- - Sunday, September 21, 2014

It’s a plug-in hybrid wagon that combines fuel economy with electric capabilities making this 2014 Ford C-Max Energi a real possibility in the five-passenger wagon market. While the Energi is a bit more expensive than its sibling the regular C-Max, in the world of hybrids, this option stands the test.

Competitors include the 2014 Chevrolet Volt, Toyota Prius Plug-in, Ford Fusion and the Honda Accord Plug-in Hybrid. All are equally matched as well as good green options for driving about town on electric only capabilities.

Unchanged this year other than a few minor tweaks, the 2014 Ford C-Max Energi offers a good electric range for driving. Since most cars in this class come in from 10 to 40 miles on purely electric before taking on the hybrid feature, this Ford keeps up with the competition with not only a larger lithium-ion battery pack, but you can expect 19 miles on electric only power.

The 2014 Ford C-Max Energi comes in only one trim level and that is the SEL with 17-inch alloy wheels, heated and blind-spot mirrors, fog lamps, automatic wipers, rear parking sensors, keyless entry and ignition, power accessories, tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, dual automatic climate control, leather upholstery, auto-dimming rearview mirror, heated front seats with an eight-way power-adjustable driver seat, Sync voice-activated electronics interface, technology connectivity, an eight-inch touchscreen display and the MyFord Touch interface along with six speakers and the necessary audio goodies like satellite radio, iPod and USB audio interface.

You can opt for a panoramic sunroof as a stand-alone addition to the Ford C-Max Energi or there are several upgrade packages. The Premium Audio and Navigation package adds a navigation system with nine speakers and you can add a Hands-Free Technology package complete with a rearview camera and a power liftgate that opens with the simple move of your foot under the bumper. There is also the Parking Technology package that can be added on to these first two packages with front parking sensors and an automatic parallel parking system.

Under the hood, there is a 2.0-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine with 141 horsepower and 129 pound-feet of torque and that is combined with the electric motor, a 7.6 kWh lithium-ion battery pack. Together, these two combined will kick out 188 horsepower through the front wheels with a continuously variable automatic transmission.

When it comes to safety, Ford has included anti-lock disc brakes, traction and stability control, front side, full-length side curtain and driver knee airbags standard as well as a 911 Assist sync with a smartphone devise and the MyKey in which speed and stereo volume can be set for younger drivers so that parents are still in charge. There are also rear parking sensors and optional you can add front parking sensors and a rearview camera.

Inside the 2014 Ford C-Max Energi, it’s a comfortable fit for all the passengers with high-end material used throughout and the dash nobs and dials easy to navigate. Take note, this vehicle offers a very large dashboard therefore offering a one-of-a-kind interior look and feel.

The cargo space is not as impressive as in the competition with just 19.2 cubic-feet. This is due to the battery storage in the rear. If you lower the seats, it will give you 42.8 cubic feet, but it’s not an even floor when the seats are folded since the battery pack sits behind the rear seats and creates an uneven surface.

Even with the smaller space inside, the 2014 Ford C-Max Energi is an easy and fun car to drive without a lot of outside noise in the cabin. For this particular Ford, the plug-in is the real standout since the electric option shines. When driving in electric mode too, you still feel comfortable with plenty of power for getting on the highway and passing other vehicles as needed.

The high-tech conveniences definitely comes as a surprise on a vehicle like this, but luxury is a reality on the 2014 Ford C-Max Energi and one little secret – it might be fun to tell all the passengers, look no hands, as you activate the automated parallel parking assist or the power lift gate mechanism. Indeed, it’s like magic just like the fuel gauge, which will seemingly never move since you never really need it thanks to the electric/battery options that offer a nod to a clean Mother Earth.

Should You Need to Know: The battery pack is large in the 2014 Ford C-Max Energi and you can get 19 miles on the electric power before needing a charge, which only takes two-and-a-half hours to fully recharge using a 240-volt charging station.

Miles Per Gallon: The 2014 Ford C-Max Energi I drove had 43 miles per gallon combined city and highway when using fuel and for electric and gasoline expect 100 MPGe.

Cost: The cost of the 2014 Ford C-Max Energi came in at $37,140.

For more auto tips and information, follow Rita @RitaCook13.

Sign up for Daily Newsletters

Manage Newsletters

Copyright © 2020 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

Please read our comment policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide