2013 Ford C-Max: Car Seat Check

2013-ford-c-max-1
Fans of the Ford Escape hybrid may lament the fact that it's no longer available, but Ford's new-for-2013 C-Max easily takes its place. The tall hatchback has seating for five and gets a combined city/highway EPA rating of 47 mpg. Small families should have little problem installing two child seats in the hybrid's second row thanks to visible Latch anchors and a decent amount of space.

For the Car Seat Check, we use a Graco SnugRide 30 rear-facing infant-safety seat, a Britax Roundabout convertible child-safety seat and Graco high-back TurboBooster seat.

2013-ford-c-max-booster
The front seats are adjusted to a comfortable position for a 6-foot driver and a 6-foot-1 passenger. The three child seats are installed in the second row. The booster seat sits behind the driver's seat, and the infant seat and convertible seats are installed behind the passenger seat. We also install the infant seat in the second row's middle seat with the booster and convertible in the outboard seats to see if three car seats will fit. If there's a third row, we install the booster seat and a forward-facing convertible.

Here's how the 2013 Ford C-Max did in Cars.com’s Car Seat Check:

2013-ford-c-max-latch
Latch system:
There are two sets of Latch anchors in the outboard seats. They’re exposed for easy access, but the seat cushions are firm, which made connecting to the Latch anchors difficult. Using thicker, rigid Latch connectors to hook onto the anchors was tougher than with the thinner, hook-like ones.

2013-ford-c-max-buckle
Booster seat:
The backseat is significantly bolstered, which made our booster sit at an angle. The seat also doesn't recline, which often helps with angle-related fit issues. The buckles are on rigid bases and slightly recessed; kids should have no problem buckling up independently.

2013-ford-c-max-rear-conv
Convertible seat:
In rear-facing mode, we had a couple problems: The stiff seat cushions made connecting to the Latch anchors difficult (this seat uses the rigid connectors), and the bolstered seat cushion prevented it from sitting completely flat. Room was also an issue. The front passenger had to move the seat up several inches to accommodate it and was no longer comfortable.

2013-ford-c-max-tether
In forward mode, there was plenty of room for the convertible. Again, the bolstering interfered with the seat’s angle, but removing the head restraint helped settle it. There are three tether anchors midway down the seatback. Instead of traditional metal hooks, these are nylon straps — something we haven't seen before. The strap provided lots of room to connect, so the process was easy.

2013-ford-c-max-infant
Infant-safety seat:
This rear-facing seat didn't take up as much of the front passenger's legroom as the rear-facing convertible, but the passenger still had to move his seat up and his knees were still touching the glove box. Connecting to the Latch anchors was much easier with this seat's thinner, hooklike connectors.

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

Editor's note: For three car seats — infant-safety seat, convertible and booster seats — to fit in a car, our criterion is that a child sitting in the booster seat must be able to reach the seat belt buckle. Parents should also remember that they can use the Latch system or a seat belt to install a car seat.

Related
Research the 2013 Ford C-Max
More Car Seat Checks on Cars.com
More Safety News on Cars.com

Comments 

Nice no wonder that the seat had passed

danwat1234

The EPA will be lowering the MPG estimate from 47MPG to somewhere in the low 40s

Troy S.

Is the C-Max built in Germany?

Ronald Kramer


Poor MPG… Don't Except 47MPG or even close to that.

I also lease a 2010 Prius and Insight both of which have far superior MPG.
Performance (40-51mpg). I thought this would be a Prius Killer? As a
cross over buyer I feel deceived. I want to support US companies and US.
jobs. What was Ford thinking when they published 47 / 47 estimates? I
would have been ok with low 40's but low 28-33 is not even in the ball.
park. Mark my words there will be no fix for this. Ford should offer.
to take the cars back or offer cash compensation to offset the.
mileage claims. The EPA estimates will have to be adjusted to the mid.
30's and sell the cars as is.

My dealer's sales and service department were ok at the beginning of the
complaint process, but the dealership now has turned hostile and
un-professional and suggested I sue Ford.

