VTLeaf
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Joined: Thu Mar 19, 2015 2:52 pm
Delivery Date: 03 Apr 2015
Location: Brattleboro VT

Re: Official Ford C-MAX Energi PHEV thread

Wed Jul 26, 2017 7:29 pm

GetOffYourGas wrote:When I picked up my wife's CMax in summer of 2015, Ford offered us $5k off MSRP, plus the $4k tax credit, it came out cheaper than the new MSRP. This is just continuing the trend: 1) start with a high MSRP, and see how many takers will pay it, 2) when sales sag, offer cash rebates/etc, 3) as the model ages, lower the MSRP to reflect the price already given in (2). We saw this with the Focus EV, as well as the Volt. The CMax is just the latest to the party.

IMO, the CMax Energi is highly underrated. 20 miles of AER will work for a lot of people (certainly not all). And despite the compromised trunk, it is still one of the largest plug-ins available. Pushing the MSRP down below $30k is great, but I wonder if it will help sales. They have stalled out at about 600/month it seems. IMHO, Ford should be able to sell 1k-2k/month if they actually tried.



We just bought an off-lease '14 CMax Energi for $15k. Navigation, moonroof, heated leather power seats -- nice car! The miles should cover either me or my wife on a daily basis except for maybe January here in Vermont :)

I'd been tracking the plug-in varieties of Niro and Ioniq and then realized screw it, maybe we'll trade the Energi for an off-lease one of those in a few years. For now, given that we sold our Prius for almost as much as we paid for the Energi, this was a relatively cheap and easy way to double our electric mileage -- even if the Energi isn't terribly efficient with its use of electrons.
Lightly-used off-lease electrics!
'13 Leaf SV
'14 CMax Energi SEL

GetOffYourGas
Posts: 1651
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2011 6:56 pm
Delivery Date: 09 Mar 2012
Location: Syracuse, NY

Re: Official Ford C-MAX Energi PHEV thread

Thu Jul 27, 2017 4:30 am

Congrats on the new ride, I hope you enjoy it!

Staying in EV in winter takes a little work but is possible. My recommendation is to preheat the car while plugged in and then use the heated seats instead of the heater. I know it has an electric heater but it likes to run the engine for heat of you aren't paying attention. I haven't played around with it much to see what triggers it since it is my wife's daily driver and not mine.
~Brian

EV Fleet:
2011 Torqeedo Travel 1003 electric outboard on a 22' sailboat
2012 Leaf SV (traded for Bolt)
2015 C-Max Energi (302A package)
2017 Bolt Premier

GRA
Posts: 7443
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 1:49 pm
Location: East side of San Francisco Bay

Re: Official Ford C-MAX Energi PHEV thread

Mon Nov 13, 2017 7:48 pm

Via IEVS:
Ford C-Max Energi plug-in production over; Hybrid has only months left
https://www.greencarreports.com/news/1113728_ford-c-max-energi-plug-in-production-over-hybrid-has-only-months-left

. . . "Ford C-Max Energi production has ended," Dan Jones, Ford's North America Car Communications Manager, told Green Car Reports.
"We will continue to make C-Max Hybrid [models] at [the] Michigan Assembly Plant until mid-2018," he added.

Sales of the C-Max give part of the reason for the double death sentence. In the first 10 months of this year, Ford sold just 8,331 C-Max Hybrid models—little higher than the 7,181 C-Max Energi plug-in hybrids it sold over the same period. Toyota sold more than 90,000 of its four Prius models by comparison.

Ford will apparently continue for another year or more with the hybrid and Energi versions of the Fusion mid-size sedan, which uses identical hybrid and plug-in hybrid powertrains to the C-Max. Those two sedans sold 49,764 and 8,026 copies of those the conventional and plug-in hybrid models, respectively, in the first 10 months of this year.

The C-Max will reportedly be replaced in 2019 by a new compact vehicle (possibly called the "Model E"). It allegedly will encompass full battery-electric, hybrid, and plug-in hybrid variants, similar to the Hyundai Ioniq launched for the 2017 model year, and possibly a crossover utility model as well.
Guy [I have lots of experience designing/selling off-grid AE systems, some using EVs but don't own one. Local trips are by foot, bike and/or rapid transit].

