2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid

2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid
2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid

Pros

  • Impressive fuel economy
  • Stylish interior is finished with high-quality materials
  • Responsive handling and quick acceleration
  • Elevated driving position offers good forward visibility

Cons

  • Braking distances are longer than average
  • Less cargo space than competitors
Ford C-Max Hybrid years


Edmunds' Expert Review

Overall rating

Describing the 2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid isn't easy. Is it a tall hatchback? A small boxy wagon? A fuel-efficient runabout? The answer is a resounding yes.

For its part, Ford calls this European-born compact a "multi activity vehicle." While that MAV acronym is unlikely to catch on, the way the C-Max Hybrid transcends descriptions is a big part of its appeal. The C-Max is really a utility vehicle like a crossover, yet it's been scaled down into a kind of compact wagon that's big enough for big tasks, yet small and easy-to-manage for around-town driving.

Regardless of what label you put on it, there's a lot to like in the C-Max. Refined ride and handling, for starters, not to mention a comfortable interior done up in high-quality materials. To say nothing of its noteworthy fuel economy numbers of up to 40 mpg combined from the same hybrid powertrain seen in the Ford Fusion Hybrid sedan.

If you're looking for comparable alternatives to the Ford C-Max Hybrid, there's always the perennial favorite Toyota Prius. If you're willing to consider a sedan, make a point of looking at the Ford Fusion Hybrid, Hyundai Sonata Hybrid and the Toyota Camry Hybrid.

Even measured against those likable models, however, the 2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid offers a combination of lively handling, a smooth ride and a comfortable, well-equipped passenger cabin that's hard to beat. No matter what you call it.

Every 2016 C-Ford Max Hybrid comes standard with antilock disc brakes, traction and stability control, front side airbags, full-length side curtain airbags and a driver knee airbag.

Also standard are daytime running lights and a rearview camera. Also standard are a feature called 911 Assist, which when paired to your smartphone can automatically call for emergency services in case of airbag deployment, and MyKey, which allows owners to set certain speed and stereo volume parameters for valets or teen drivers. Rear parking sensors are an option on SE models and are standard on the Titanium trim level.

In Edmunds brake testing, the C-Max Hybrid came to a stop from 60 mph in 134 feet, about 10 feet longer than average in its segment.

In government crash tests, the Ford C-Max Hybrid received four out of five stars for overall protection, with four stars for overall frontal protection and five stars for overall side protection. The C-Max Hybrid received the best possible rating of Good in the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's moderate-overlap front-impact, side-crash and roof strength tests, as well as a Good rating for its seats and head restraints (whiplash protection). The C-Max Hybrid received the second-highest score of Acceptable in the IIHS' small-overlap front-impact test.

2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid configurations

The 2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid is a five-passenger, four-door hatchback/wagon available in two trim levels: SE and the new Titanium. A plug-in hybrid version, the Ford C-Max Energi, is reviewed separately.

The SE model's list of standard equipment includes 17-inch alloy wheels, automatic headlights, variable intermittent wipers, a rear spoiler, keyless entry, dual-zone automatic climate control, cloth seating upholstery, a 10-way power driver seat, a 60/40-split folding rear seat, a leather-wrapped tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, cruise control, a rearview camera, a 110-volt household-style power outlet, the Sync voice command system, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, smartphone app integration (including Pandora internet radio), and a six-speaker sound system with a CD player, an auxiliary audio input jack and a USB interface.

Major options are now grouped into new packages, starting with the SE Driver Assist package which bundles a power liftgate, reverse sensing system (for easier parallel parking), and the new Sync 3 interface with an 8-inch touchscreen. The SE Comfort package adds heated outside mirrors with puddle lamps, leather seating upholstery, a 10-way power-adjustable front passenger seat and heated front seats. A Cold Weather package includes heated outside mirrors, heated front seats and cloth seating upholstery. A panoramic glass roof, keyless entry keypad and a voice-controlled navigation system are available as stand-alone options.

