2013 C-Max vs Fusion Hybrid vs BMW X1

pixelwizpixelwiz Member Posts: 5
edited October 2012 in Ford
Hello all,

I need some opinions. I've watched and read just about every review on these vehicles and drove them and I just can't choose.

I currently drive a 2007 BMW 328i convertible, and it's my cream car. But it's almost out of warranty, and I have a dog, and I drive a lot so it doesn’t really work for me anymore.

I’ve actually been thinking about a hybrid for a while, and eagerly waiting for Ford C-Max and 2013 Ford Fusion hybrids to come out. Well they finally have and I test drove both as of yesterday (the C-Max 2 weeks ago).

The Ford C-Max basically has everything I need in a car, but not everything I want. It’s practical, can fit a lot of cargo both behind the rear seats and with sits folded down, I love the hands free lift gate in the back, perfect for putting in beach chairs when I take my dog to the beach and all the hands are full. It’s obviously very economical at 47MPG across the board. It’s actually smaller in person then it looks in pictures, but not too small, it’d fit perfect in my 1 car garage. And my mom would love to get it from me in a few years when her car dies especially with the park-assist option. So that’s all good, BUT it’s kinda ugly looking on the styling and I’m a 32 year old single male. The rear doors don’t open very wide so my dog would actually have a little trouble jumping in. No HID headlights, LED tail lights or larger wheels are offered. No adaptive cruise control, lane departure assist or other technologies available in the Fusion are offered. And it’s basically the same price as the Fusion Hybrid configured the way I want.

The 2013 Fusion Hybrid is an amazing car, whisper quiet even at highway speeds, felt a little faster to me than the C-Max though I can’t back that up with any data, they have exactly the same engine, so it was probably just how it felt. It has a longer and I think a little wider wheel base especially with available 18” wheels, it just felt nice to drive. Also looks very sharp inside and out, felt almost luxurious. Doors open wider so easier for the dog to jump in. More appropriate for a guy like me, BUT the biggest problem is the trunk. The battery takes up a lot of useful space, and I don’t think it can even fit one medium or large size suitcase. I measured all the dimensions and it basically can’t fit much at all because of where the battery goes. It does have a ton of great features from nicer HID headlights and LED tail lights to adaptive cruise control and several other great safety features as well as park-assist. But I really need a trunk I can fit something in.

So as much as I think a hybrid would be perfect for me with as much city driving as I do and I’d save about $150 a month on gas vs a BMW. But, I do love my BMW. The best alternative available for me right now is a BMW X1. Unfortunately configured the way I want it’ll be more like $35-37k, but if I take it as Base model it’d be about the same price as the SEL C-Max or Fusion Hybrid with the add-ons I want. It’s also practical, fun to drive, and looks good. But at the lower price I only get crappy headlights, nothing useful inside, and I have to put premium fuel in it just to get 24 city and 33 highway. So I get the practical and add the fun/sexy but lose economical.

Lastly, I think a perfect car for me would be the 3-series GT that has not been officially announced yet, but there are some spy photos floating around and it’s supposed to be arriving in 2013, though probably towards the end. And just looking at the pricing of other 3-series, it’ll probably start in the high $30s, which would be a little too expensive for me.

So can someone help me choose? Go for practical and efficient and give up sexy? Go for fairly sexy and efficient and suffer with no trunk? Go for practical and sexy but not efficient? Or just pay to get my car serviced, get a new set of tires and risk the future repairs but keep it till something else comes on the market?

Lastly I should probably add that I would also consider the VW Passat Diesel and Jetta Diesel (maybe even wagon) but I'd rather not.


  • wwestwwest Member Posts: 10,706
    edited October 2012
    Both Ford's are FWD and so driving on adverse wintertime roads could get a bit dicey, or worse, most especially since you have been spoiled by the BMW's stellar driving dynamics.

    Regular fuel will have a adverse impact on FE only at or near WOT, when the effective compression ratio and the mechanical CR or equal or almost equal. Only then will the engine ECU have need to "pour more fuel on the fire", enrich the mixture slightly to alleviate detonation.

    Adding LED bulbs to the tail and auxillary lighting and hi/lo HID bulbs/ballast is a rather simple matter. If the BMW already has halogen projectors then retrofitting those to hi/lo projector HID's is a bit harder but very worthwhile.