The 'best' is the enemy of 'good enough'. Copper shot, not Silver bullets.

GetOffYourGas
Posts: 1651
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2011 6:56 pm
Delivery Date: 09 Mar 2012
Location: Syracuse, NY

Re: Official Ford C-MAX Energi PHEV thread

Tue Nov 14, 2017 5:35 am

RIP, CMax. My wife and I still love ours, and we plan to keep it another 8-10 years. But I understand why it wasn't successful in the US market. It's small by today's standards (yet still basically the largest affordable PHEV available, including cargo space).

I really hope that Ford follows through with the Escape Energi. The Energi is a great drive train, which lives on (for now) in the Fusion. They just need to package the battery better, and maybe upgrade it with more than 7.6kWh.
~Brian

EV Fleet:
2011 Torqeedo Travel 1003 electric outboard on a 22' sailboat
2012 Leaf SV (traded for Bolt)
2015 C-Max Energi (302A package)
2017 Bolt Premier

GRA
Posts: 7443
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 1:49 pm
Location: East side of San Francisco Bay

Re: Official Ford C-MAX Energi PHEV thread

Tue Nov 14, 2017 8:00 pm

GetOffYourGas wrote:RIP, CMax. My wife and I still love ours, and we plan to keep it another 8-10 years. But I understand why it wasn't successful in the US market. It's small by today's standards (yet still basically the largest affordable PHEV available, including cargo space).

I really hope that Ford follows through with the Escape Energi. The Energi is a great drive train, which lives on (for now) in the Fusion. They just need to package the battery better, and maybe upgrade it with more than 7.6kWh.

I'm curious as to which of these upgrades would be a higher priority for you, and which do you think would be most important for the mass market? IMO, for the mass market getting the battery out of the cargo compartment would be #1, and keeping the price down would take precedence over boosting the range, especially if the Fed. credit goes away. The way I see it, until the price of PHEVs is roughly comparable with ICEs/HEVs, they're simply non-viable in the U.S. absent subsidies, as long as our gas prices remain where they are.

Besides, I think the max. usable capacity that makes sense from a mass market perspective is about 8.64 kWh (with whatever total capacity above that needed to provide sufficient longevity), i.e. 8 hours of L1 assuming 120V/12A. For 1.44kW and 75% efficiency, that's 1.08kW charge rate into the battery. Depending on the vehicle efficiency, that should provide between 25 and 35 miles AER, covering the routine driving needs of somewhere between 60 and 75% of U.S.drivers. People who want and can afford more AER will pay for it, but until we've got $20k PHEVs with the same space, performance etc. as ICE/HEVs, for mass adoption cost reduction while maintaining the same range is more important than range improvement at a higher price and weight/internal space impact.
Guy [I have lots of experience designing/selling off-grid AE systems, some using EVs but don't own one. Local trips are by foot, bike and/or rapid transit].

The 'best' is the enemy of 'good enough'. Copper shot, not Silver bullets.

GetOffYourGas
Posts: 1651
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2011 6:56 pm
Delivery Date: 09 Mar 2012
Location: Syracuse, NY

Re: Official Ford C-MAX Energi PHEV thread

Wed Nov 15, 2017 6:13 am

GRA wrote:
GetOffYourGas wrote:RIP, CMax. My wife and I still love ours, and we plan to keep it another 8-10 years. But I understand why it wasn't successful in the US market. It's small by today's standards (yet still basically the largest affordable PHEV available, including cargo space).

I really hope that Ford follows through with the Escape Energi. The Energi is a great drive train, which lives on (for now) in the Fusion. They just need to package the battery better, and maybe upgrade it with more than 7.6kWh.

I'm curious as to which of these upgrades would be a higher priority for you, and which do you think would be most important for the mass market? IMO, for the mass market getting the battery out of the cargo compartment would be #1, and keeping the price down would take precedence over boosting the range, especially if the Fed. credit goes away. The way I see it, until the price of PHEVs is roughly comparable with ICEs/HEVs, they're simply non-viable in the U.S. absent subsidies, as long as our gas prices remain where they are.

