We were invited to drop 500 words on a website tied to a major player in the auto industry, about our experience at CES 2013.
My Editor: I understand you’re pretty funny as a writer, and… Legal Department (butting in): … well, comedy is something we usually squash a kind of hobby of ours. Well– Well, actually, it’s a little more than just a hobby. Reader’s Digest is considering publishing two of our jokes. Me: Really? Legal Department: Yeah. And perhaps some night we could maybe get together and swap humorous stories for-for fun. Me: Oh, why not? Maybe play a couple of Adele records. That’d be a hoot.
This is the 2013 Ford C-MaxEnergi “MAV (multi-activity vehicle).” This is the plug in hybrid version – there is a “conventional” hybrid as well. The engines are the same; battery output is not. Not to piddle on a couple billion dollars of R&D, engineering and marketing (words like MAV and “Energi” don’t coin themselves, you know), but basically, the car comes in Prius (regular) and Volt flavors. Except better. Here’s why:
Another feature of the C-MAX Energi is called EV mode. This is a button that lets you switch the vehicle between EV Now, Auto EV and EV Later. So you can choose which mode to drive in – electric only, gasoline only, or a combination of gas and electric.
I put a couple miles on this fish, in and around the LV Convention Center.
plug in, rather than cordless. At least you don’t have to rewire your house. You can just plug it in overnight, just like a smartphone. But, you’re never stranded. Unlike a Volt, it’s designed to use the engine like an engine when you want or it needs to.
“is it on?” Hit the start button and nothing mechanical happens.
When Car and Driver tested the electric Rolls, they heard “an occasional hint of dynamo hum, but for the most part, the drivetrain dialogue was overwhelmed by the hiss of tires on pavement and the whoosh of air flowing past the side windows.” Ditto.
At city speeds, the tire hum over the hard concrete of Vegas was a noticeable sound, if only because it had no audio competition. The engine never fired up.