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Old 04-22-2014, 10:10 AM   #1
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Ford says C-Max mpg reduction has hurt sales

Filed under: Car Buying, Hybrid, Hatchback, Ford



The Ford C-Max is having a rough time. Sales for the five-door hybrid hatchback were down 39.1 percent in March to 2,295 cars, and sales from January through March were down 42.5 percent to 5,566 units. In an interview with The Detroit News, Ford Americas boss Joe Hinrichs places the blame on lowering the model's fuel economy rating.

"We're definitely seeing consideration on C-Max decline over time. We need to reinvest in the product because it's a great car," said Hinrichs to The Detroit News.

The company was hit with bad publicity over the C-Max when owners in multiple states filed class action lawsuits that alleged the cars weren't able to meet the stated fuel economy. Ford eventually re-rated the model from 47 miles per gallon city, highway and combined to 40 mpg city, 45 mpg highway and 43 mpg combined. To soften the blow of the change, the automaker sent checks to the owners to make up some of the difference. Initially, Ford claimed that demand remained strong for the hybrid. However, the latest sales figures and Hinrichs' statement seem to show the opposite.

Hinrichs also says a replacement for the company's MyFord Touch infotainment system is in the works. He claims that the current system is being held back by software limitations. However, a replacement is at least year away. Ford is rumored to be considering switching from Microsoft to a Blackberry QNX-based infotainment system.Ford says C-Max mpg reduction has hurt sales originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 22 Apr 2014 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.



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Old 04-26-2014, 09:45 PM   #2
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All of Fords mpg claims are inaccurate.
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Old 04-26-2014, 09:52 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blank102 View Post
All of Fords mpg claims are inaccurate.
This is a false statement. It's always possible to meet or exceed them in my personal experience with careful driving techniques, just because you might have difficulty reaching this point doesn't make the claims established by the EPA test loop information.
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Old 04-26-2014, 09:53 PM   #4
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^Yup, I've gotten over and under the claimed MPG's on both of my foci.
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Old 04-27-2014, 10:25 AM   #5
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Ford, I'm sorry most people are just stupid

I own one. I know people who own a Prius. They have the same issues as the CMax, and the way the powersplit works in those cars is identical. When it's winter, the fuel economy drops from those lofty figures due to the heater and heated seats using up power. In the summer, it drops again due to the increased AC use. During the times of the year when you can drive without the climate control on then its easy to exceed those numbers around town. Highway mileage for both vehicles is also similar. Likewise you have to drive a hybrid for a decent distance before you see fuel economy benefits.

You will not get good fuel economy from either car driving on short drive cycles. My wife returns home in the car every day with a full battery because it is less than 2 miles to her job. She averages about 8 miles per day if all she does is drop my daughter to school, go to work, and come home. Our lifetime average over 12k miles is 36.5 mpg. When I picked the car up, the lifetime average was 32 mpg. When I drove the car to work, it never got less than 45 mpg- I drive 40 miles round trip, and that was winter, and mixed driving 3/4 highway.

The biggest difference is that the Toyota use a 1.4L gasoline engine compared to the Ford's 2.0L so just on size alone the Toyota has an advantage. The rest of it depends on what you want from a vehicle. If all you want is fuel sipping bragging rights- get a Prius. If you want a comfortable, quiet ride with lots of rear seat room- get the CMax. The sacrifice you make for fuel sipping bragging rights is a car that makes you push a button to have any sort of acceleration, and definitely slow down for turns like you're in a 70's Heavy Chevy. It's also definitely cheaper feeling on the inside, with much more road noise. You feel like you're in an economy car. That's the Prius. The CMax makes you feel like you're in a Mercedes. It's quiet, the acceleration is there whenever you push the pedal down, and there is plenty of room in the back. You can attack turns without slowing down for most, and it has a more commanding presence in traffic. From my experience, the acceleration is ridiculously good, but unfortunately all these complainers who are upset that their CMax doesn't get 50 mpg all the time in every instance will probably make sure that the car becomes as lethargic as a Prius.

The Prius' 14:1 compression ratio demands premium fuel whereas the CMax's more modest 12.3:1 (these are Atkinson engines not Otto) will allow lower octane. The fuel economy is basically the same for all fuel grades. The acceleration is not the same, which is why I always demand that the wife fill up with premium. It's only $2 per tank, and that lasts 3 weeks.