The Titanium model adds foglights, rain-sensing wipers, heated outside mirrors with puddle lamps, chrome exterior trim, rear parking sensors, leather upholstery, a 10-way power-adjustable front passenger seat, heated front seats, push-button starting, remote start, ambient lighting, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, universal garage door opener and a premium Sony audio system with nine speakers and HD radio.

The Titanium Driver Assist package includes front parking sensors, a hands-free power-operated liftgate, a blind-spot monitoring system and automated parallel parking. The panoramic glass roof, keyless entry keypad and voice-controlled navigation system are offered as stand-alone options as well.

Options packages for both trim levels include Cargo Management (a cargo net and a soft, foldable cargo organizer), and Interior Protection (all-weather floor mats and cargo protector).

Under the hood, the 2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid gets a 2.0-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine that’s paired with an electric motor powered by a lithium-ion battery pack. Combined, they send a total of 188 hp to the front wheels through a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT).

In Edmunds performance testing, the C-Max Hybrid went from zero to 60 mph in 8.1 seconds. That's quicker than the Toyota Prius and its 9.8-second 0-60 mph sprint.

The Prius bests the C-Max in the fuel economy department, however. According to EPA figures, you can expect 40 mpg combined (42 city/37 highway) from the C-Max compared to 56 mpg combined for the most fuel-efficient Prius Eco model.

Driving

On the road, the 2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid delivers strong acceleration for a hybrid, with passing power on par with gasoline-only competitors. The gasoline-electric powertrain's ability to run in all-electric mode delivers quiet operation and above-average fuel economy.

Even more appealing is the way the C-Max feels from behind the steering wheel. Ford engineers have managed to create a suspension that balances above-average ride comfort with responsive handling. And though the driving dynamics are neither luxury-car cushy nor sports-car zippy, the C-Max Hybrid manages to split the difference in a way that makes it both more refined and more engaging than a number of hybrids we've driven.

Interior

Inside the cabin, the 2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid boasts a surprisingly quiet interior that's on par with those seen in other highly regarded Ford models, which is to say it gets high marks for both design and quality of materials. Storage is another strength, thanks to the front console, an overhead console and beneath the rear floor.

Front seats are comfortable and supportive, and the elevated, crossover-style driving position offers a more sweeping view compared to most small wagons or hatchbacks. Rear seat passengers don't get shortchanged either, thanks to the interior's abundant head- and legroom.

Controls are well-placed and generally easy to operate, the exception being those for the base SE model's standard audio system with its smallish 4.2-inch display. The new Sync 3 interface that's standard on the Titanium trim level is a definite improvement, with its 8-inch touchscreen that supports smartphone-like swipe and pinch-to-zoom gestures.

In the schlepping department, the C-Max Hybrid offers more cargo room than a typical sedan or hatchback but less than larger wagons and small crossover SUVs. Because the battery pack located beneath the floor of the cargo hold takes up some space, there's only 24.5 cubic feet of cargo capacity behind the rear seats. Folding down those seatbacks opens up 52.6 cubic feet of space.


Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid.

