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Ford C Max, Prius killer?

Discussion in 'Ford/Lincoln Hybrids and EVs' started by UTBuckeye, Jul 5, 2012.

  1. UTBuckeye

    UTBuckeye Junior Member

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    I stopped by my local Ford dealer and it just so happened that the new 2013 Ford C max hybrid was there for some employee training. I listened to the training session for a little bit and snapped some pictures. I have to admit after listening to the training and seeing the car in person I am a little intrigued. Some things that caught my eye.
    1) The trunk is little bigger than the regular Prius. Definitely not as big as the V.
    2) There are rear A/C vents which is awesome.
    3) According to the training lesson I spyed on there are noise cancelling microphones in the cabin which help to reduce road noise.
    4) Electric only speed is limited to 62 mph.
    5) Leather seats are available
    6) Interior design is much nicer than the V unfortunately. I like how the center arm rest is held up, whereas the Prius arm rest slants down and rests on the seat itself.
    7) Has independent rear suspension

    Those are just a few things that caught my ear. CMAXtrunk.jpg CMAX rear seat.jpg Cmax Dash.jpg Cmax.jpg
     
  2. ProximalSuns

    ProximalSuns Senior Member

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    Keys are:
    1. EV range
    2. MPG in hybrid mode
    3. Price

    Likely Prius has advantages in these.

    All the other stuff you mention is available on Prius Plug In or is inconsequential.

    It's a shame Ford did not go for Fiesta or Focus hybrid getting high 50 mpg to compete with Prius. Plug ins will remain a small market compared to hybrids. Kind of like Chevy doing low volume Volt vs. high volume hybrid Cruze.
     
  3. UTBuckeye

    UTBuckeye Junior Member

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    The C Max that I saw was a hybrid not a plug in so while the options listed above may be available on the plug in Prius they are not available on the V. And the fuel mileage was reported to be 47/44 but we will see what the EPA says wn they test the car. Also list price is between 24 and 32k, so similar to the V.
     
  4. ProximalSuns

    ProximalSuns Senior Member

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    Ford may compare it to a Prius V but market will compare it to a Prius III and say why pay more for less mileage. Ford beat Toyota with the Escape Hybrid vs. Highlander, lower price, more mileage. They discontinued that and come out with Energi that costs more and gets less mileage than a Prius. The Energi will likely follow the Insight into quick oblivion.
     
  5. libmanj

    libmanj Junior Member

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    I was really thinking about buying a Prius this week, and I'm leaning toward holding off until I get to try the C Max hybrid this fall. I'm a current Matrix owner, and that car has been completely reliable, but it's only netting about 26mpg, and I bought it just before gas prices jumped in 2008.

    I've been having a hard time deciding which Prius is right for me. I test drove the Prius C for the first time, and while I was impressed with it, I found it a bit small for me. I'm a tall guy, and I hit my head on the ceiling if I sat up straight unless I leaned the seat back one notch, and that's with the seat all the way down. I think the C is the most attractive Prius on the outside, but on the inside it's considerably cheaper looking than the others (understandable). In the end, it's just a bit too small for me.

    The Prius liftback is probably the most sensible choice for me in the Prius family. I do haul gear around, and I appreciate the true fold flat seats. It's the only Prius that really does fold truly flat. I rented a Prius a month ago for a couple of days to try it out. I didn't get used to the horizontal rear bar across the back window, which I found incredibly distracting. Prius liftback owners, do you ever get used to that? I wonder why Toyota hasn't found an engineering option to do away with that bar. Both of their two newer models have single-pane back windshields. Also, I found the steering to be unpleasantly numb and hard to control, although that's not a dealbreaker. I also found the front driver's seat to be uncomfortable. In general, I find the interior quite attractive, and of course the mileage/size ratio can't be beat. Incidentally, although the Prius C and liftback have the same listed headroom, the front seat must pump down a bit further in the lifback, because I had no problem fitting in that car.

    The Prius V is appreciably bigger, but I distinctly dislike the exterior design. Whereas I would occasionally appreciate the larger cargo space, I don't know if it's worth it for the sacrifice of 8mpg to me.

    So really, the idea of a car right in between the sizes of the liftback and the V would appeal to me. As much as I am not tremendously interested in owning a Ford, the C Max looks like the best design to me. It's a big bigger and taller than the liftback. It's got a single-pane rear window. It appears to have fold flat seats (from the limited number of pictures I've seen). It appears to be a sacrifice of only 4 mpg over the liftback. From pictures, I think it looks reasonably good looking, and much better so than the V. Honestly, it's shaped a lot like a Matrix, which is fine with me.

    So please, Prius fans, I love Toyotas and intended to be a repeat Toyota buyer. But I'm wondering if the C Max Hybrid will indeed (and perhaps should) be a Prius killer. I'd love for you to convince me otherwise.
     
