2013 Honda Fit EV

Coda, Honda and Tesla duking it out for longest electric car driving range

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Coda Automotive and Honda trade press releases over electric car driving range, while Tesla Motors is preparing to start shipping the Model S to customers with a range about 3 times that of either the Coda or Honda Fit EV.

Last week Honda shared news that the Honda Fit EV had been awarded the best fuel efficiency of any car, at 118 MPGe, and that its EPA rated 82 mile driving range bests the other electric cars. While congratulations are due to Honda for building a highly efficient car, Coda Automotive today posted a blog post reminding us the EPA rating on their all electric car beats the Honda Fit EV driving range. No word from Tesla Motors whether they'll bother to comment about electric car driving range, given that the Tesla Model S has a 300+ miles range.

What's telling is which competitors an automaker names when comparing features on their car to other cars from other manufacturers. For example, when Honda discussed its fuel efficiency and driving range achievements, the company named the Ford Focus Electric, Nisan Leaf and Mitsubishi i-MiEV. Not named was the Coda electric car, nor were plug-in hybrids named like the Chevy Volt or Prius Plug-In. Likewise when Coda followed suit in discussing their efficiency and range achievements, the Ford Focus Electric, Honda Fit EV, Nisan Leaf and Mitsubishi i-MiEV were all mentioned, but the Tesla Model S was not.

The Honda Fit EV, which is due for first customer deliveries this summer, will be available only under a $389/month lease, and then only to customers in California. It has a 20 kilowatt-hour battery pack, and due to a highly efficient drive train that consumes only 29 kilowatt-hours per 100 miles, the car offers an 82 mile EPA rated driving range, and 132/105/118 city/highway/combined miles/gallon equivalent (MPGe).

By Honda's telling of "which electric car has the best driving range," these numbers beat the Ford Focus Electric (105 MPGe, 76-mile range), Nissan Leaf (99 MPGe, 73-mile range), and Mitsubishi i-MiEV (112 MPGe, 62-mile range).

As noted, this comparison leaves out the Coda electric car. By its EPA ratings, the Coda consumes 46 kilowatt-hours per 100 miles of driving, and due to its 31 kilowatt-hour battery pack, the Coda electric car has an 88 mile EPA rated driving range, and 77/68/73 city/highway/combined miles/gallon equivalent (MPGe). While the Coda does manage to turn in a longer driving range, it's burdened by inefficiency causing it to consume more kilowatt-hours per mile than the other electric cars. Where the Honda Fit EV has a yearly fuel cost of just $500, the Coda yearly fuel cost is $850.


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I read on the Model S fact sheet that we can assume 300 mWh per mile.