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Ford C-Max has 2-year payback period

Ford is bragging about its new C-Max Hybrid utility vehicle and its 47 mpg (city) fuel economy rating. Ford says that its vehicle is at least three mpg better than the Toyota Prius v and has more performance and technology. Ford is also proud that the C-Max is more efficient and powerful all starting at $1,300 less than the Prius v.
Ford is projecting fuel efficiency ratings for the C-Max of 47 mpg in the city and 44 mpg on the highway compared to the Toyota Prius v ratings of 44 mpg city and 40 mpg on the highway. Ford says that the C-Max can travel over 500 miles per tank of fuel and has a total system horsepower rating of 188 HP compared to 134 HP for the Prius.
The C-Max Hybrid will start at $25,995.

“The C-MAX Hybrid builds on Ford’s 20 years of hybrid innovation and fuel-efficient offerings to take on Prius v with better city fuel economy at 47 mpg and at better value – a great chance for us to shake up the hybrid market,” said Raj Nair, group vice president, Global Product Development.
Ford expects that this car will lure in a large percentage of mainstream buyers because the vehicle offers the segments lowest hybrid payback period of two years compared to typical small crossovers. Typically, it takes many years for buyers of a hybrid vehicle to break even compared to purchasing a standard vehicle due to the much higher cost of the a hybrid vehicle. Ford research shows that the typical payback period for a hybrid vehicle in the C-Max's category is four years.

Source: Ford

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Competition win
By quiksilvr on 7/9/2012 10:44:50 AM , Rating: 3
Granted, the Prius V is running on a year old technology, but it is good to see competitors going above and beyond rather than just "good enough" *glares at Honda Insight*

RE: Competition win
By Brandon Hill on 7/9/2012 11:01:26 AM , Rating: 3
Actually, it's more than year-old tech. It's using the same powertrain as the third-generation Prius which was first released in 2009.

RE: Competition win
By quiksilvr on 7/9/2012 11:19:22 AM , Rating: 1
Damn. You intrigued me to do some more research, and I discovered that it's STILL using Nickel Metal Hydride battery, which is cheaper, but is twice the weight, performs poorly in colder temperatures, has a lot fewer recharge cycles, and charges slower.

RE: Competition win
By Brandon Hill on 7/9/2012 11:27:35 AM , Rating: 3
Well, Toyota claims that NiMH is more proven and reliable tech so that's why it's sticking with it. However, I think it all comes down to meeting a certain price point.

In Japan, the Prius v has lithium-ion batteries (which are smaller and lighter as you point out). There's even enough room for a folding third-row seat in the Japanese market vehicle (something that couldn't be done with the bulkier NiMH batteries in the U.S. market vehicle).

RE: Competition win
By rudy on 7/9/2012 12:06:39 PM , Rating: 4
I think you mean something that could not be done with the bulkier humans in the U.S. market.

RE: Competition win
By kmmatney on 7/9/2012 12:41:05 PM , Rating: 2
Toyota is able to keep the number of charge cycles pretty high with the NiMH betteries by never allowing it to drain below 155 capacity, and by never charging it more than 85% capacity. This wastes a lot of capacity, but keeps the number of charge cycles high. My in-laws have 2 Prius cars, and on one the battery pack dies just before the 7 year warranty ended (so it was replaced free), and on the other the battery is still fine after 8 years. Compare this is my 3 Roombas using NiMH batteries - those batteries die in about 18 monthes.

RE: Competition win
By kmmatney on 7/9/2012 12:44:19 PM , Rating: 3
should be: "never allowing it to drain below 15% capacity"

BTW - I don't have a link for this, but this is what he was told when he bought his 2002 Prius. He pre-ordered the first U.S. model, which had a few teething issues, so he was at the dealer quite a bit in the begining.

RE: Competition win
By alpha754293 on 7/9/2012 3:34:51 PM , Rating: 2
2nd gen NA Prius keeps the battery SOC between 40-60%.

3rd gen NA Prius keeps the battery SOC between 40-80%.

They bumped the upper limit up.

Grand C-max
By KnightBreed on 7/9/2012 12:20:05 PM , Rating: 3
I still don't understand why Ford doesn't bring over the Grand C-Max to the U.S. instead of this. Makes no sense since the regular C-Max is basically a Focus hatch. Three rows of seats and sliding doors would give it a better niche between the Focus and Escape/Edge.

