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2013 C-Max

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  • Hey... I found a setting in Fuel Economy that selects whether to figure electric use in to the average MPG calculation. Upon change this setting, it dropped my overall average from about 47 MPG to about 39.5 MPGe. The average now shows MPGe on the EMPOWER display, and others, and there is a greater fluctuation on the instant fuel economy calculation when on the battery alone. It's no longer pegged on 120+. This morning I got about 51 MPGe on my way in with 14 miles on a full charged battery at a temp 32 F. it would be interesting to see what others are getting with this setting enabled.
  • rrollntdirrollntdi Posts: 52
    Better MPGe since it's a bit warmer. I tried going to work this morning, 50 degrees F, with the climate control off. I drove 21 miles on the battery and the car calculated 135.5 MPGe. It still had 2 miles left on the battery. Best economy so far :shades: .
  • hofhof Posts: 15
    Well yes, you did only get 23 MPG on gas, but the time on gas included enough battery charging to drive a big part of your 191 electric miles. I have had a C-Max for a month now, and at the beginning of a trip, the car will usually run with the engine on while it heats up. During this time, it is also generally charging the battery. When charging the battery, you will note the arrow pointing up on top of the battery icon. Assuming you have the C-Max hybrid and not the Energi, then all of those 191 miles either came from battery charging during your 23 MPG period or regenerative braking. The bottom line is you did get 43 MPG overall. If you have the Energi, then you'd have to figure how much external electricity you used, and the the MPGe rating would be appropriate.
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 10,876
    Did you recently purchase a car from the Detroit 3 (GM, Ford or Chrysler) after avoiding these domestic vehicles in the past? What made you change your mind? A reporter would like to ask about your experience. If you can help, please contact pr@edmunds.com by Friday April 26th 2013.

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  • rrollntdirrollntdi Posts: 52
    I have bought mostly domestic cars in the past with the exception of a Lexus ES300 in 1999 and a VW Jetta TDI in 2009. They were both great cars, but I found on both that the maintenance and repair costs were higher than I thought reasonable. These will hopefully be lower with the C-Max. It also gets mileage that far exceeds even the TDI.
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,997
    I'm surprised a C-Max "far exceeds" MPG as compared to the TDI. Do you mostly to city driving because on highways a jetta TDI will get in the 40s MPG.
  • rrollntdirrollntdi Posts: 52
    I drive about 23 miles one way to work. Most of the distance the speed limit is 40. If I don't use the automatic AC/Heat Climate Control, I get to work and still have about 4 miles of battery left and can get up to 155 MPGe on the screen. The highest with the TDI, mid Summer with no AC, was about 56 MPG, only one way. On the way home, I get between 47 and 66 MPGe. With the climate control on I still got about 38 to 44 MPGe in March (It's still cold in Detroit in March). My car has about 4,100 miles on it and over 2,400 miles have been driven on the battery power.
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,997
    So getting 56mpg for the 23 miles with the TDI means you used 0.41 gal to go the 23 miles. At $3.5/gal = $1.44 to drive the 23 miles. Depending on the cost of electricity to electrically drive the C-Max those same 23 miles will depend on your electric bill. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nissan_Leaf gives average $0.035/mile as an electricity cost, which would be $0.81 for the electricity for those 23 miles, so you're saving $0.63 driving on battery power for those 23 miles. And let's say you break even on the 23 miles coming back home.

    If you drive to work 225 days/year, that means you saved $141.75 (0.63x225) per year on the commute. Outside of the commute, lets say you drive 5000 per year on vacations with mostly highway driving. In a TDI you could probably average 45-50mpg at 75 mph highway cruising, while in the C-Max only 35-45mpg at 75mph highway cruising, depending on the climate...it really varies. But as an estimate, you'd probably save between $50-150 in gas driving the TDI on long highway trips as compared to the C-Max.

    If you combine the C-Max's $142 savings in the commute vs $75 loss on long highway trips, now we're at about $70 in gas savings with the C-Max Energi over the TDI per year.

    So then the question comes down to the cost of the C-Max Energi vs TDI to see if it's really worth it?

    I own a Gen II Prius and averge in the mid to upper 40s MPG all year round (mid 40s in Ohio winter, upper 40s in spring/summer/fall and on long road trips).

    I think the bottom line will be on driving habits:

    If you live in places were it's really cold 1/2 the year, a diesel is better

    In moderate climates get a regular hybrid, unless you do 90% of your driving at 75mph+ highway speeds, then a TDI would be better.

