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Ford and Hyundai Hybrids to Compete with Toyota’s Prius, If You Are in the Market for a Hybrid Check Out Ford’s C-Max Energi & Hyundai’s Ioniq

Toyota has managed to maintain leadership in the global hybrid market for over a decade now, thanks to the best price/performance ratio, with cumulative global sales getting close to the 4 million mark, but it seems that it won’t be able to rest on its laurels for much longer.

Competition Against the “King of Hybrids” Toyota!

Few car makers developing hybrid vehicles that could fight the Prius in the future. As of May 2017, Hyundai & Kia have as many hybrid models as Toyota.

Chart showing Toyota hybrid with biggest market share against Ford and Hyundai

Note: Toyota has majority market share in the hybrid market. In 2008 over 77% and still the leader as of 2014.

Credit: Detroit Free Press

Ford & Hyundai Serious Rivals to Toyota? Some Say Yes

Ford and Hyundai have emerged as the most serious potential rivals to Toyota in the hybrid market, after announcing plans to introduce dedicated hybrids in a couple of years.

2017 Ford C-Max Energi Hybrid

2017 Ford C-Max Energi Hybrid

Image Credit: CarandDriver

2017 Ford C-Max Hybrid Specifications & Features

 SE 4dr Wagon (2.0L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)Titanium 4dr Wagon (2.0L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
Price$24,120$27,120
Combined MPG4040
EPA Mileage Est. (Cty/Hwy)42/38 mpg42/38 mpg
Fuel Tank Capacity13.5 gal.13.5 gal.
Fuel Typeregular unleadedregular unleaded
Range In Miles (Cty/Hwy)567.0 / 513.0 mi.567.0 / 513.0 mi.
Transmissioncontinuously variable speed automaticcontinuously variable speed automatic
Basic Warranty3 yr. / 36000 mi.3 yr. / 36000 mi.
Base Engine Typehybridhybrid
Total Seating55
Cylindersinline 4inline 4
Drive Trainfront wheel drivefront wheel drive
Base Engine Size2.0 L2.0 L
Cam TypeDouble overhead cam (DOHC)Double overhead cam (DOHC)
Cylindersinline 4inline 4
Horsepower188 hp @ 6000 rpm188 hp @ 6000 rpm
Torque129 ft-lbs. @ 4000 rpm129 ft-lbs. @ 4000 rpm
Valve TimingVariableVariable
Valves1616

Pros & Con’s of C-Max Hybrid

ProsCons
Impressive fuel economyBraking distances are longer than average
Stylish interior is finished with high-quality materialsLess cargo space than competitors
Responsive handling and quick accelerationFront-Wheel drive
Elevated driving position offers good forward visibility

Ford’s “No” Gasoline Only Variation Hybrid Coming?

The American automaker intends to launch a gasoline-electric hybrid in late 2018, and it will be exclusively designed as a hybrid, with no gasoline-only variation, unlike other hybrid models Ford has made in the past.

2017 Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid

2017 Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid

Image Credit: AutomobileMag.com

It’s South Korean counterpart, Hyundai, is also set to challenge Toyota, with a dedicated plug-in hybrid on its own, that is expected to go on sale in 2017 or 2018.

Hyundai’s Ioniq with Plugin Ready in Fall 2017

Update (2017) Hyundai’s Ioniq will have a plugin in late 2017. Reviews and Ratings are below.

2017 Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid Specifications & Features

 SEL 4dr Hatchback (1.6L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 6AM)Limited 4dr Hatchback (1.6L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 6AM)
Price$23,950$27,500
Combined MPG5555
EPA Mileage Est. (Cty/Hwy)55 / 54 mpg55 / 54 mpg
Fuel Tank Capacity11.9 gal.11.9 gal.
Fuel Typeregular unleadedregular unleaded
Range In Miles (Cty/Hwy)654.5 / 642.6 mi.654.5 / 642.6 mi.
Transmission6-speed automated manual6-speed automated manual
Basic Warranty5 yr. / 60000 mi.5 yr. / 60000 mi.
Base Engine Typehybridhybrid
Total Seating55
Cylindersinline 4inline 4
Drive Trainfront wheel drivefront wheel drive
Base Engine Size1.6 L1.6 L
Cam TypeDouble overhead cam (DOHC)Double overhead cam (DOHC)
Cylindersinline 4inline 4
Horsepower104 hp @ 5,700 rpm104 hp @ 5,700 rpm
Torque109 lb-ft @ 4,000 rpm109 lb-ft @ 4,000 rpm
Valve TimingVariableVariable
Valves1616

Pros & Con’s of Hyundai Ioniq

ProsCons
The most affordable Ioniq also offers best-in-class hybrid mpgBase trim offers best mpg but no options
Interior is comfortable and materials are eco-friendlyAllows in a bit too much road noise
Nice range of options available for top trim levelsLacks the power necessary to achieve quick, confident highway speeds

According to numerous reports, Ford has built a compact hybrid prototype that currently goes under the codename C240, and could be expanded into a family of vehicles, with a couple of different body styles.

It is supposed to be based on the new C2 compact platform, that will be also used for future Focus, Kuga, Escape, and C-Max models.

Reuters reported that Ford plans to build 120,000 units of the new hybrid model annually, at the company’s assembly plant in Wayne, Michigan.

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Hyundai Ioniq Now Available

Hyundai, for its part, has been testing four different versions of an Elantra GT equipped with the company’s new hybrid powertrain technology. This suggests that Hyundai also plans to offer the new hybrid model in more than one body style.

It will be based on the Blue-Will Concept – the Korean car maker’s first hybrid – that was unveiled at the 2009 Seoul Motor Show, and was powered by a gasoline direct injection 1.6-liter engine, along with a 100-kW electric motor, for a fuel economy of 106 mpg.

Graph showing percentage market share of Hybrid Vehicles from 1999 to 2015.

Hybrid Electric Vehicle Market Share up to year 2015.

Since Toyota has the majority of the “HEV” market since with little competition.

Later Ford & Hyundai Hybrid Models Couldn’t Compete Against Toyota’s Prius

If both Ford and Hyundai want their new hybrids to truly stand a chance against the fourth-generation Prius, which Toyota rolled out in early 2016, they will have to be much better than their previous gasoline-electric models, considering their somewhat mixed performance in the global market.

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Sales of Ford’s C-Max Hybrid fell almost 30% this year, but the hybrid version of the Fusion sedan fared better, with a 24% increase over the first six months of 2016, compared to the same period of last year.

Final Thoughts

Hyundai, on the other hand, has never been a force to be reckoned with in the hybrid vehicle market, with the Sonata as its only hybrid model so far. 

This is something that the South Korean manufacturer is looking to change in the future, as many other car makers are working on development of hybrid car technology.  

In an effort to meet tough fuel economy and emissions standards that are being introduced in many countries across the world, making for a fierce competition in the global hybrid car market.

Jordan Perch
Jordan Perch is an automotive fanatic and “safe driving” specialist. His expertise includes subjects like traffic regulations and green car technologies. He is a writer for DMV.com, which is a collaborative community designed to help ease the stress and annoyance of “dealing with the DMV”.

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