RE: Grand C-max
By Tuanies on 7/9/2012 12:40:26 PM , Rating: 2
They were going to bring the Grand C-MAX to the US but cancelled it :(. I was holding out for one but in reality, for the minivan / family market, size matters. We also looked at the Mazda 5, which would've been $24k MSRP with a couple options and a plain CD player without USB, manual sliding doors. A Dodge Caravan AVP (American Value Package) is $25k. We ended up with a 2011 VW Routan SE with navigation and dual rear LCDs for $29,500 with 0% interest financing for 72 months.

If Ford brought the Grand C-MAX to the US and offered the Titanium package, it would cost nearly as much as the other minivans so it would be hard to convince people to buy something smaller at the same price when they have kids. We only have one kid right now but the dog kennel, stuff for the kid, we're happier with the large size since we can just throw everything in the back and go without really packing :).

RE: Grand C-max
By kmmatney on 7/9/2012 12:47:35 PM , Rating: 2
Just looked up the Grand C-Max, and it looks awesome. If you have kids, sliding doors are awesome, since you don't have to worry about the doors banging into the car next to you. I don't know why there are no cars like this in the U.S.

RE: Grand C-max
By Tuanies on 7/9/2012 12:50:16 PM , Rating: 2
The Mazda 5 has sliding doors, similar platform but 6 passengers only. However, its very decontented, there's no power sliding doors, no navigation, no rear seat entertainment or anything.

RE: Grand C-max
By Dr of crap on 7/10/2012 9:17:08 AM , Rating: 2
No Nav and NO movies in the back for the kiddies -- tisk.

And my kids survived without this kind of thing - how did that happen??

And the Nav - really? Can't find your way around at all?

RE: Grand C-max
By BillyBatson on 7/10/2012 1:47:12 PM , Rating: 2
He was making a comparison between the two he didn't say any of that was mandatory for him and even if he did who are you to judge what features are important to someone else? If you have all the highways and streets in the US memorized and don't need a navi good for you.

RE: Grand C-max
By xprojected on 7/9/2012 2:53:43 PM , Rating: 2
Same reason Toyota didn't bring over the 3-row Prius v (aka the "Prius+") to the US -- the seating would be considered too cramped for our liking (they're only slightly larger than their 2-row counterparts). Then you have the added weight and size countering the improved fuel economy. People are looking for a minivan-sized vehicle with hybrid-like mileage, but the combination isn't happening yet.

Sweet baby jeebus!
By Apone on 7/9/2012 12:18:55 PM , Rating: 2
Just checked the C-Max page on Ford's website and I have to be honest, its looks (inside and out) are way sexier than the Prius!

RE: Sweet baby jeebus!
By Mitch101 on 7/9/2012 2:19:26 PM , Rating: 2
sexier than the Prius!

Sexier is not a word I would associate with a Prius.

I like
By Sazabi19 on 7/9/2012 12:30:18 PM , Rating: 2
How they are coming out with hybrids that don't look horrible and that have some actual design elements in them. With them looking better I think this will reach more people, let's face it, if the car didn't look that great most people won't gravitate towards it. Now if only they can get the price point down even farther. Still want more direct injection with turbos and even maybe some turbo diesels.

By BDProductions on 7/18/2012 6:54:04 PM , Rating: 2
And is that Miles per US Gallon?
What size of Gallon are we talking about?

The article VERY carefully uses the word PROJECTED before MPG, meaning it is a calculated number that is not yet a real world number.

I will wait for a 3rd party to review it and respond.

We'll eventually find out what it really gets for fuel economy.

That's the problem when you are part electric.. it's always going to be projected unless you run your charging station off of gasoline also...

That MPG is an imaginary #....

Hmmm, I am finding different numbers elsewhere for range...

Instead of OVER 500 miles, how about ~450 ish?

Unless they didn't change the tank size and were able to still stuff in the batteries, and the weight of the motive and control system didn't hurt economy...

Friction is still a pretty big hindrance.

Still, I say let's just wait and see...


No thanks
By FITCamaro on 7/9/12, Rating: -1
RE: No thanks
By Brandon Hill on 7/9/2012 2:21:10 PM , Rating: 2
How much do you get in just city driving? And why are you comparing a compact sedan to what's essentially a small MPV/crossover?

With that being said, this would have been a perfect vehicle for my wife and I with a new baby in tow. I have a midsize sedan, but packing up the kid, the dog, bouncy seat, pack-n-play, luggage, cooler, food, dog crate, etc made for a very packed car on our trip to the TN mountains for the fourth. Granted, I still managed 33 mpg combined for the trip, but space was at a premium.

Something like the C-Max Hybrid would be the perfect replacement for my wife's Civic and would make a good all-around family hauler. Fold down one of the rear seats and a whole bunch of space opens up and still leaves room for the kid in the car seat.

