Honda will make a major shift to the fuel cell battery technology that will allow for better fuel efficiency and more battery life in the next-generation Accord, the automaker announced Monday.
The Honda Accord will have a redesigned 2.0-liter engine with a new fuel cell system that uses hydrogen as a fuel source.
The new battery technology allows the engine to operate for about six months at full capacity.
The new battery system can be combined with other hydrogen-fueled engines that also use hydrogen.
Honda said it expects to have a fuel cell-powered vehicle available in 2021, but it will not announce a timeframe for when that will happen.
“With the latest developments in fuel cell technology, we are confident that we can deliver an all-new Accord that delivers an outstanding driving experience and delivers more value to consumers,” Honda Chief Executive Takashi Iwata said in a statement.
The Accord, Honda’s best-selling model, will be the first model of its kind to use a hybrid battery.
It will also be the only model to include a fully electric powertrain.
Hyundai Motor said it is working with Honda on a hybrid system for the 2017 Accord, and the two companies said they expect to announce a date for the system by the end of the year.
The automaker has a long history with fuel cell vehicles.
In 2015, Honda unveiled the first fuel cell sedan, the Accord Sport.
The car uses a hybrid motor that runs on electricity, but the engine is made by Honda’s sister company, Honda Motor Co. and produces around 5.4 horsepower.
Hyosung also unveiled a hydrogen fuel cell electric car, the S60, in 2016.
That vehicle uses a fuel cells battery to produce power.
Honda is also working on a hydrogen electric sports car, called the S70, which is slated to go on sale in 2020.