When it comes to fuel economy, more buyers turn onto hybrid automobiles. One of such models is the Ford C-Max Hybrid and its plug-in sibling, the C-Max Energi. The two are dedicated hybrids; they, however, borrow their platform from the Ford Focus hatchback. The competition in this segment is getting stiffer more so from Toyota which has enhanced its Prius lineup of hybrid models that will even include a TRD version for the 2018 model year. Due to this assault, Ford is set to hook the 2018 Ford C-Max Hybrid with some facelifts to improve the models competitiveness. The new upgrades are very minor and one might even fail to notice them. Both the C-Max Hybrid and the C-Max Energi are offered in two trim levels i.e. the base SE and top Titanium trim.
2018 Ford C-Max Hybrid Exterior
Changes on the exterior profile of the new 2018 Ford C-Max are minor. The model’s trapezoid grille has grown bigger while the LED headlights that flank it has also been revised to look slimmer. The new headlights also come with adaptive lighting to help the driver see clearly what lies ahead. The sides also feature minimal changes. Actually, comparing the new model with the old, I can only make out new window angles that make it look like a small minivan and revised accent lines, otherwise, everything else carries over unchanged.
At the rear, the C-Max also has minimal changes but its tailgate has been revamped. It is operated by waving one’s foot under the rear bumper.
Considering its size, the Ford C-Max has a comfortable cabin that accommodates five adult passengers, one more than its main rival, the Prius Prime. All passengers get to enjoy ample legroom and headroom. However, passengers at the rear row of the vehicle seat in a knees-up position because the rear seats are mounted very low. Due to a number of sound insulation and active noise cancellation features, passengers get to enjoy a more serene cabin. The model has 24.5 cubic feet of cargo space.
Like the outgoing model, a dual-zone climate control, a 6-speaker radio/CD player with auxiliary inputs and USB ports, a 4.2-inch Sync display that supports Bluetooth and Smartphone connectivity, rearview camera and a 10-way adjustable driver’s seat will comes as standard features. The Titanium trim adds a 10-way power adjustable front passenger’s seat, an 8.0-inch touch-screen for the Sync3 infotainment system, a 9-speaker premium sound system from Sony, an auto-dimming mirror, leather upholstery as well as a universal garage-door opener.
There is an optional Driver Assist Package for SE trims that features Sync3, power lift-gate and a reverse-sensing system that comes standard on the Titanium trim. The Titanium trim adds rear cross-traffic alert, blind-spot monitoring, Active Park Assist as well as a hands-free lift-gate.
A panoramic moon-roof is optional for both models.
Engine and performance
The 2018 Ford C-Max Hybrid won’t get any major power-train changes; it will still be powered by a 2.0 L, inline-4 engine that combines with two electric motors to churn out 195 hp and 176 lb-ft of torque. Extra power is stored in a small 1.4 kWh battery. The C-Max Energi, on the other hand, comes with a bigger 7.6 kWh battery that enables the model to run for 20 miles on electricity alone. The Energi’s battery is replenished in five hours via a 120-volt charge but there is an option for a 240-volt charger that cuts the time by half. After the battery is depleted, the Energi operates like the regular C-Max Hybrid.
As said earlier, the C-Max is sought for its high fuel economy ratings. Although EPA ratings are not yet out for the 2018 C-Max Hybrid, I expect it to maintain if not improve the current model’s ratings. The C-Max Hybrid is currently EPA rated at 42 mpg on the city, 37 mpg on the highway as well as 40 mpg on combined drives. The C-Max Energi is, on the other hand, EPA rated at 38 mpg on combined drives. The drive-trains are connected to a CVT transmission system.
Price and release date
We do not know the actual release dates of the 2018 Ford C-Max Hybrid as the automaker is yet to release these details to the public. A release date sometimes in the second half of 2017 is likely. In terms of price, the base SE trim will have an MSRP of $24,120 and $27,175 for the Titanium trim.