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How Honda’s Hydrogen-Powered Vehicle Could Impact Your Auto Mechanic Career

Published on November 5, 2015 by in Blog, CATI

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Honda has left the auto world buzzing after unveiling its new hydrogen-powered fuel cell vehicle (FCV), the Honda Clarity, at the 2015 Tokyo Motor Show last week. The Clarity will be released in spring 2016 and will only be available in limited quantities in Japan. However, Honda is hopeful that it will soon be ready to mass market the technology featured in this vehicle. The auto company will have competition from the Toyota Mirai, which is due for release approximately six months earlier.

For those pursuing auto mechanic careers, the development of green technology presents a host of exciting possibilities and challenges. Hydrogen-powered cars are designed differently than traditional gasoline vehicles. If the technology were to catch on, even the most experienced mechanics might require new training in order to service these vehicles.

Read on to find out more about the Honda Clarity and hydrogen fuel cell technology, and what means for those planning to enroll in auto mechanic courses.

The Honda Clarity: A Guide for Students in Auto Mechanic Training School

Auto mechanic training school students are sure to be impressed by some of the Clarity’s features. Despite the motor’s near –silent acceleration, it boasts an impressive 134 hp and 189 lb-ft of torque. The tailpipe emits nothing but water vapor, and the car can travel approximately 640km before refuelling!

The vehicle’s design represents something of a leap forward for FCVs. Previous fuel cell systems were bulkier and took up valuable space in cars. The Clarity’s system is the size of regular V6 engine and fits under the hood, giving the new model more a much more conventional and attractive design.

Check out the Honda Clarity in this video:

Hydrogen Technology: The Future of Your Auto Mechanic Career?

FCVs are powered by a fuel cell stack that channels hydrogen and oxygen to create a charge to propel the vehicle’s electric motor. Like electric cars, the vehicles have zero tailpipe emissions, but can go far longer distances and are much quicker to recharge.

For mechanics, FCVs present a new and interesting challenge. Fuel cell stacks are made up of a series of field flow plates and are very different systems from gasoline engines, which will be challenging for both experienced mechanics and students alike.

Auto Companies Work Together to Overcome Hydrogen Tech Challenges

One major drawback of FCVs at present is the current lack of hydrogen filling stations. Hydrogen storage tanks are also difficult to work out how to mass produce affordably. However, the industry is working to find solutions.

Honda and GM recently announced a partnership to develop lower cost fuel cell systems and storage tanks, while both Honda and Toyota have offered loans in support of a government grant scheme to install Hydrogen stations in California. Honda is also developing a compact Smart Hydrogen Station, which would allow drivers to produce their own hydrogen at home.

Becoming a Mechanic in a Changing World: Hybrids vs. Hydrogen Vehicles

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If you’re interested in becoming a mechanic, it’s difficult to predict what sort of system you might end up working on in the future. FCVs appear to be battling with hybrids to become the industry standard. Automakers appear to be hedging their bets by investing in both: at the Tokyo Motor Show, Honda unveiled its new Acura NSX hybrid at the same time as announcing its partnership with GM and launching the Clarity. With merits to both, who knows what the car of the future will look like?

Are you interested in pursuing an auto mechanic career?

Visit CATI for more information or to speak to an advisor.

 
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