At at 47/44, it's way more efficient that her '04 Civic EX (26/35). And it's small enough that she wouldn't feel like she's driving a house compared to her Civic.

RE: No thanks
By FITCamaro on 7/9/2012 2:57:25 PM , Rating: 2
That thing is the size of a Focus hatchback. The same size as my Cruze.

Pure city I could probably still rangle up high 30s. Now yes in pure stop and go it'd win.

RE: No thanks
By Brandon Hill on 7/9/2012 3:11:54 PM , Rating: 3
It's the same footprint, but with more space.

Ford Focus Hatch: 23.8 cu ft behind the seats, 44 maximum
Ford C-Max: 25 cu ft behind the seats, 60.7 maximum

The C-Max also has over 3" more legroom and shoulder room in the back seat. It also has 2.5" more headroom front/rear compared to the Focus hatch.

Different strokes for different folks. There's nothing wrong with choice, right? :)

RE: No thanks
By FITCamaro on 7/9/2012 4:06:56 PM , Rating: 2
So I assume you now disagree with the CAFE standards which only have the purpose of making it more difficult to build large vehicles which many people WANT to buy.

RE: No thanks
By Brandon Hill on 7/9/2012 4:11:00 PM , Rating: 2
Large vehicles? I see plenty of Tahoes, Suburbans, Expeditions, Traverse/Acadia/Enclave, and full-size pickups around.

I also see plenty of Chrysler 300s and Chargers, Taurii (is that the correct plural?). In fact, it seems that with every generation, cars get LARGER and not smaller.

RE: No thanks
By FITCamaro on 7/9/2012 4:37:16 PM , Rating: 2
The new CAFE standards were just passed last year. It hasn't taken full effect yet and won't until 2025. And cars get larger because of increased safety standards raising bumper heights and belt lines.

But by 2025, larger vehicles will be harder to produce since with a fleet wide average of 54.5 mpg, even an SUV getting 30 mpg doesn't really cut it. You need vehicles with much HIGHER mileage to offset it.

The administration also did not deny that the new standards would make many small, cheaper vehicles impossible to produce due to the higher costs.

RE: No thanks
By Philippine Mango on 7/9/2012 9:13:43 PM , Rating: 2
Sorry but you're wrong. An SUV getting 30mpg in real world driving WOULD cut it. What you don't understand is that these CAFE standards are not the same as those you see on the Window Sticker... For example, the Prius is rated at 50mpg on the EPA fuel economy cycle, what you'll see on the moroney sticker... However on the CAFE fuel economy cycle, you know, the one where the standard was raised to 54mpg, the Prius is actually rated at 70mpg. Therefore, an SUV that gets 30mpg in real world driving would likely be getting around 44mpg on the CAFE cycle and therefore it wouldn't prevent automakers from making large vehicles like you think it does.

RE: No thanks
By Dr of crap on 7/10/2012 9:23:49 AM , Rating: 2
So, like all things touched buy the govt, the rules are bent and what we the public see isn't the truth.
We see the mpg stickers on the cars and think that is what the CAFE is about, but you say otherwise. Crazy isn't it.

And I've read where the car makers can get "credits" to use towards the CAFE numbers. So it seems, to make the high CAFE numbers by 2025, it WON'T be that hard, since they are farther along than we think!

RE: No thanks
By Philippine Mango on 7/11/2012 3:41:33 PM , Rating: 2
The CAFE numbers USED to be the official fuel economy numbers you would see on the Monroney sticker (sticker that is affixed to all new cars that shows the vehicle's fuel economy) but then drivers complained about the numbers being unrealistic. To appease drivers, in 1985, they increased the strictness of the fuel economy standard that is displayed on the Monroney sticker but not the CAFE standard itself. People weren't happy with those numbers either so in 2007, they increased that standard again. Now, one way to surreptitiously increase the fuel economy standard without giving the news media an easily articulated sound bite would be if the government changed the CAFE testing procedures to match those used already for the Monroney sticker... So 54mpg CAFE fleet wide fuel economy would in actuality be 54mpg fleet wide fuel economy.

RE: No thanks
By jeffkro on 7/9/2012 2:23:25 PM , Rating: 2
What I thought you were anti fuel efficiency

RE: No thanks
By FITCamaro on 7/9/2012 4:07:12 PM , Rating: 3
You probably think a lot of stupid things.