    Silver bullit likes this.
  6. john1701a

    john1701a Prius Guru

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    There won't be as drastic of a performance difference, so Ford has that in their favor.

    Price is likely to be the killer. When you've got Prius plug-in owners like me maintaining monthly summer averages above 100, it's going to be somewhat of a challenge convincing buyers to pay a lot more for capacity that will be difficult to estimate the benefits of. Being affordable is a very big deal.
     
  7. libmanj

    libmanj Junior Member

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    Thanks, UTBuckeye. Did you happen to see if the seats truly fold down flat?
     
  8. jayhawksrule

    jayhawksrule Junior Member

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    First-time poster, I have been reading the forum and enjoying everyone's very informative posts. I was going to post on this very topic so I registered today to join in.

    About 2 months ago we traded in a Honda Pilot for a Hybrid Camry LXE. Loved the Pilot but not the 18 MPG. My wife and I really like the Camry though, fantastic car.

    We are in the market for another car because we have a teenager who is starting to drive. I have test drove both the Prius and the Prius V and we were leaning toward the V, but I had not made up my mind on it. I like that the Camry Hybrid drives so well and has plenty of power when needed. I have even considered getting another Camry Hybrid but we probably need something with more useable cargo space.

    Then I read the announcements about the C-Max hybrid today and I have to say we will seriously consider this car. I believe the mileage rating of 47/44 is a firm rating now. 188 horsepower is more than my current CRV. Ford has pricing options up on the website and a C-Max hybrid (regular hybrid, not plug-in) configured similarly to a Prius V 3 (cloth seats, navigation, bluetooth, apps) is $27,990. v. 28,075 for the V 3 (both prices include destination charges).

    In the V's favor are reliability (but it seems that Ford has improved in this area) and what appears to be more space.

    Still though, I will definitely look at the C-Max before I make a choice. 188 horses and better mileage at the same price is very tempting . . .

    I am very interested in your thoughts, I will update as I work through the decision process.
     
  9. ProximalSuns

    ProximalSuns Senior Member

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    Insight was 43 mpg vs. Prius 50. Energi looks to be 45 mpg vs. 50. People are buying the car mainly to use less gasoline so why buy a Energi when you could by a higher mileage car. That was the marketing lesson of the Insight.
     
  10. john1701a

    john1701a Prius Guru

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    Let's not forget that Prius offered more power, especially for being so much bigger. Then of course, the aspect of performance came from the difference between ASSIST and FULL hybrids. Energi will be a closer match in both regards.
     
  11. UTBuckeye

    UTBuckeye Junior Member

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    The Ford has a 2.0 litre engine and offers 50 hp more than the Prius. I'd be fine with losing 3 mpg for the increase in power. Also the interior is much better than the Prius.
     
  12. UTBuckeye

    UTBuckeye Junior Member

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    The Energi can't be compared to the Insight as it is a plug in. We don't know the official mileage or eMPG for the Energi.
     
  13. ProximalSuns

    ProximalSuns Senior Member

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    The Energi probably is competitive with the Prius V and if you need cargo space and Energi has more that is a plus. The Prius V is an odd vehicle. A clear roof (to cook you like a July 4 hot dog) but no sun roof...weird. No power seats and Prius seats are an issue for many.

    I try to buy American. Bought an Escape Hybrid over a Highlander but time to jump mileage, Ford had gotten out of the market as I got into it so Prius III the only choice.

    So Energi vs. Prius V (which is what Ford targets) is probably a winner for Energi.
     
  14. jayhawksrule

    jayhawksrule Junior Member

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  15. libmanj

    libmanj Junior Member

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    By the way, the list price for the C-Max hybrid base is actually 25,200. It's 25,995 price includes a $795 destination fee.
     
  16. john1701a

    john1701a Prius Guru

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    What does "better" actually refer to? Describe the differences please.
     
  17. UTBuckeye

    UTBuckeye Junior Member

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    Yes the seats fold down flat. They do not however slide forward and recline like the V.
     
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  18. UTBuckeye

    UTBuckeye Junior Member

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    I'm sorry, better is subjective so I will try to explain. The main difference is in materials used. The materials seem to be nicer than the Prius interior, both plastics and cloth. Leather is standard on the SEL, whereas vinyl is standard on upscale V models. Also the rear seat arm rest stays up on its own, it is not held up by the seat like the Prius.
     
  19. john1701a

    john1701a Prius Guru

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    BTW, an interesting aside is the fact that Ford's advertising of C-Max will be helping to promote Prius V.

    Think about how many people that haven't ever noticed there's a wagon model of Prius available.

    People may discover the C model as a result too.
     
  20. schinia

    schinia Member

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    you ever wonder why ford sold so many model T's ? think about it ! i always wondered why FORD never went the way of the rambler or studebaker