Besides, I think the max. usable capacity that makes sense from a mass market perspective is about 8.64 kWh (with whatever total capacity above that needed to provide sufficient longevity), i.e. 8 hours of L1 assuming 120V/12A. For 1.44kW and 75% efficiency, that's 1.08kW charge rate into the battery. Depending on the vehicle efficiency, that should provide between 25 and 35 miles AER, covering the routine driving needs of somewhere between 60 and 75% of U.S.drivers. People who want and can afford more AER will pay for it, but until we've got $20k PHEVs with the same space, performance etc. as ICE/HEVs, for mass adoption cost reduction while maintaining the same range is more important than range improvement at a higher price and weight/internal space impact.


Priorities for me and for mass market are two different things.

First off, I was talking about a theoretically pending Escape Energi. For an Escape, a 7.6kWh battery would likely yield less than 15 miles of AER.

For me personally, the ~20miles of range that my CMax provides is nearly ideal. My household has a PHEV and a BEV, which complement each other nicely. The 20 miles of AER is great for my wife's commute. We do local errands together as a family in the BEV. For longer trips (>200 miles), the difference between 20 and 40 miles AER is small in terms of total gasoline used for the trip. So the answer to your question of my priority - I would prefer better packaging to more range.

For the mass market, I'm not so sure. Most people have much longer commutes than my wife or I do (both of us commute less than 5 miles round trip). It will take a while for people to get their heads around the utility of a PHEV. When they do, they would ideally buy one with an AER to handle their daily commuting/errand needs. What that is will vary greatly.

Again, my original comment was aimed at a future Escape Energi. I think a lot of people have been turned off from the CMax Energi (compared to the hybrid) because of the compromised trunk space. It is a small trunk for a crossover (although it's one of the biggest available in a PHEV, it's small compared to the rest of the market). I can see the same thing playing out with the Escape. With a small SUV form factor, people have a certain expectation of trunk space. Whether they need it or not, a smaller trunk will mean fewer sales. But if you keep the battery so small that it gets 15 miles of AER, people will wonder why they are paying this extra premium for 15 miles. They'll just buy the gas Escape instead.

I think Ford's Energi system is better than the HSD-Prime, but not quite as good as Voltec. I don't pretend to know the answer. I'm personally glad that we have options, and people can choose for themselves.
~Brian

EV Fleet:
2011 Torqeedo Travel 1003 electric outboard on a 22' sailboat
2012 Leaf SV (traded for Bolt)
2015 C-Max Energi (302A package)
2017 Bolt Premier

GRA
Posts: 7443
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 1:49 pm
Location: East side of San Francisco Bay

Re: Official Ford C-MAX Energi PHEV thread

Wed Nov 15, 2017 8:10 pm

GetOffYourGas wrote:
GRA wrote:
GetOffYourGas wrote:RIP, CMax. My wife and I still love ours, and we plan to keep it another 8-10 years. But I understand why it wasn't successful in the US market. It's small by today's standards (yet still basically the largest affordable PHEV available, including cargo space).

I really hope that Ford follows through with the Escape Energi. The Energi is a great drive train, which lives on (for now) in the Fusion. They just need to package the battery better, and maybe upgrade it with more than 7.6kWh.

I'm curious as to which of these upgrades would be a higher priority for you, and which do you think would be most important for the mass market? IMO, for the mass market getting the battery out of the cargo compartment would be #1, and keeping the price down would take precedence over boosting the range, especially if the Fed. credit goes away. The way I see it, until the price of PHEVs is roughly comparable with ICEs/HEVs, they're simply non-viable in the U.S. absent subsidies, as long as our gas prices remain where they are.

Besides, I think the max. usable capacity that makes sense from a mass market perspective is about 8.64 kWh (with whatever total capacity above that needed to provide sufficient longevity), i.e. 8 hours of L1 assuming 120V/12A. For 1.44kW and 75% efficiency, that's 1.08kW charge rate into the battery. Depending on the vehicle efficiency, that should provide between 25 and 35 miles AER, covering the routine driving needs of somewhere between 60 and 75% of U.S.drivers. People who want and can afford more AER will pay for it, but until we've got $20k PHEVs with the same space, performance etc. as ICE/HEVs, for mass adoption cost reduction while maintaining the same range is more important than range improvement at a higher price and weight/internal space impact.