Overall Consumer Rating

Most helpful consumer reviews

CMAX Meets expectations
Linda Schifferle,04/12/2017
First off there are no tax credits available, because it is not a plug in...check out the CMAX Energi....but the first tank of gas lasted to almost 600 miles and accumulated MPGs =41. It is far easier to park with the standard backup camera, and space inside is comfortable in both front & back seat. Cargo space is enough for my traveling gym equipment, musical instruments, & a few filled grocery bags & the retractable cover is handy to conceal contents. Handling the vehicle in driving indicates a quick response to sudden steering changes with stability of holding, reasonable acceleration for merging or lane change or sudden evasive moves to avoid another vehicle. I like the interior lighting around the key entrance, and the turn signal lights on the rearview mirrors gives extra visibility to traffic.
Great Value
bluebird,12/23/2017
To give a little perspective, I'm 5'7", 155 lbs. and coming from a 2010 Toyota Matrix. I've had Toyotas for years mainly because of their superb reliability. I've had 3 Fords in the past and swore I'd never get another one, again, mainly because of their reliability or, more precisely, their lack thereof. However, Toyota no longer makes a Matrix and its CH-R has horrible visibility and acceleration - two qualities very important to me. The Ford C-Max, by contrast, has both excellent visibility and very good acceleration - 8.1 seconds 0-60 mph according to Edmunds. I was leery about buying another Ford because of my concern with reliability, but given some of the other qualities I was looking for in a car I decided to take a chance on the C-Max. For example, it has very good gas mileage. I bought it on 8-17-17. Back then I was getting 52 mpg driving locally (far superior to the EPA estimate of 42) and 38 mpg on the highway. I live in MA and in the cold, e.g. 10-30 degrees F, the mpg has dipped considerably to about 35 locally and 33-36 on the highway depending on how fast you go. On a trip up the Maine turnpike at Christmas I got 34 mpg going 75 mph; on the way back and going 65 mph I got 37 mpg. Basically, when it was warm I was getting over 700 miles per tankful (13.5 gal. tank) with mostly local driving and now that winter has arrived I'm getting about 460 miles per tankful with mostly local driving. As you can see cold weather and high speeds really knock the mpg down. Another quality is its visibility in both front and back unlike several of the Japanese designed cars. As mentioned above, its acceleration is very good as well. With the Matrix I was fearful every time I had to merge onto a highway with oncoming traffic or get through an intersection with oncoming traffic. Those fears have been allayed with the C-Max. Also, the seats are very comfortable. It has adjustable lumbar support for the driver and the seats sit higher than my Matrix did for a better view of the road, but not as high as an SUV. It is by far the most quiet car I've ever owned and it feels very smooth. Steering is responsive. The brakes are fine. Headroom is terrific for anyone over 6 feet tall. In the snow it's fine. Granted, this car does not have awd, but for a fwd vehicle it's fine. I'm sure the weight of the car helps too. It's very heavy. One can feel it just in the weight of the doors. It weighs 3640 lbs versus 2830 for my Matrix. I'm approaching the 6000 mile mark and have had no problems thus far (knock on wood). Long term reliability remains to be seen, but so far so good. As far as negatives go, I wish the ground clearance was higher. I believe it's about 5.5 inches comparable to a VW Golf, Honda Civic, or Subaru Impreza which means I need to be very careful when going over speed bumps. I also wish it had a spare tire. The battery is located where the wheel well is located for most cars leaving no room for a spare. That means that whenever I travel up north, e.g. through the White and Green Mountains of New Hampshire and Vermont respectively, I have to pray I don't get a flat because the chances of driving into a dead cell are good, thereby making it impossible to call roadside assistance or AAA to get towed. If the lack of spare doesn't bother you, I highly recommend the car. As far as price goes, the sticker price on my SE model with the cold weather package was about 25.5K. I got it for 20K. And the Ford dealer gave me what I wanted for my Matrix in trade - Kelly Blue Book value for a car in very good condition. Why Ford doesn't advertise this car is beyond me. So far it's been a real pleasure to drive. (Update: 6/28/19) I'm currently at the 11,500 mile mark and I recently had a flat. I hit a curb and the rear passenger tire blew. Luckily I was in town and able to make it home to my driveway. It was on a Saturday at 5 p.m.; therefore, all the service stations were closed. I called the Ford roadside assistance number and set up an appointment to get towed to a Ford dealer (Acton Ford) two miles away on the following Monday. Thank God I wasn't in the boondocks somewhere. Because the belt was broken they had to replace the whole tire. So, feeling that I dodged a bullet, I asked the owner's son if it was possible to get a full size spare. Doughnuts are only good for about 40-50 miles. He was able to find me an after market rim from tirerack.com and was able to mount a cheap Kelly tire onto the rim. It fits behind the rear seats. I went to Walmart and bought a folding lug wrench and a jack. There's a small compartment next to the battery where they fit perfectly. At least now I have peace of mind. I also renewed my membership with AAA. Ford roadside assistance provides towing for only up to 30 miles and when you call they want you to have a smart phone so they can send you a text to arrange service. At least with AAA you can talk with a live person.
Very happy with purachse
lslblues,10/14/2017
We bought this car simply because it was was one of the very few hybrids you could tow behind an RV. Very happy with purchase. Averaging 40.5 MPH overall. Very comfortable seating. Extremely quiet interior. Good comfort. Very happy with purchase.
Outstanding Surprise
Bobbyd,11/11/2017
I was pleasantly surprised after driving this car how it impressed me. I read the so called critics reviews on how the Prius was the most popular hybrid, but I decided to review this C Max myself. I am slightly over 6 Ft and immediately noticed the huge headroom of the C max that dwarfs the other hybrids. The C max is quiet, smooth ride, comfortable, very roomy and incredible view including a much higher seating position. The REALLY exciting feature is the performance. As everyone knows, the Toyota Prius might get better mileage but at the cost of super slow acceleration. Trying to merge on a freeway with a Prius is downright dangerous! However, I took the C max out and trust me when I say this hybrid is night and day faster. It's actually 4 seconds faster from 0-60 than a Prius and actually faster than any other hybrids in its class. I was sold on the other features already ,but the car like handling and performance really sealed the deal. I just bought the Titanium model with the larger 17 inch wheels. If you are shopping for a Prius, please test the C max like I did. No Prius for this guy!
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Features & Specs