Finally, driving technique. The Prius forces you to drive like you're afraid of the right pedal. The CMax returns the best fuel economy if you accelerate moderately to quickly up to the speed limit, and then coast on electric the rest of the way. Early braking benefits both vehicles by recharging the batteries around town. I end up moving far ahead of the pack, and then they catch up to me just before the next light in town. Without climate control, it's easy to get 50 mpg or better around town on the weekend shopping or park visiting route.

I hope Ford changes nothing in the spirit of the car. I hope it remains a rocketing hybrid in the face of all those complainers who want everything to be a Prius. What I'd like to see in the CMax is a larger battery. The CMax already weighs 600 lbs more than a Prius, so give us a 2kwh battery instead of a 1.4kwh. If a boost in compression ratio will gain fuel economy, then go ahead and require premium fuel. Honestly, I don't think it makes that much of a difference to most drivers. Acceleration should improve as well. Instead of a proposed taller final drive gear ratio, how about an electrically actuated overdrive that can reduce engine rpms at highway speed. I warn Ford engineers who read this dribble that oil pressure at low rpms should be considered. I have some experience screwing up engines by using ridiculously tall gearing. Finally, just bring the Grand CMax here already. It should have room for a larger battery. The car already weighs enough as it is, so a few more pounds won't matter and will give even more storage room in the rear even with a larger battery. For goodness' sake Ford, definitely consider designing a hybrid and electric platform from the ground up. It only makes sense, and these cars will only be in more demand in the future. Keep the luxurious feel, sound proofing, handling, and acceleration. Let the doldrums of drivers buy those Prius' if that's what they want. I prefer giggling like a pre-schooler when I totally waste some backwards hat teen in a fat muffler rice ride while I'm in a Hybrid listening to The Zombies.
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Last edited by whynotthinkwhynot; 04-27-2014 at 11:35 AM. Reason: Ford, I'm sorry most people are just stupid
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Old 04-27-2014, 02:17 PM   #6
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I can see where people are upset, and not with just Ford and the C-max. But odds are they don't understand the testing methodology, which does try to represent a law abiding average US citizen. Chances are if you don't see the advertised mileage, factors in your control are why.
Yes a company will want to tell you all the best things about the mileage, but it's up to you to know if those conditions are what you drive. For instance, if HWY MPG is rated at 55MPH and you drive 70MPH, don't expect 47MPG. Expect lower. Physics is unforgiving.
IMHO, these types of lawsuits are from ignorant people.


I worked out the math from the Mass. lawsuit --> http://green.autoblog.com/2013/05/17...lawsuit-claim/
Lady was asking for $5,000,000 in damages.

47MPG @ $3.50/gallon = $0.07/mile
15,000 miles/yr * $0.07 = $1,117.02/yr

32MPG @ $3.50/gallon = $0.11/mile
15,000 miles/yr * $0.11 = $1,650.00/yr

$1,650.00 - $1,117.02 = $600/yr

$5,000,000 / $600 = 8,333 C-MAX's sold in Massachusetts in 2 years

Now I can't find sales numbers, and I tried a little but don't feel like spending more time on this, but I kinda doubt there where 8,000 C-MAX's sold in only Mass. in 2013 and the first part of 2014.
A legitimate claim and payout should be made based on actual deviation from the stated average fuel economy, only.
Which means that this lawsuit is people trying to make money. I can in now way support that. I can accept covering differential costs and legal fee's, but no more. And from the wording of the suit, which is called a class action, it sounds to me like all the money, if won, goes to a single person and from there to other victims (is victim really a proper term?). Would seem to me that a intermediary is the name that the money should go to and be distributed from, something like 'Ford C-MAX lower than stated class action fund'.


It just seems to me that Gasoline just needs to end altogether. People continually fixate on it and it's never enough. Just switch everything to electric and let them bitch about kW/mile and kW/hr/mile ... and the fact they can't drive more than 100 miles W/O a recharge (an actually legitimate excuse not to see the mother-in-law).

