Ford projects C-MAX Hybrid will deliver 47 mpg city, 44 mpg highway; expected payback of hybrid premium in two years
|2013 Ford C-MAX Hybrid. Click to enlarge.|
Ford projects that its upcoming C-MAX Hybrid (earlier post) will achieve an EPA-rated 47 mpg city (5.0 L/100km) and 44 mpg highway (5.3 L/100km)—higher fuel economy than the Toyota Prius v (44 mpg / 5.3 L/100km city and 40 mpg / 5.9 L/100km highway) and at a $1,300-lower base price. The vehicle can be driven 500-plus miles with total system output of 188 hp (140 kW), compared to the 134 hp (100 kW) from Toyota Prius v and Prius. C-MAX Hybrid will launch this fall.
The C-MAX Hybrid is based on the new Ford C-MAX five-passenger multi-activity vehicle. This third-generation full hybrid (along with its coming plug-in hybrid sibling) leverages Ford’s global C-car platform, powersplit architecture, next-generation driver information features and advanced lithium-ion battery systems. Ford has simultaneously increased hybrid efficiency and performance while reducing cost.
When powered by gasoline, the C-MAX Hybrid uses the all-new 2.0-liter Atkinson-cycle four-cylinder engine. The Li-ion battery pack is recharged when the gasoline engine is in operation. Further, the regenerative braking system recaptures more than 95% of the braking energy that would otherwise be lost. A new Brake Coach feature—as in the Focus Electric—helps drivers optimize their use of the braking system so that driving range can be enhanced through proper braking techniques.
C-MAX Hybrid also offers technologies such as the available hands-free liftgate, optional active park assist and SmartGauge with EcoGuide, along with the ability to deliver higher speeds in electric mode than Toyota Prius v.
Ford expects a payback period of two years for the hybrid technology premium compared with leading small crossovers. This is about half of the four-year period Ford research shows could trigger more mainstream hybrid sales. Further, Ford research finds that the gap in average income between hybrid and conventional vehicle buyers has decreased by half—from about $30,000 to $15,000—in the past few years.
The segment for small hybrids such as the C-MAX Hybrid and Prius accounts for 65% of all hybrid sales. Ford is positioning the C-MAX Hybrid as America’s most affordable hybrid utility vehicle with a base price of $25,995, including destination and delivery. Ford expects about half of C-MAX buyers to be conquest customers trading in competitive models. C-MAX Hybrid is part of Ford’s first dedicated line of hybrid vehicles and currently available for order at select dealerships.
C-MAX Hybrid is being produced at Ford’s Wayne, Mich.-based Michigan Assembly Plant alongside Focus, Focus Electric and Focus ST.