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The C-MAX Energi is expected to be America's cheapest and most fuel-efficient hybrid plug-in

Ford's upcoming C-MAX Energi passed up the Toyota Prius as the most fuel-efficient plug-in hybrid available in America.

The C-MAX Energi received an EPA rating of 108 miles-per-gallon equivalent (MPGe) city rating and 100 MPGe combined rating. This beats the Toyota Prius' combined rating by 5 MPGe.

The C-MAX Hybrid, which is grouped in with the C-MAX Energi as Ford's first hybrid-only line of vehicles, also beats the Toyota Prius v by up to 7 MPG. The C-MAX Hybrid received EPA rating of 47 MPG city and 47 MPG highway for a combined 47 MPG.

This high EPA rating places the C-MAX Energi in a special group of vehicles that have 100 MPGe or greater. This group, created by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), also includes the Ford Focus Electric at 110 MPGe city and the Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid with an expected MPGe of over 100. Having several vehicles in this class definitely makes Ford's lineup more appealing.

Not only will the C-MAX Energi be America's most fuel efficient vehicle, it will also be the most affordable. It has a starting price of $29,995, but is eligible for the federal tax credit. The EPA label also noted that customers could save almost $7,000 in gas over the course of five years with the C-MAX Energi.

"Ford is giving customers the power of choice for leading fuel economy regardless of what type of vehicle or powertrain technology they choose," said John Davis, chief engineer of C-MAX Energi. "With $5-per-gallon gasoline, C-MAX Energi customers essentially will pay $1.25 per gallon for the same distance traveled compared with average vehicles estimated to achieve 23 MPG."

The C-MAX Energi, due out this Fall, will also offer many of Ford's features like SYNC with MyFord Touch, MyFord Mobile, ECO Cruise and SmartGauge with EcoGuide.

Source: Ford

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I would buy it
By tayb on 10/11/12, Rating: 0
RE: I would buy it
By FITCamaro on 10/11/12, Rating: 0
RE: I would buy it
By corduroygt on 10/11/2012 4:19:12 PM , Rating: 2
This car is a lot bigger than a Honda Fit. Sits higher (not SUV-high but minivan-high) off the ground and quieter and more refined on the highway as well.

So, no, it's nothing like a Honda Fit.

RE: I would buy it
By Spuke on 10/11/2012 4:42:44 PM , Rating: 3
Isn't it built on the Focus platform?

RE: I would buy it
By corduroygt on 10/11/2012 7:43:02 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, just like the Ford Edge, it's built on the Focus platform, a bigger class of vehicle than the Fit.

RE: I would buy it
By corduroygt on 10/11/2012 7:43:17 PM , Rating: 2
Sorry I meant Escape not Edge.

RE: I would buy it
By thurston2 on 10/12/12, Rating: 0
RE: I would buy it
By Nutzo on 10/12/2012 11:17:59 AM , Rating: 2
Actually I have been looking for a new car this year, and was waiting for the C-Max. It's actaully a nice car with decent room inside.

However, I have 2 major problem with the C-max line.

1. The C-MAX Energi only come with leather seats, no cloth.
Some peopel might see this as a plus, but living in sunny California, I find leather seats too hot during the summer.
Plus, leather usually adds $1000 to the price of the car, and I'd rather see a lower price.

2. No spare tire, in either the Energi or the Hybrid. You only get a can of flat-fix and a compressor.
This is the real deal killer for me. I've had too many flats over the years, including sidewall damage that would not be fixable by a can of flat-fix. They tell you that you can just have your car towed to a tire shop, but good luck finding one open in the middle of the night, or in the middle of a national park.

By Ringold on 10/11/2012 2:53:12 PM , Rating: 2
Did I fail at reading (skimmed the source press release too) or is Ford still not mentioning the electric-only range? I know Toyota kept it's plug-in price low by skimping on electric range, already assuming thats the story here too but wondering how badly.

Still, getting to more sane pricing, thats a plus.

RE: Range?
By Spuke on 10/11/2012 2:58:03 PM , Rating: 2
I read somewhere that it was 20 miles.

By ebakke on 10/11/12, Rating: 0
RE: Yawn
By corduroygt on 10/11/2012 4:20:16 PM , Rating: 2
Good thing this car takes gasoline.
It's just like a Chevy volt, but with a shorter electric only rage.

RE: Yawn
By ebakke on 10/12/2012 11:54:13 AM , Rating: 2
Yeah, I get that. Thanks. But the added cost of the electrical drive system just isn't worth it to me. If I'm going to end up using it as a gasoline-only vehicle anyway because the electric engine won't meet my needs, then I might as well save my money (and my fellow taxpayers' money) and buy a cheap gasoline only vehicle.

For a tech site, this article is sure lacking
By corduroygt on 10/11/2012 4:27:44 PM , Rating: 2
The battery capacity is 7.6 kWh which means it's eligible for 2500 + 2.6*417 = 3540 dollar federal tax credit. Bad news is the price of $30K includes the tax credit.

Given that the volt has a 40 mile range with a 16kWh battery pack, you'd extrapolate that this car has a 20 mile range given it has half the battery capacity and assuming the powertrains are similarly efficient.

By Jedi2155 on 10/12/2012 2:45:57 AM , Rating: 2
Its a 20 mile EV range, but I doubt the 7.6 kWH is the "usable" amount. Just like the Volt only uses ~10.4 kWh of the pack, this one probably has a buffer as well.

