Today in Cleantech

Ford is taking its shot at the Toyota Prius with its C-Max Hybrid and its C-Max Energi. The plug-in hybrid C-Max Energi is interesting because it’s priced at $32,950 and is eligible for a $3,750 tax credit, pushing its price under 30K. And while everyone is talking about Ford taking on the Toyota Prius, with the plug in C-Max Energi dipping below 30K, I think it could be a bigger headache for the Chevy Volt. The C-Max Energi has a range of 550 miles, and it’s MSRP is well below the $39,145 that the Chevy Volt is priced at though the first 200,000 Volt buyers qualify for a $7500 federal tax credit, which is double the credit for the C-Max Energi. In the end, what’s good about Ford’s foray into the plug-in hybrid market is that it’s an incremental step towards cheaper EVs and more importantly, Ford didn’t take any government bail out money so it’ll be harder to politicize the car the way the Volt has become, in the words of GM’s CEO Dan Akerson, “a political punching bag.”

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Adam Lesser

Analyst Gigaom Research

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