Ronald Kramer
Yankee Ford Customer
South Portland, Maine

Poor MPG… Don't Except 47MPG or even close to that.

I also lease a 2010 Prius and Insight both of which have far superior MPG.
Performance (40-51mpg). I thought this would be a Prius Killer? As a
cross over buyer I feel deceived. I want to support US companies and US.
jobs. What was Ford thinking when they published 47 / 47 estimates? I
would have been ok with low 40's but low 28-33 is not even in the ball.
park. Mark my words there will be no fix for this. Ford should offer.
to take the cars back or offer cash compensation to offset the.
mileage claims. The EPA estimates will have to be adjusted to the mid.
30's and sell the cars as is.

My dealer's sales and service department were ok at the beginning of the
complaint process, but the dealership now has turned hostile and
un-professional and suggested I sue Ford.

Ronald Kramer
Yankee Ford Customer
South Portland, Maine

Poor MPG… Don't Except 47MPG or even close to that.

I also lease a 2010 Prius and Insight both of which have far superior MPG.
Performance (40-51mpg). I thought this would be a Prius Killer? As a
cross over buyer I feel deceived. I want to support US companies and US.
jobs. What was Ford thinking when they published 47 / 47 estimates? I
would have been ok with low 40's but low 28-33 is not even in the ball.
park. Mark my words there will be no fix for this. Ford should offer.
to take the cars back or offer cash compensation to offset the.
mileage claims. The EPA estimates will have to be adjusted to the mid.
30's and sell the cars as is.

My dealer's sales and service department were ok at the beginning of the
complaint process, but the dealership now has turned hostile and
un-professional and suggested I sue Ford.

Ronald Kramer
Yankee Ford Customer
South Portland, Maine

Poor MPG… Don't Except 47MPG or even close to that.

I also lease a 2010 Prius and Insight both of which have far superior MPG.
Performance (40-51mpg). I thought this would be a Prius Killer? As a
cross over buyer I feel deceived. I want to support US companies and US.
jobs. What was Ford thinking when they published 47 / 47 estimates? I
would have been ok with low 40's but low 28-33 is not even in the ball.
park. Mark my words there will be no fix for this. Ford should offer.
to take the cars back or offer cash compensation to offset the.
mileage claims. The EPA estimates will have to be adjusted to the mid.
30's and sell the cars as is.

My dealer's sales and service department were ok at the beginning of the
complaint process, but the dealership now has turned hostile and
un-professional and suggested I sue Ford.

Ronald Kramer
Yankee Ford Customer
South Portland, Maine

Poor MPG… Don't Except 47MPG or even close to that.

I also lease a 2010 Prius and Insight both of which have far superior MPG.
Performance (40-51mpg). I thought this would be a Prius Killer? As a
cross over buyer I feel deceived. I want to support US companies and US.
jobs. What was Ford thinking when they published 47 / 47 estimates? I
would have been ok with low 40's but low 28-33 is not even in the ball.
park. Mark my words there will be no fix for this. Ford should offer.
to take the cars back or offer cash compensation to offset the.
mileage claims. The EPA estimates will have to be adjusted to the mid.
30's and sell the cars as is.

My dealer's sales and service department were ok at the beginning of the
complaint process, but the dealership now has turned hostile and
un-professional and suggested I sue Ford.

Ronald Kramer
Yankee Ford Customer
South Portland, Maine

Poor MPG… Don't Except 47MPG or even close to that.

I also lease a 2010 Prius and Insight both of which have far superior MPG.
Performance (40-51mpg). I thought this would be a Prius Killer? As a
cross over buyer I feel deceived. I want to support US companies and US.
jobs. What was Ford thinking when they published 47 / 47 estimates? I
would have been ok with low 40's but low 28-33 is not even in the ball.
park. Mark my words there will be no fix for this. Ford should offer.
to take the cars back or offer cash compensation to offset the.
mileage claims. The EPA estimates will have to be adjusted to the mid.
30's and sell the cars as is.

