Jones Ford Buckeye Compares 2016 Ford C-MAX Hybrid VS 2016 Toyota Prius Near Avondale, AZ

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2016 Ford C-MAX Hybrid

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2016 Toyota Prius

Safety Comparison

Both the C-MAX Hybrid and the Prius have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding and available rearview cameras.

The Ford C-MAX Hybrid weighs 560 to 630 pounds more than the Toyota Prius. The NHTSA advises that heavier cars are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts. Lighter cars are also affected more by crosswinds.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Ford C-MAX Hybrid is safer than the Toyota Prius:

C-MAX Hybrid


Into Pole


5 Stars

2 Stars

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

Warranty Comparison

There are over 3 times as many Ford dealers as there are Toyota dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the C-MAX Hybrid’s warranty.

Engine Comparison

The C-MAX Hybrid’s standard 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. hybrid produces 67 more horsepower (188 vs. 121) than the Prius’ 1.8 DOHC 4 cyl. hybrid.

As tested in Motor Trend the Ford C-MAX Hybrid is faster than the Toyota Prius:

C-MAX Hybrid


Zero to 60 MPH

8.1 sec

9.7 sec

Quarter Mile

16.2 sec

17.4 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

88.3 MPH

77.6 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

The C-MAX Hybrid has 2.2 gallons more fuel capacity than the Prius (13.5 vs. 11.3 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

The C-MAX Hybrid has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Prius doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the C-MAX Hybrid’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Prius:

C-MAX Hybrid


Front Rotors

10.94 inches

10 inches

Rear Rotors

11 inches

10.2 inches

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the C-MAX Hybrid has larger tires than the Prius (225/50R17 vs. 195/65R15). The C-MAX Hybrid’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Prius (225/50R17 vs. 215/45R17).

The C-MAX Hybrid’s tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Prius’ standard 65 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the C-MAX Hybrid has standard 17-inch wheels. Smaller 15-inch wheels are standard on the Prius.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The C-MAX Hybrid’s drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The Prius doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

Chassis Comparison

The C-MAX Hybrid is 5.1 inches shorter than the Prius, making the C-MAX Hybrid easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space Comparison

Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the C-MAX Hybrid is rated a Large car by the EPA, while the Prius is rated a Mid-size.

The C-MAX Hybrid has 6.6 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Prius (99.7 vs. 93.1).

The C-MAX Hybrid has 1.6 inches more front headroom, .9 inches more front hip room, .9 inches more front shoulder room, 2 inches more rear headroom, 3.1 inches more rear legroom and 2.2 inches more rear shoulder room than the Prius.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the C-MAX Hybrid SEL’s available trunk can be opened just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The Prius doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its trunk, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Ergonomics Comparison

The C-MAX Hybrid offers a remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Prius doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The power windows standard on both the C-MAX Hybrid and the Prius have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the C-MAX Hybrid is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Prius prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

The C-MAX Hybrid’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Prius’ rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open or close them fully.

The C-MAX Hybrid SEL’s standard wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically according to the amount of rainfall on the windshield. The Prius’ manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the C-MAX Hybrid has a standard rear wiper. The Prius Two Eco doesn’t offer a rear wiper.

The C-MAX Hybrid has a standard automatic headlight on/off feature. When the ignition is on, the headlights automatically turn on at dusk and off after dawn. When the ignition turns off, the headlights turn off after a delay timed to allow you to securely get to your front door. The Prius has an automatic headlight on/off feature standard only on the Two Eco/Three/Four.

The C-MAX Hybrid’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The Prius doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.

Both the C-MAX Hybrid and the Prius offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the C-MAX Hybrid has standard rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The Prius doesn’t offer rear air conditioning vents, only heat vents.

The C-MAX Hybrid has a 115-volt a/c outlet, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The Prius doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

Recommendations Comparison

The Ford C-MAX Hybrid has won recognition from these important consumer publications:

C-MAX Hybrid


Consumer Reports® Recommends



Kiplinger’s Awards



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