Priorities for me and for mass market are two different things.

Which is why I asked the question the way I did, as you've already taken the plunge and are much more into the tech than the typical buyer. I wanted to see if your priorities differed from what I believe they are for the mass market customer. From what you say below it appears to me that they don't, although you're more willing to put up with the compromises than they would be.

First off, I was talking about a theoretically pending Escape Energi. For an Escape, a 7.6kWh battery would likely yield less than 15 miles of AER.

For me personally, the ~20miles of range that my CMax provides is nearly ideal. My household has a PHEV and a BEV, which complement each other nicely. The 20 miles of AER is great for my wife's commute. We do local errands together as a family in the BEV. For longer trips (>200 miles), the difference between 20 and 40 miles AER is small in terms of total gasoline used for the trip. So the answer to your question of my priority - I would prefer better packaging to more range.

For the mass market, I'm not so sure. Most people have much longer commutes than my wife or I do (both of us commute less than 5 miles round trip). It will take a while for people to get their heads around the utility of a PHEV. When they do, they would ideally buy one with an AER to handle their daily commuting/errand needs. What that is will vary greatly.

Again, my original comment was aimed at a future Escape Energi. I think a lot of people have been turned off from the CMax Energi (compared to the hybrid) because of the compromised trunk space. It is a small trunk for a crossover (although it's one of the biggest available in a PHEV, it's small compared to the rest of the market). I can see the same thing playing out with the Escape. With a small SUV form factor, people have a certain expectation of trunk space. Whether they need it or not, a smaller trunk will mean fewer sales. But if you keep the battery so small that it gets 15 miles of AER, people will wonder why they are paying this extra premium for 15 miles. They'll just buy the gas Escape instead.

I think Ford's Energi system is better than the HSD-Prime, but not quite as good as Voltec. I don't pretend to know the answer. I'm personally glad that we have options, and people can choose for themselves.

I'm looking forward to the Escape as well, and really hope that Ford chooses cargo volume and price over max. AER (or offers buyers the option, something I'd love to see with a Voltec CUV). There won't be any shortage of more expensive PHEVs for people who can afford them, but I'm all for picking the lowest hanging fruit first, which in this case is a PHEV that the most people can afford without significant pax/cargo limitations compared to the same ICE/HEV, i.e. Golf GTE rather than Fusion/C-Max Energis or Prime, with enough battery/AER to make it worth paying extra for and plugging in.

While there are plenty of BMW and Mercedes PHEVs with 15 miles or less AER selling reasonably well, as they're priced well above mass market I don't think they really apply to this case. As I've said before, I personally think enough battery to provide at least 20 miles AER with good longevity would be a good minimum, as that will cover the routine needs of half of the driving population. Every additional mile above that covers a smaller and smaller percentage of extra population, so providing a variety of choices which trade off cost/space versus AER is necessary. 8.64 kWh usable (10-13kWh total, depending on longevity requirements) will guarantee at least 20 miles AER in anything short of a big pickup with off-road tires. After all, 3 miles/kWh x 8.64 = 25.92 miles, and 4 x 8.64 = 34.56 miles.

More efficient vehicles can go with a smaller battery and save money/space, or if the difference isn't significant the bigger battery will cover more of the population. But according to every poll that's come out, the main impediment that keeps most people from considering PEVs is price, so IMO we have to make that the top priority, regardless of whatever else is offered.

By the time 2nd gen. PHEVs like the Escape are coming due for replacement by 3rd gen. models, say 2025, BEV prices are forecast to (and hopefully will) be down enough, and infrastructure complete enough, to make them cost and operationally competitive with ICEs, and we won't need another generation of transitional ZEV tech like PHEVs.
Guy [I have lots of experience designing/selling off-grid AE systems, some using EVs but don't own one. Local trips are by foot, bike and/or rapid transit].

The 'best' is the enemy of 'good enough'. Copper shot, not Silver bullets.

