Unveiling the new 2017 Accord Hybrid is part of Honda’s strategy to boost sales of hybrids, electric, and fuel cell vehicles in the near future.

Revealed yesterday with the new Honda Clarity series, Honda expects to double sales of 2017 Accord Hybrid when it goes on sale this spring. Honda unveiled the 2017 Accord Hybrid at a media reception Wednesday in Detroit.

“In this era of sub $2 per gallon gas, we know this is a challenging target,” said John Mendel, executive vice president for Honda of America.

The new Accord Hybrid is expected to get 49 miles per gallon in the city and 47 mpg on the highway for a combined 48 miles per gallon under new, more stringent U.S. EPA tests. That’s more conservative than the previous 52 or more mpg that would have been ranked under the old tests prior to the 2017 model year, Honda said.

Better fuel economy and other improvements will mean that the 2017 Accord Hybrid will become “a new volume sales pillar,” Mendel said.

Doubling last year’s number won’t be especially high. Honda sold about 14,000 Accord Hybrids globally in 2015; the automaker had stopped production about half-way through the year to move production to Japan.

The new Accord Hybrid is equipped with a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and Honda’s two-motor hybrid system which will produce 212 horsepower. That engine offers 16 horsepower more than the 2015 Accord Hybrid and makes the Accord Hybrid the most powerful mid-size hybrid sedan, according to Honda.

SEE ALSO: Honda Clarity Range Expands, Will Include All-Electric Version

It competes directly with the Ford Fusion Hybrid, Toyota Camry Hybrid, Hyundai Sonata hybrid and Kia Optima Hybrid. The Accord Hybrid came in fifth place in U.S. sales last year, according to HybridCars.

The Accord Hybrid will be one of several new vehicles Honda will be launching in the coming years. The company’s strategy will be selling two hybrid, battery electric, plug-in hybrid, or fuel cell vehicles for every conventional gasoline vehicle by 2030.

USA Today