RE: No thanks
By nolisi on 7/9/2012 7:08:59 PM , Rating: 5
So do you. You think your Eco's 27 MPG city= the Max's 47 MPG city. You think the interior room + cargo space of a crossover=the interior room+ cargo space of your eco. You think 188 HP in the max= 138 HP in your eco. That's a lot of stupid right there.

If you do a lot of highway driving, fine, the eco works for you. There's a great deal of the population who live in city where speed limits are lower.

My highway MPG in my Escape Hybrid is 31 mpg. I regularly average 35-36 (when I do mostly city, it hits 40). That's 13% better than EPA. Most standard ICE's have a hard time getting above EPA.

RE: No thanks
By FITCamaro on 7/9/2012 8:15:03 PM , Rating: 2
Maybe you have issues getting well above EPA ratings in the city with your vehicles. But I don't.

RE: No thanks
By BillyBatson on 7/10/2012 3:12:26 AM , Rating: 2
And you say a lot of stupid things

RE: No thanks
By siconik on 7/9/2012 4:08:35 PM , Rating: 5
This is refrain is sooo tiresome.

"I own Car X getting 145 MPG (4x EPA combined cycle average, but normalization is for suckers). The new CAR Y has EPA mileage of only 46 mpg, and of course unlike the car I own it could never get different fuel consumption results based on the usage pattern I current have with my Car X. Why would I ever give up 100 MPG???"

RE: No thanks
By FITCamaro on 7/9/2012 4:41:04 PM , Rating: 2
Actually it more has to do with that the EPA's test methods suck. My mileage is fairly normal for the Cruze Eco. Those who have far steadier drives to work are averaging over 50 mpg.

My point is that you don't need a hybrid for excellent mileage depending on where you live. So I don't like that they're being crammed down our throats on the premise of energy independence when the things we need to make battery packs we're far more dependent on other countries for than we HAVE to be for oil. Especially considering that if we worked to switch to bio-diesel grown via algae, we'd not only be "carbon nuetral" (since all the carbon added to the air would have come from the air), we wouldn't have to massively change our nations infrastructure.

RE: No thanks
By Targon on 7/9/2012 5:59:01 PM , Rating: 2
It isn't ONLY about fuel economy, but also about the size of the vehicle and how powerful the engine is. Yes, your Cruz Eco gets good fuel economy, but it feels like a wind-up car, and may as well have a large "key" sticking out the back for you to turn before you get in. My 2012 Focus can get 42MPG in many situations on my daily commute if I don't run into much stop and go traffic, yet it has more horsepower, and is better all around.

A hybrid gets better fuel economy for CITY driving, which is the type of driving that would kill both of our cars when it comes to fuel economy. I am more annoyed by having Ethanol forced on us since all it does is reduce fuel economy with zero benefit to the environment.

RE: No thanks
By FITCamaro on 7/9/2012 8:25:13 PM , Rating: 2
You have 15 more horsepower in stock form. My car has 180-200 hp when I want it. And actually tuners have found that the stock tune can command 200 hp when necessary. And you call my car a wind up toy when across the rev range, I've got more torque. My car is by no means quick, but yours isn't either.

Yes in true stop and go a hybrid will do better. But I don't live in an area where that is that big a problem. And I don't like them trying to force cars on us to appease a select group of people.

I'll agree on the ethanol thing.

RE: No thanks
By Dr of crap on 7/10/2012 9:31:45 AM , Rating: 2
It isn't about fuel economy, YET you have a hybrid - hmmmm.

And my motorcycle that I drive to work 60 miles round trip gets me about 58 mpg and the ride is all around better than your hybrid. ( my opinion )

So it's all about the drivers preception of what HE thinks is best for himself.
Stop trying to start a fued!

RE: No thanks
By Blight AC on 7/10/2012 1:01:02 PM , Rating: 2
He said it isn't "ONLY" about fuel economy. Although, the I have to wonder, why not a Diesel, like a VW TDI? With Diesels across the range, you have a lot of options to choose from and they all have better handling, quality, and performance than Hybrids with similar MPGs. There's a premium on the diesel fuel over regular, but isn't it worth it if it's not only about the fuel economy?

Either way, it all comes down to people defending their own car, like for some reason they feel they need to defend their choice whenever a new vehicles comes along.

RE: No thanks
By Masospaghetti on 7/12/2012 1:40:22 AM , Rating: 2
The point is that your Eco is rated at 28 MPG city with a manual transmission, and the C-max is rated at 47 MPG city with more interior volume, more horsepower, and an automatic transmission.

I'm comparing EPA numbers because, as already mentioned, EPA numbers are the only standard and anecdotal MPG figures are worse than useless.

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