GetOffYourGas
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Re: Official Ford C-MAX Energi PHEV thread

Thu Nov 16, 2017 5:40 am

You have given a good, thoughtful, rational analysis. It is almost too rational, though. More so than the average car buyer. I have heard people claim that they would have purchased a PHEV, but with only 20 miles of range it couldn't do their commute so instead they buy a HEV. In other words, instead of 20 gas-free miles every day, they choose to get 0. It doesn't make any sense.

In talking to people, there seems to be a disconnect between what people want (and believe they "need"), and what could actually be a huge improvement. In other words - I've seen your signature line play out enough times to make me a bit of a cynic myself. People constantly let perfect be the enemy of good enough.
~Brian

EV Fleet:
2011 Torqeedo Travel 1003 electric outboard on a 22' sailboat
2012 Leaf SV (traded for Bolt)
2015 C-Max Energi (302A package)
2017 Bolt Premier

Reddy
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Re: Official Ford C-MAX Energi PHEV thread

Thu Nov 16, 2017 5:05 pm

^^^^Some of the best discussion I've seen here. I would push the "optimum" battery size for the general public up just a bit. I think we can assume closer to 12 hrs, maybe even 14 hrs of L1 charging, so maybe 12-14 KWh useable battery. Most people sleep 7-8 hrs and take a couple of hours at home for other activities, so the car is probably parked at least 12-14 hours. Sure, people with 2 hr commutes are edge cases, but most commutes are 60 min or less.
Reddy
2011 SL; 9 bar, 46.44 AHr; 40,067 mi; rcv'd Aug 18, 2011
Long: http://www.mynissanleaf.com/viewtopic.p ... al#p226115"
Cold: http://www.mynissanleaf.com/viewtopic.p ... 60#p243033"

GRA
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Re: Official Ford C-MAX Energi PHEV thread

Fri Nov 17, 2017 5:15 pm

GetOffYourGas wrote:You have given a good, thoughtful, rational analysis. It is almost too rational, though. More so than the average car buyer. I have heard people claim that they would have purchased a PHEV, but with only 20 miles of range it couldn't do their commute so instead they buy a HEV. In other words, instead of 20 gas-free miles every day, they choose to get 0. It doesn't make any sense.

In talking to people, there seems to be a disconnect between what people want (and believe they "need"), and what could actually be a huge improvement. In other words - I've seen your signature line play out enough times to make me a bit of a cynic myself. People constantly let perfect be the enemy of good enough.

H'mm, not a single statement that someone's a moron or lazy for even slightly disagreeing with someone else over cost/benefits - where are we going wrong? ;)

I've always figured that reasonably rational buyers who are even considering PHEVs will try to buy one with enough AER to cover their routine daily needs, if they can afford that and it meets their other requirements, but if not an HEV rather than shorter range PHEV may well be the least expensive option, or seem to be. Most of us here care about gas-free miles, but the general public is motivated first and foremost by upfront and monthly costs and not having to spend time learning something new. There's undoubtedly a great deal of education that still needs to be done, but I have my doubts that most people will bother with the kind of detailed analysis that would show a PHEV beating out an HEV (or ICE). IMO it will continue to be word-of-mouth from friends etc. that convinces most people to change, for quite some time yet. But that plus (positive) personal experience tends to provide the most effective conversion for the long term.

Per Reddy's comments, much as AOTBE I'd like to see bigger batteries that could take longer charges, I figure most utilities now have ToU pricing with restricted hours that would preclude lowest-cost charging for more than 8 hours, in some cases well under that (SDG&E's five, IIRR). If someone's fortunate enough to live in an area where that doesn't apply, then sure, go for a bigger battery assuming cost etc. isn't an issue. But, assuming access to L2 rather than L1 charging at home pretty much restricts the potential market to homeowners, and that and/or the bigger battery adds to up front costs and hassle owing to the need to purchase an L2 EVSE and maybe install a circuit, to the point where we're no longer talking about minimum acceptable capability/hassle at lowest cost. We're already asking the public to take the extra minute and plug in daily, and even that will be a step too far for some.
Guy [I have lots of experience designing/selling off-grid AE systems, some using EVs but don't own one. Local trips are by foot, bike and/or rapid transit].

The 'best' is the enemy of 'good enough'. Copper shot, not Silver bullets.

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