’t yet know what the electric vehicle products are, Hachigo’s statements echo those of Mike Accavitti, senior vice president of American Honda, from when the FCEV concept was unveiled: “The Honda FCEV Concept not only sets our direction for our next generation fuel-cell vehicle in 2015, but for future improvements in electric drive technology.” Honda previously promised new all-electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles by 2018, and today’s comments signal that that plan is still in place. Things may change though, since Honda’s original release date for the FCEV was 2015.