Ford launches new hybrid/electric vehicle to compete with Prius, Volt

By Mark Bullion

January 22, 2013 Updated Jan 23, 2013 at 10:59 AM CDT

EUREKA, Ill -- There's a new option here in Central Illinois for those looking to trade in trips to the pump for trips to the charging station.

It's called the C-Max Energi.

While Ford already manufactures hybrids in their fleet of vehicles, dealers say this one specifically competes with cars like the Toyota Prius and Chevy Volt.

Mangold Ford Owner Mike Mangold in Eureka says the C-Max is just one of many exciting new additions to what Ford calls the "Power of Choice."

"We've got engines from high performance Eco-Boost which is high pressure fuel injection and turbo charging, and we have hybrids, and we have plug in hybrids, in both the gas engines and the batteries, and then we have plug-ins only," said Mangold.

"I took one for a test drive and the first thing I did was step on the throttle and see if I had a passing gear, because I've heard so much about these hybrids not having good acceleration," said Michele McCullough, a C-Max Hybrid test driver. "When we're driving on the highway from Peoria to Roanoke to Peoria, you want to have a passing gear on these two lane highways." McCullough says she will be leasing a C-Max Hybrid.

The C-Max retails between $35 and $40,000 dollars and gets around 50-100 miles per gallon depending on your driving habits.

Dealers are expected to take stock of them in the coming months.

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