2013 Ford C-Max Extended Review
Proving hybrid wagons can be fun to drive.No Comments
The C-Max handles well for a tall hybrid wagon that is meant to be a family-hauler.
If the 2013 Ford Escape strikes your fancy, but you really, really want a hybrid and you're sad that Ford didn't put a hybrid powertrain in the Escape, well, the Blue Oval has just the vehicle for you. Enter the C-Max.
The C-Max is meant to replace the Escape Hybrid, by virtue of also being a compact crossover SUV. The C-Max is more van-like in stature than the redesigned-for-2013 Escape (Europeans would call it a 'people mover'), although it's not a true minivan. Unlike minivans, the C-Max doesn't have sliding doors or seating for seven--it's best thought of as either a short SUV or a tall wagon.
Whatever it is, going (mostly) gas-free is appealing to many people, and families on a budget will be taking a long look at this car--as will potential buyers of the Toyota Prius V.
Ride is acceptable around town and on the freeway, although it's a bit on the sporty side. It's never stiff, though, and the C-Max doesn't annoy during commuting.
Where the C-Max is lacking is in acceleration. One hundred eighty-eight total system horsepower can only do so much, and while the C-Max has enough guts for around-town driving, it needs more power for passing and merging. It would help if the brakes were less squishy and spongy, too. We also weren't thrilled with the engine's unpleasant noises under heavy throttle.
Headroom and legroom are plentiful, and the overall cabin atmosphere is pleasant.
To those hybrid skeptics that think anything green can't be fun to drive, your local Ford dealer will be happy to prove you wrong.
Transmission: Continuously-variable automatic
Drive Wheels: Front-wheel-drive
Fuel Economy: 47 mpg city/47 mpg highway
Base Price: $28,200
As-tested price: $31,210 (includes $795 destination)
Available Features: Bluetooth, USB port, navigation, MyFordTouch infotainment system, power liftgate, keyless entry and starting, rearview camera, spotter mirrors, 17-inch wheels, fog lamps