My dealer's sales and service department were ok at the beginning of the
complaint process, but the dealership now has turned hostile and
un-professional and suggested I sue Ford.

Ronald Kramer
Yankee Ford Customer
South Portland, Maine

Poor MPG… Don't Except 47MPG or even close to that.

I also lease a 2010 Prius and Insight both of which have far superior MPG.
Performance (40-51mpg). I thought this would be a Prius Killer? As a
cross over buyer I feel deceived. I want to support US companies and US.
jobs. What was Ford thinking when they published 47 / 47 estimates? I
would have been ok with low 40's but low 28-33 is not even in the ball.
park. Mark my words there will be no fix for this. Ford should offer.
to take the cars back or offer cash compensation to offset the.
mileage claims. The EPA estimates will have to be adjusted to the mid.
30's and sell the cars as is.

My dealer's sales and service department were ok at the beginning of the
complaint process, but the dealership now has turned hostile and
un-professional and suggested I sue Ford.

Ronald Kramer
Yankee Ford Customer
South Portland, Maine

Poor MPG… Don't Except 47MPG or even close to that.

I also lease a 2010 Prius and Insight both of which have far superior MPG.
Performance (40-51mpg). I thought this would be a Prius Killer? As a
cross over buyer I feel deceived. I want to support US companies and US.
jobs. What was Ford thinking when they published 47 / 47 estimates? I
would have been ok with low 40's but low 28-33 is not even in the ball.
park. Mark my words there will be no fix for this. Ford should offer.
to take the cars back or offer cash compensation to offset the.
mileage claims. The EPA estimates will have to be adjusted to the mid.
30's and sell the cars as is.

My dealer's sales and service department were ok at the beginning of the
complaint process, but the dealership now has turned hostile and
un-professional and suggested I sue Ford.

Ronald Kramer
Yankee Ford Customer
South Portland, Maine

Ronald Kramer


Open letter to Ford:

I thought my 2013 C-MAX would be a Prius Killer? NOT! As a returning Ford buyer I feel deceived. I want to support US companies and US jobs. What was Ford thinking when they published 47/ 47/47 estimates? Based on the advertised EPA estimates, I would have been ok with low 40's but 28-33 mpg is not even in the ballpark. This is not an issue about EPA testing standards, but rather an issue about setting false customer expectations in order to promote sales. Ford's "47MPG" marketing campaign tarnished what should have been the roll out of a truly remarkable vehicle, the CMAX. Real world MPG estimates should have been promoted in the mid-30's. No one would have questioned those numbers and the CMAX would have received the accolades it deserves. How these MPG estimates made it through Ford corporate is beyond me! Maybe it was the rush to go to market? I have been accused of not knowing how to drive hybrid. For the record, during the last three years I have leased both a 2010 Prius and 2010 Honda Insight Hybrid, and consider myself an experienced hyper-miler. My mileage in the Prius is 50 plus, the Insight is 40 plus. The C-MAX is a well-built car, with extremely inflated EPA estimates. I respectfully request that this matter be investigated as soon as possible. My efforts to deal with this locally and through Ford customer service have frustrated me to no end. The constant response? "You need to learn to how to drive hybrid type of vehicle ". Is there a difference how I drive Prius Hybrid vs. the CMAX hybrid? I think we all know the answer to that. I need someone at Ford to reach out to me and assist in a proactive manner so we can put this matter to rest.

Ronald Kramer Yankee Ford Customer
South Portland, Maine

A. Pope

We have had our 2013 CMAX for about two months and were using the Graco Turbo Booster for my son. He was NOT able to buckle the seat belt himself due to the width of the booster seat base creating a bad angle with the buckle. It took adult wrangling to get it to latch. We switched it out with his 5-point Britax booster seat and have been much happier since he can buckle himself.

A. Pope

We have had our 2013 CMAX for about two months and were using the Graco Turbo Booster for my son. He was NOT able to buckle the seat belt himself due to the width of the booster seat base creating a bad angle with the buckle. It took adult wrangling to get it to latch. We switched it out with his 5-point Britax booster seat and have been much happier since he can buckle himself.

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