Too many complainers and not enough problem solvers.
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Old 04-27-2014, 02:41 PM   #7
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Well... on a side note, what we'll see in the future is going to be a combination of hybrid technologies. Right now the EPA is funding research into hydraulic hybrids. This is an inexpensive hybrid form as compared to electric. It is more applicable to stop and go vehicles than vehicles that might maintain speed for an extended period of time. Hybrid electric will charge up while moving and can provide power to maintain some speeds- the lower the better. Hydraulic hybrid is nearly exclusively for acceleration and not maintained speed. What makes it special is that it captures 75% of the vehicle's energy during deceleration as compared to HEV's 30% best. For now, NVH is a major concern because these are loud systems, however it has been adapted to things like garbage trucks and full size delivery trucks with much success. UPS is currently operating 40 hydraulic hybrid delivery trucks for development, and intends on more. Real world figures are in the 30-60% fuel economy increase, and more importantly 40% reduction in fuel emissions because the hybrid system is used for acceleration when most fuel is burned for the least gain. I have read where someone proposed a plug-in electric/hydraulic hybrid. A major benefit of this one would be that you'd nearly never need friction brakes with the combination of hydraulic and electric regen systems. Friction brakes would literally become emergency brakes. This would provide a big boost to electric driveability since most people probably don't realize that AC motors like used in cars don't produce 100% torque at 0 rpm. DC motors do, but DC motors suffer from losses when under a load for long periods of time- and the brushes carry more current than AC motors. I would estimate that using PEV tech already in use with an advanced hydraulic hybrid ranges could be extended 25% in city driving, and maybe 10% over highway because less electric power would be consumed under acceleration. I look forward to this technology improving- as well as new battery advances in the future.

http://www.epa.gov/otaq/technology/r...earch-hhvs.htm
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Old 04-27-2014, 03:17 PM   #8
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Wanna get sick? Hate the consumer driven economy? Wonder why good ideas that help people never make it? ME TOO!! Here's another one to add to the list. The only good thing I can say about it- at least the EPA is doing something with my tax dollars and all those fines that big industry pays.

YouTube Video
ERROR: If you can see this, then YouTube is down or you don't have Flash installed.


This is OLD tech. It was developed and patented for use for passenger and commercial road vehicles under the PNGV program in THE 90'S!!! Where is it today? Probably somewhere in a box beside the Ark of The Covenant.

Cheaper
Efficient
Dramatic cuts to emissions: therefore cancer, respiratory diseases
No use of expensive exotic materials
Could be used to put Americans to work

HELL NO not in these United States!! We'll have none of that shit, especially since the series HHV's were all produced with small DIESEL engines that could be run off veggie oil. There's no hippie communist shit here, and don't you forget that it is a crime of treason to threaten the oil industry. We're doing our best to keep it that way, and shut down those socialist organizations like the EPA who fine big business and take away your jobs. What's a little methyl methacrylate dissolved in your water? Everybody loves heavy metals- that's the cost of refining gasoline! You don't even know what that stuff is, so what's the harm? Here's a flag, be quiet.
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Old 04-27-2014, 09:55 PM   #9
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All of Fords mpg claims are inaccurate.
I get better gas milage then the EPa claim , but of course i do the speed limit and don't drive like most Americans .
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Old 04-27-2014, 11:33 PM   #10
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Quote:
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...words n stuff ...

No expert on hydraulics by any stretch. But just doing some light reading and figuring.
Ask yourself why they used a truck for the test bed and why it's being tested for trucks.
Far as I'm reading, it has to do with how much fluid you'd have to have to produce Torque in the pump to move the vehicle. The pump has to be large enough to not fracture under the weight and drag of the vehicle, the flow has to increase as the vehicle speeds up and the pressure has to remain high enough to allow the vehicle to reach speed.

The pump volume is fixed.
That means Flow Rate determines RPM.
Orifice/line size determines pressure.
Pressure determines Flow Rate.
As pressure vessel empties Flow rate falls.

I find this,
Quote:
For every 1 hp of drive, the equivalent of 1 gpm @ 1500 psi can be produced.

source

Which would mean an equivalent to a 300hp car would need 300gpm Flow rate.
And if you want to lower pressure to get the same result, the pump needs to be larger.
1,500 psi = 1.25 cubic inch displacement/revolution
1,000 psi = 1.88
500 psi = 3.76


I recall reading about an air powered car while back. Kansas State I think it was who was playing with it. Sure there's others too.
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