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Honda to debut electric vehicle in China next year

Japanese automaker plans a range of eco-cars for the market

TOKYO -- Honda Motor will roll out its first electric vehicle for the Chinese market in 2018, seeking to ride the country's campaign against air pollution.

Honda will develop an EV dedicated to China "quickly" for release, Yasuhide Mizuno, chief operating officer for China, said in an interview with The Nikkei and other media organizations in Shanghai on Wednesday. The Japanese automaker is also considering debuting a plug-in hybrid in 2018, two years ahead of schedule, while planning to release a fuel-cell vehicle as well, Mizuno said.

An electric model of Honda's Fit subcompact is available for lease in Japan and the U.S. Tests have been performed on it in China since 2011.

Under Honda's goal, eco-cars such as hybrids, plug-in hybrids, full electrics and fuel-cell vehicles will account for two-thirds of its global sales in 2030. The company will release the electric and plug-in hybrid versions of the Clarity in the U.S. this year.

Nissan Motor offers a retooled version of its Leaf EV in China as the Venucia e30.

(Nikkei)

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