MSRP
$24,120
MPG
42 city / 38 hwy
Seats 5
Continuously variable-speed automatic
Hybrid
188 hp @ 6000 rpm
MSRP
$27,120
MPG
42 city / 38 hwy
Seats 5
Continuously variable-speed automatic
Hybrid
188 hp @ 6000 rpm
See all 2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    Overall4 / 5
    Driver4 / 5
    Passenger4 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    Overall5 / 5
  • Side Barrier Rating
    Overall5 / 5
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front Seat5 / 5
    Back Seat5 / 5
  • Rollover
    Rollover4 / 5
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of Rollover14.3%
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Good
  • Roof Strength Test
    Good
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Good
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Acceptable
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    Good

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More about the 2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid
2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid Overview

The 2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid is offered in the following submodels: C-Max Hybrid Wagon. Available styles include SE 4dr Wagon (2.0L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT), and Titanium 4dr Wagon (2.0L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT).

What do people think of the 2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid?

Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid and all its trim types. Overall, Edmunds users rate the 2017 C-Max Hybrid 4.5 on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2017 C-Max Hybrid.

Edmunds Expert Reviews

Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid and all model years in our database. Our rich content includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2017 C-Max Hybrid featuring deep dives into trim levels and features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.

Our Review Process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.

Which 2017 Ford C-Max Hybrids are available in my area?

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Edmunds has deep data on over 6 million new, used, and certified pre-owned vehicles, including rich, trim-level features and specs information like: MSRP, average price paid, warranty information (basic, drivetrain, and maintenance), features (upholstery, bluetooth, navigation, heated seating, cooled seating, cruise control, parking assistance, keyless ignition, satellite radio, folding rears seats ,run flat tires, wheel type, tire size, wheel tire, sunroof, etc.), vehicle specifications (engine cylinder count, drivetrain, engine power, engine torque, engine displacement, transmission), fuel economy (city, highway, combined, fuel capacity, range), vehicle dimensions (length, width, seating capacity, cargo space), car safety, true cost to own. Edmunds also provides tools to allow shopper to compare vehicles to similar models of their choosing by warranty, interior features, exterior features, specifications, fuel economy, vehicle dimensions, consumer rating, edmunds rating, and color.

Should I lease or buy a 2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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