    If the car only does short trips between charges, then get a full electric or plug-in. Full electric would be best commute/local car if you have another car for the long road trips.
  • once_for_allonce_for_all Posts: 1,640
    I don't see a description of what comes with the car, nor how it is installed. Is the 240 v system an electrician only install, $2k version like the all-electrics? Is the 110 v system a simple extension cord? What is included with the car?

    Thanks, John
  • greenrogergreenroger Posts: 18
    John, The Ford C-Max Energi comes with a 120v external Level 1 power connection, it simply plugs into the wall jack and to J1772 port on the car.
    It is not just an extension cord.
    Think of it as switch that sends power to the vehicle as it requests it, the car has the charger built-in.
    It does have a standard J1772 connector.
    It can be used with all J1772 compatible EV vehicles.

    You can also purchase a 240v Level 2 power "charger" at Homedepot and have it professionally installed and it will cut the charge time in half about $800 and another $200 for installation (depends on your local labor rates).
    Empty to full on 120 = about 7 hrs.
    Empty to full on 240 = about 2.5hrs.
  • rrollntdirrollntdi Posts: 52
    I agree with your assessment on driving a long commute, say over 35 miles one way a day. The other assessment is questionable. You used my absolute best MPG on the TDI and compared it to an average leaf. My average on the TDI was about 40 MPG. Which means it cost about $2.30 (the cost of diesel has hovered around $4 a gallon for a long time in Detroit) each way. The cost of my 110V electricity is about $0.15/Kwh and I don't have a separate meter yet when the cost will drop to $0.08/Kwh. I don't know how much my actual cost of electricity is. I did just get my best economy so far yesterday, 171 MPGe on the way in on the battery and 80 MPGE on the way home, with 8 miles left on the battery and the balance in hybrid mode. I'll have a better total cost once I get the 240V charger installed in June.
  • once_for_allonce_for_all Posts: 1,640
    thanks! Found some of that information on the cmax blog site, which really contains a huge amount of information. A year ago or so, the Leaf charge point stations were looking like a big profit center and hassle. I've got a 240v welder outlet in the shop that would work great for a level 2.

    Home Depot kits off their internet site here in central CA are running about $850 + 9% tax, the Leviton and GE versions are the same.

    My plan at this point is to sink a few thousand into a 2kw grid tied solar system, and see what transpires with the 2014 Cmax and pricing. May be a bargain 2013 showing up.

    John
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,997
    So let's use $2.30 instead of $1.44 for the TDI and let's say you electric cost is 1/2 the average, so $0.40 for the C-Max, so for the 225 days you’re saving about $427 (2.3-.4)225. Let’s say you’re saving another couple of hundred per year in other short trips using the house’s electricity, but again, on any long highway drives you take, the TDI will get the better MPG. To be generous, you might be saving $700/year in gas compared to the TDI, or about $3500 after 5 years. Now it depends on how much more the C-Max Energi costs compared to the TDI.

    As another comparison, with my Prius your commute savings would be about $200/year. That’s with getting 46mpg in the Prius average both ways. On top of that would be the better highway MPG in the Prius for road trips that would probably cancel out the advantage of the plug in electricity savings.
    Again though, it depends on driving style. If you’re using the plug-in C-Max for short trips most of the time you might be better off. Let’s say you’re getting $0.02/mile for 50% of your driving from the plug-in(and that’s generous since the Leaf users average $0.035/mile) and $0.09/mile in hybrid mode (avg 38mpg @$3.5/gal) and you drive 10,000 miles per year, then you’d pay $550 for those 10,000 miles.

    A regular Prius getting $0.07/mile (48mpg @$3.50/gal) would cost you $700 for the same 10,000 miles driven, so you’d save $150 per year with the C-Max Energi, but the C-Max Energi costs about $5000 more than a regular Prius, so that’s a 33 year payback time. Now if you drove 90% of the 10,000 miles using plug-in power, that would cost $270 in the C-Max Energi to drive the 10,000 miles, or $430 less than the Prius. With a $5000 price difference you’re looking at an 11 year payback time. Of course even then you’d have to figure that with the very high quality and proven reliability of the Prius, over 11 years of driving you’d have more repair costs in the Ford C-Max.

    Anyway, a lot of factors to consider. Let us know when you can calculate the increased electricity cost from plugging in your C-Max Energi. What's really needed is a cost per mile comparison versus an MPG comparison.
  • greenrogergreenroger Posts: 18
    Wikipedia has a page that lists MPGe of all Plugin Hybrids and Full electric vehicles.
    The data is from EPA and looks like a great way to compare mileage since they have used the same formula to compare them. It lists costs to drive 25 miles and an average yearly fuel costs.