    Infiniti makes the only RWD hybrid that I am aware of.
  • bobw3bobw3 Member Posts: 2,989
    You said you're a 32 year old single male, so what sort of women are you looking to attract? The BMW might attract women interested in a guy with cash and superficial flash, while something more practical may attract women more interested in a practical/intelligent guy. It sounds like you're more interested in the flash, but if you don't have the cash to support the women interested in the cash and flash, then I'd say to opt for the more practical. I'd say look at a new Jetta TDI or a used BMW X1 loaded the way you like. Or if you really want the women to think that you're smart, practical as well as enviormental friendly get the C-Max. You're 32 years old now, not 25 and not 40, so you're on the border of flash vs practical ;)
  • greendoggreendog Member Posts: 8
    Go with the Fusion Hybrid and pick up a Thule or Yakima topper for when you need the extra space. You'll be stylin,economical and have the extra room when you need it. What kind of mieage did you get testing the FH?
    I look forward to driving soon. Cheers
  • moviefanmoviefan Member Posts: 21
    I too am looking at the 2013 Fusion hybrid but I'm waiting til early next year when the Titanium version comes out. The only thing I'm concerned with is the tighter driver seat area. Because of the wider console, my right knee has no where to go. Not painful, but I would have to get used to it. As far as the trunk, isn't the battery in the middle forming a ledge you can put stuff on as well as rear seat fold-down? I know it's smaller overall but it's nice to have the seat fold down feature.

