When I saw the Honda FCEV Concept at the Chicago Auto Show, it looked vaguely familiar, but I couldn’t quite place it. Eventually, I chalked it up to resembling other futuristic concepts I’ve seen. That is until a coworker suggested it looks a lot like the White Tigerzord from Power Rangers.
My first thought was that saying White Tigerzord out loud makes you sound like a huge nerd, but after recoiling, I took to the Internet to see if what he was saying is true.
Now before I get into the comparison, it’s important you understand what you are getting into before you do some Power Rangers research on your own. I’ve watched my share of Power Rangers before and I thought I was pretty well versed on the topic. I knew the tagline was “Go Go Power Rangers”, I remembered a villain named Rita Repulsa and her Putty Patrollers, and I also recalled the Rangers coming together to form a huge robot to battle an equally gigantic enemy at the end of nearly every episode.
After some brief digging, I found out that Power Rangers are not so simple. In fact, Power Rangers are terribly complicated. Those things I knew barely scratched the surface of this labyrinth of a television program. How my 10-year-old-self understood what the hell was going on is a mystery to me.
Nevertheless, I was determined to find out more about this White Tigerzord and compare it to the visually similar Honda FCEV concept. Here’s what I found:
The White Tigerzord is the White Ranger’s personal Zord, which is the huge robot he summons then pilots at the end of episodes when the Rangers’ enemies grow to massive monsters.
The White Tigerzord has two driving modes — Tiger Mode and Warrior Mode — however it only strikes a resemblance to the Honda FCEV Concept while in Tiger Mode, as it stands upright in Warrior Mode. The White Tigerzord also can combine with the other Rangers’ Zords to create the MegaTigerzord, which is the holy-crap-these-enemies-are-screwed warrior alien robot god. Check out the video for a little more clarity on how the White Ranger’s Zord gets down during Morphin’ Time.
Honda FCEV Concept
Short for Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle, the Honda FCEV differs from standard EVs by the way it generates its electricity. Rather than plugging into an outlet like a standard EV, the Honda FCEV Concept and other cars like it use a fuel cell to convert hydrogen to electricity to power an electric motor, which only yields heat as a byproduct. Honda currently builds the FCX Clarity as its hydrogen cell vehicle and is planning to expand on its fuel cell offerings by bringing something like the FCEV Concept into production in the US and Japan in 2015.
White Tigerzord vs Honda FCEV Concept
|White Tigerzord||vs.||Honda FCEV Concept|
|18 Episodes||Number of Appearances||2 Auto Shows|
|White Ranger Commands||Power Source||Fuel-Cell Powertrain|
|Talking Saber named Saba||Starter||Push-Button Start|
|Dragonzord||Predecessors||Honda FCX Clarity|
|115 mph||Top Speed||N/A|
|Until Enemy is Destroyed||Driving Range||300 miles|
Winner of the CarDebate: Honda FCEV Concept
Sure, the White Tigerzord can be summoned by a talking wand and has the ability to turn into a combative robot warrior, but is it environmentally friendly? Probably not. The White Tigerzord was primarily used in the second season of Power Rangers which ran from 1994-95, when zero-emissions was hardly a focus in the automotive world and certainly not a priority in the fictional weaponized robots industry. While we’ll almost certainly see the styling of the Honda FCEV Concept tamed down before the next-generation fuel-cell car goes into production, American Honda president and CEO Tetsuo Iwamura said, “While this car is a concept, it points toward a very real future.”
Since the Tigerzord was destroyed by an ambush from a group of monsters, I have to give the nod to the Honda FCEV Concept, as its future looks to be much brighter than that of the Tigerzord, rest its soul.