    They even have the toyota privius listed so you can compare the costs.

    Wikipedia MPGe
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,997
    Nice article, but of course it all really depends on the amount of highway vs city driving, plus the cost of electricity, but it generally makes sense to me. That's why for now I'm sticking with a regular Prius at $1,050 annual cost to drive, especially with plug-ins costing at least a few thousand more with reduced trunk space. Probably the best combination is a full electric as the commute car and a regular Prius as the other car for vacations and other long, highway uses. I can't wait to see the next generation Prius.
  • rrollntdirrollntdi Posts: 52
    Well I finally looked at my paperwork and my PIH C-Max was about $100 more than a comparable Jetta TDI. At a running average of 76 MPGe, it shouldn't take long to make that back. A PIH Prius was $2k to $10K more. A Hybrid Prius was about $3K less, but it's not a PIH is it? I wasn't impressed with the driving dynamics or interior of a Prius either. I love my car's interior, IP, driving dynamics and lack of wind noise at highway speeds. I can go over 1000 miles on 10 gallons of gas which translates to a fill up every 3rd or 4th week. I like not sending my money to the Middle East, to people that may turn on the US at any time. I also like the profits going to a domestic auto company, 'Buy American!'. I think people are looking seriously at the C-Max over the Prius or Jetta and buying it.
  • once_for_allonce_for_all Posts: 1,640
    I respect Ford more over the other US companies, as they chose to deal internally with their issues, rather than go the bankruptcy and bailout route.

    I'm also looking at the CMax, but I'll wait a bit more to let any issues come out. I remember the first gen Volt cable issues, and the first gen Leaf onboard charger weakness. With these cars, they are inventing as they go.

    John
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 10,876
    A reporter is interested in talking with someone who bought a hybrid within the past year. If that describes you, please email PR@edmunds.com no later than Wednesday, July 3, 2013 with the make, model, month of purchase and a few lines about your experience.
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  • I got my 240V charging station and finally got the separate meter installed Monday, so cheaper charges are now an option. Over the weekend I drove my C-Max Energi to Northern Michigan and back and averaged about 46 MPGe over the entire trip with 2 charges. I drove the Expressway at 70 mph and 2 lane roads at about 62 mph for a total of about 520 miles. Today my car has 9460 miles on it and I've only driven about 2600 on gas(about 29%). My car computer has calculated an average of about 82 MPGe on nearly 4000 miles driven before the last tank. The lifetime average was nearing 61 MPGe, but the trip brought it back down to a little less than 60 MPGe. It usually goes up about 0.1 or 0.2 a day in my usual driving. The Summer weather helped and I know the fuel economy won't be as good over the Winter.
  • I've had my C-Max hybrid for a month now, and the active park assist has worked flawlessly... until yesterday. I avoided clipping the front car during active parking assistance last night by asking my passenger to look out the window to tell me if the car was really turning too close to the other vehicle. It was, and I aborted the automation and parallel parked the old fashioned way. Today, I allowed the system to parallel park my car, and while slowly letting the car back up, it turned too quickly and pushed my front fender into the bumper of the car in front of the parking spot. I was moving very slowly at the time, because it looked like the system was misjudging distances... however, the damage was done. There is now a nice indentation on my driver-side front fender. There was nothing unusual about either parking spot, both were plenty large, and the cars and curb were normal. Has anyone else had the system malfunction as to turn too soon and run into other parked cars? I'm not sure how to explain the incident to Ford, unless if continues to malfunction in the same way. Needless to say, I have a front fender to repair due to the cars maneuvering and I'm afraid to let it try to park the car again. Anyone have similar experiences?
  • hofhof Posts: 15
    Fellow owners, I'm curious of your perceptions concerning the effects of the recent software update. I had it done in late August or early September. My first impression was that I was getting about 3 MPG more post-update, perhaps better than that on the highway. In fact, ever since the update, until a recent cold snap the car was reporting 47- 48 average MPG. That being said, on my first two post-update tanks, I hand-calculated my MPG from the gallons pumped, and for two tanks in a row, I was 3-4 MPG below what the computer reported. The computer had been no more than 2 MPG high before, and a couple times was within 1 MPG. Is anyone else noticing a less accurate computer estimate of MPG post-update?

    (I don't want to be all negative. I think the car behaves better in the 60-65 MPH speed range than before. I still love the C-Max, and I have had better than 40 MPG observed and calculated ever since my second tank of gas in April. The car is reporting lifetime MPG of 45.1, and actual MPG is probably around 43. )
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