    I'm not thrilled about the wheel choices though. A 19" option? IMO A 19" wheel is a little big for a passenger car but what do I know.
  • pixelwizpixelwiz Member Posts: 5
    I thought about getting one of those cargo toppers, but it's just not the same as having an easily accessible hatch in the back. So it looks like I'm going with the C-Max, put the deposit on it last Friday. I got mid 30s for MPGs during test drives on both, but I definitely floored them a couple of times to see how they do, on Fuelly so far the reports are about 39mpg. But I've actually watched some videos on youtube that teach how to get more miles out of hybrids, so hopefully that'll help. BTW, if you have a costco card, check out their car buying assistance program. The closest participating Ford dealer to me that does it is 1 hour away, but they by far gave me the best deal than any other dealer in Florida could.
  • pixelwizpixelwiz Member Posts: 5
    Actually you can pretty much get all the options in the SE that will come standard in the Titanium now for about the same price, it's almost better cause you can pick and choose. The only one I'm aware of that doesn't is the chrome trim around windows. Also I didn't see a 19" option for wheels, just 18". The seats do fold down if you need to fit something thin and long, but the way the battery is shaped, you basically can't fit even a single suitcase in there, so you definitely can't take the family to the airport in it. Bottom line it's a very hard choice for me, but it looks like the most logical choice for me is to give up something I want not something I actually need, so I'm giving up the good looks and going with practicality and fuel economy, plus I can get pretty mich every feature offered in the C-Max, Fusion would be a little more but I would get it with stuff like Adaptive Cruise contron not offered in C-Max. Oh, were you talking about your right knee or your left knee? Cause my right felt fine, but the little step where you usually put your left foot felt way too close in Fusion.
  • early74bearly74b Member Posts: 34
    very interesting cross shopping --- I also have two out of three of the vehicles I'm considering a bit similar to yours but I'm downsizing from something I don't quite need the extra large size anymore for (an '09 VW Routan SEL) as the last kid is out of college. My three (perhaps 4 as it would be both the C-Max hybrid and plug-in Energi) are the C-Max, an X3 2.8 (turbo 4) and a Honda Pilot. I've already test driven an X3 at a BMW drive event, and a C-Max hybrid but have yet to drive a Pilot and the Energi is still not yet at Ford dealers. The Pilot for sure would probably get the best deal as they have leftover '12's out there and mfg are discounting their big stuff. Why the diversity, well I'm spoiled with the room the Routan gives me as well as I need seating for 5 good sized people a few times a year and an X3 or C-Max would be tighter than something with 3 rows. Of course, one can always rent something bigger which I might do just to try it, as this would be much cheaper than lugging something bigger than you need the majority of the time. I'd be more concerned with the C-Max being in its first year (although sold in Europe for a few years, w/o the hybrid powertrain); the X1 has also been sold over there in big numbers but not in the U.S. --- lastly, the biggest cost for any of these is depreciation and the word isn't in yet on either the X1 or C-Max on how much value they'll retain over time -- not only is this for resale but effects your insurance (i.e., if it gets totaled and you don't have a new car replacement policy). No question the BMW would be the most expensive, uses higher quality materials and in your case be close to usable space versus the C-Max hybrid (the X1 not the X3 I'm considering which is close in size to what the X5 was) ... but is it space you'll really need, that's my main question as well! Besides this forum I'd also check on the owner forums for the X1 and C-Max as a few people have now had these for a little while which is what I'm also planning to do ... as always, people pick a certain make or model using some practical and not so practical reasons as well as previous experience with a brand, etc.
  • pixelwizpixelwiz Member Posts: 5
    edited October 2012
    I've put down a deposit on the C-Max hybrid. X1 base model just didn't have anything worthwhile in it except a good engine and good handling. To get the package I want would be like another $7k or so. I loved driving the Fusion except my left foot didn't feel comfortable and complete lack of cargo space just doesn't work for me. I think the X3 is an amazing car. It's a little too tall for my dog to easily jump into, and a little too expensive for me new. But they hold their value well, and I really like them. So if you can afford the X3, I'd go with that. I've also thought about the C-max energi, but there are no pictures I could find of the trunk yet, and you do lose about 10 cu ft of space, so I wonder how they did it. For me economically it would be perfect cause I work about 10 miles away and go home often for lunch to walk my dog. So a lot of short commutes. But I can't really wait for them to finally start shipping them cause my car is due for service and it's an expensive one, plus new tires, so I kinda just want to put that towards the new one. I'm not a big fan of the Pilot at all, I had a friend who owned one, and it's basically like driving a big truck. It doesn't actually have as much room as you'd think it does, although that was a few years back so I'm sure they got better. I'd still lean German if you can afford them new, BMW gives you 4 years of included maintenance. Audis look great. You can also get a fully loaded Ford Escape for less than the base BMW. Have you thought about something like a CTS wagon? BTW, if you're not in a hurry, bmw 3-series GT and Wagon should be coming soon, and I think they both look great especially the GT, and will have almost as much cargo space as SUV, yet drive like a sports car. But if you're really considering the Pilot then compare it to the Nissan Pathfinder, the new ones looks pretty good. I think the Infiniti XJ just might be the best 3-row Cross-Over, but they are not cheap or efficient for that matter, and I think Audi A7 is just a perfect all around car, except I can't afford one myself even used.
  • bobw3bobw3 Member Posts: 2,989
    Good choice on the C-Max. The only thing that would concern me is the fact that it's a first year model, but then the quality of Ford mechanicals has been improving.
  • pixelwizpixelwiz Member Posts: 5
    Yes, I'm a little concerned about that, but it's not really it's first year... It's been in Europe for a long time, it's built on the Focus platform which has been proven to be a good platform, and the hybrid drive is the third generation, that's improved over the 2nd generation from 2012 Fusion Hybrid. Sync is also a few generations old now. Plus I'm a software developer and a tech junkie, I will be kinda happy to find things that need improvements in the car and let them know. The prob give it to my mom in 2-3 years and get the next version if I like it. With all the city driving I do hybrid seems like a very logical choice, and really there are only two to pick from and I really don't want a prius.
  • early74bearly74b Member Posts: 34
    Yes, I know the Pilot is big and a bit ponderous but with Honda cylinder deactivation as well as another gear in the trans, the mileage went up for the '12's and '13's. I do like the concept of a 3 wagon or GT but have been spoiled by the higher ride height (which the C-Max also has) so both of those as well as the Caddy wagon (which I have driven, nice ride but cockpit a bit narrow) are out. The Pathfinder did a decent job on getting its mileage up (20/26) but it's almost as big as my minivan (less than 6 inches separate them and I think the Pathfinder is even wider) so that's out too. My next move is to see how ungainly the Pilot is as well as 'test drive' getting it in and out of my garage as my wife would also drive it -- it has 2.5 in. more clearance side to side than my Routan as well as being a foot shorter so if she can't manage it (she has a tough time getting the minivan out even with a backup camera) that might kill that for something smaller -- the X3 is another 6 in. shorter as well as 4 in. more narrow and of course the C-Max is downright tiny compared to that (another 2 in. more narrow and about 10 in. shorter than the X3)
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