2019 Honda Clarity Fuel Cell vs. 2018 BMW 330e

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Honda Clarity Fuel Cell are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The BMW 330e doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.

Both the Clarity Fuel Cell and the 330e have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights and rearview cameras.

Warranty

Honda’s powertrain warranty covers the Clarity Fuel Cell 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than BMW covers the 330e. Any repair needed on the motor, fuel cell, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 5 years or 60,000 miles. Coverage on the 330e ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are over 3 times as many Honda dealers as there are BMW dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Clarity Fuel Cell’s warranty.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Clarity Fuel Cell gets better fuel mileage than the 330e running its gasoline engine (68 city/67 hwy MPGe vs. 28 city/34 hwy).

The Clarity Fuel Cell’s maximum driving range is 360 miles on pure hydrogen. The 330e has to start its internal combustion engine after only 13 miles.

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Clarity Fuel Cell has larger tires than the 330e (235/45R18 vs. 225/50R17). The Clarity Fuel Cell’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the 330e (235/45R18 vs. 225/45R18).

The Clarity Fuel Cell’s tires provide better handling because they have a lower 45 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the 330e’s standard 50 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Clarity Fuel Cell has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the 330e.

Suspension and Handling

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Clarity Fuel Cell is 1.9 inches wider in the front and .7 inches wider in the rear than on the 330e.

Chassis

As tested by Car and Driver while under full throttle, the interior of the Clarity Fuel Cell is quieter than the 330e (69 vs. 73 dB).

Passenger Space

Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the EPA rates the Clarity Fuel Cell a Mid-size car, while the 330e is rated a Compact.

The Clarity Fuel Cell has 5.3 cubic feet more passenger volume than the 330e (101.5 vs. 96.2).

The Clarity Fuel Cell has .2 inches more front legroom, 4.6 inches more front shoulder room, 1.1 inches more rear legroom and 2.2 inches more rear shoulder room than the 330e.

Cargo Capacity

The Clarity Fuel Cell has a larger trunk than the 330e (11.8 vs. 10.8 cubic feet).

Ergonomics

The Clarity Fuel Cell has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The 330e doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the Clarity Fuel Cell has standard extendable sun visors. The 330e doesn’t offer extendable visors.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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