Seeing that its rated at around 108 MPGe City (33.7 kWh/108 = ~312 Wh/mile). Round it to something like 340 Wh/mi combined then we're seeing something along the lines of 6.8 kWh usable which is closer to 90% usable. Ford must be a lot more confident on these batteries from Johnsons Control or they may get some serious degradation issues.

For reference the Volt uses only 65% of the pack, so the end user should still see 40 miles of range after 8+ years.

First glance...
By bupkus on 10/11/2012 1:39:54 PM , Rating: 2
delivered a desire to step on it like a bug.

Nice look, but...
By AMDftw on 10/11/12, Rating: -1
RE: Nice look, but...
By Reclaimer77 on 10/11/2012 1:01:11 PM , Rating: 2
We all know American cars are cheaply made and feel like a snap-tight plastic model.

We do?

While this was certainly true a decade or so ago, hell I would make similar statements myself, I'm not sure it's accurate to use this as a blanket statement anymore.

Look very "Euro" with good looking lines.

If by "euro" you mean tiny wedge-shaped hatchback, then yup, they certainly nailed the look :)

RE: Nice look, but...
By Reclaimer77 on 10/11/2012 2:26:29 PM , Rating: 2
hmmm rated down DEFENDING domestic cars...that's a new one :P

RE: Nice look, but...
By Spuke on 10/11/2012 2:59:03 PM , Rating: 3

Ford beats all EU automakers except MB.

RE: Nice look, but...
By martin5000 on 10/11/2012 3:18:47 PM , Rating: 1
Ford beats all EU automakers except MB.

...And Porche. The 3 worst are American. I think your interpretation was a little optimistic.

RE: Nice look, but...
By Spuke on 10/11/2012 4:22:34 PM , Rating: 2
I don't include Porsche because they're my fav automaker. They can do no wrong. :)

RE: Nice look, but...
By Spuke on 10/11/2012 4:23:26 PM , Rating: 2
Oh and the FOUR worst are American.

RE: Nice look, but...
By Ringold on 10/11/2012 6:39:30 PM , Rating: 2
But all the same owner.

Only clear takeaway is that there's no hard and fast distinction in quality between "foreign" and "domestic." Gotta go company by company.

RE: Nice look, but...
By Spuke on 10/12/2012 1:23:21 PM , Rating: 2
I know, I'm just having a little fun. :)

RE: Nice look, but...
By ppardee on 10/11/2012 3:56:04 PM , Rating: 1
That report is really sad... That's saying that, on average, every car off the line from all but two manufacturers has a defect somewhere. Someone seriously needs to look into better quality controls.

If every code deploy I released had a bug in it, I would be out of a job very quickly.

RE: Nice look, but...
By Reclaimer77 on 10/11/2012 4:07:18 PM , Rating: 2
Yes but software has bugs. The vast majority of programs ever made has had bugs at some point.

Automobiles have thousands of parts, just like programs have thousands or even more lines of code.

I think given the complexity of the modern automobile, and the massive demand that they have to satisfy in a fairly short time, they are doing pretty well.

RE: Nice look, but...
By Spuke on 10/11/2012 4:34:00 PM , Rating: 2
That's saying that, on average, every car off the line from all but two manufacturers has a defect somewhere.
EVERY car on that list MAY have a defect. Those numbers are problems per 100 vehicles. I will say that quality across the board is vastly improved. All the automakers continuously get better regardless of the increasing complex. An example is the bottom rung cars used to be in the 200 plus problem range, now they're under 200.

RE: Nice look, but...
By Samus on 10/11/2012 4:11:12 PM , Rating: 2
We all know American cars are cheaply made

In case you didn't get the memo, the 70's are over.

I may be biased, but Ford's build quality has been excellent since the 90's and really took off with the Ford Focus in 2000, now adapoted across their entire vehicle lineup. Any review you read about even the Fiesta will talk about how exceptional the fit and finish is for its class (which includes the likes of the Honda Fit, Nissan Versa, etc)

GM has had excellent build quality for a decade as well, and I think their trucks have a nicer interior than any of the competition. The gaps between panels are almost non-existant.

Chrysler has had an amazing turnaround recently. I wouldn't have bought one 10 years ago, but now they are exceptionally well built and heavily German-engineering oriented (which does require more maintenance, but the pros' outweigh the cons')

I won't go into detail on Toyota or other high-ranking brands, because my Mother's 2002 Camry has been solid, but over time has definately revealed its share of squeeks and rattles, in additional to having gone through two power steering pumps and some other unusual things.

RE: Nice look, but...
By Pirks on 10/12/12, Rating: 0
RE: Nice look, but...
By JediJeb on 10/12/2012 2:17:26 PM , Rating: 2

Just one example of Toyotas breaking, there are many more.

I have driven Fords made since the early 70's ( my first vehicle was a 70 F100 that had 300,000 miles on it when I got it). I haven't had any major problems yet, and other than wearing a few things out now on my 96 F150 which has 230,000 miles on it still no trouble with it either. My 79 Mustang I drove until it had 150,000 miles on it and with the way I treated that thing when I was in college it is a wonder it ever survived that long. Did you know you can get an 8 foot tall cedar tree inside a 79 Mustang coupe :)

RE: Nice look, but...
By Pirks on 10/13/2012 1:04:57 AM , Rating: 2
You may have had good luck with your cars but JD Power wouldn't give Toyota the best reliability award just for fun, you know

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