We Visit C-Max Heaven to Find a Panoramic Sunroof

We had a free day in California when visiting my son in Martinez.  I got out the Edmunds iPhone App and searched for inventory.  A dealership in Fairfield had more than a dozen C-Max vehicles – I found C-Max heaven.  This was far more than in the entire state of Utah.  We left in the afternoon for a visit to Fairfield Ford.

At the dealership, we introduced ourselves to Michael McBroom in sales.  We went outside to check out the C-Max parked in front of the dealership.  As Michael was telling us about the C-Max, another customer arrived at the dealership.  They wanted to see the new C-Max too (we later talked to the wife who said her husband liked it).  By this time, we had seen a C-Max in Walnut Creek but it didn’t have a panoramic sunroof.  According to the Edmunds App, Fairfield Ford had an SEL with the panoramic roof.  We asked Michael to see it. He knew he had seen it recently but couldn’t find it.  It wasn’t there.  It had been sold the previous day.  It was still being prepared for delivery off site and we were told we could go see it.  We didn’t need to go.  As we spoke, a truck delivered more C-Max cars.  There was one with a sunroof.  This definitely was C-Max heaven.

The sunroof on the C-Max is fixed – it doesn’t open.  We already knew this from reading the Ford website.  We had seen pictures of the sunroof but it wasn’t clear how large the opening was.  We went out to check it out.  Protective plastic covered the vehicle.  We were not allowed to drive it, but could examine the sunroof.  It was a disappointment.  The opening was quite small.  It was set back so far that the front of the opening was above the back of my wife’s head when she sat in the driver’s seat.

Panoramic Sunroof

Ford C-Max Panoramic Sunroof Interior. The front of the shade is set back from the driver’s head.

Update: On January 10th, 2013, we were able to take photos of a Ford C-Max Energi with a panoramic sunroof.  My wife enjoyed how much lighter the sunroof made the cabin of the C-Max Energi.  The two pictures below give a better idea of the position of the driver’s head when the seat is moved backward and forward as far as it will move.

C-Max Energi Panoramic Sunroof

Ford C-Max Energi with Panoramic Sunroof – Driver Seat in Backward Position

C-Max Energi Panoramic Sunroof

Ford C-Max Energi with Panoramic Sunroof – Driver Seat in Forward Position

Ford C-Max Energi Panoramic Sunroof

Ford C-Max Energi Panoramic Sunroof From Rear Passenger Seat

While we checked out the sunroof, Michael got a key to test drive another C-Max.  I took a few more pictures.

Rear Seats Down

Ford C-Max with rear seats down. The rear seats lay down to create a very flat cargo area.

Center Console

Ford C-Max center console takes up a lot of space swooping down from the dashboard.

Cargo Area

The C-Max cargo area is above the bottom of the tailgate opening.

We both drove the C-Max this time.  It has plenty of power on the on-ramp to get up to interstate speeds quickly.  It seemed louder than the C-Max we drove in Walnut Creek.  It made me wonder whether the noise-canceling technology that Ford used in the Lincoln luxury brand and is now bringing to the C-Max and Focus sedan is an extra option or just on the SEL.  I’m going to have to check into this later.  It also became clear that we will need to learn how to drive the C-Max to optimize MPG.  The Ford has displays to assist this learning process, but I found it difficult to glance at them while driving.

There was a Honda and Acura dealer nearby.  We visited with the salesman, Jose Ochoa at Steve Hopkins Honda.  The C-Max is a couple inches lower.  My wife likes that SUV clearance on the road.  She also likes her head above drivers in adjacent cars.  I discovered that the head clearance was better for me in the C-Max.  More importantly, my eye level is near the top of the windshield in the Honda CR-V.  In the C-Max, my eye level is placed much closer to the middle of the windshield.  My wife loves the center console in the CR-V because it has a large storage compartment for her purse.  For me, the C-Max has the better fit.  For my wife, the CR-V.

This blog was first published October 1st, 2012.  It was updated with additional photos of the panoramic sunroof on January 19th, 2013.


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We see and drive a C-Max for the first time

I live in Utah.  The C-Max just isn’t in the state yet.  My wife and I are anxious to see them.  We’re visiting family in Martinez and a search of C-Max inventory near Martinez listed many of them nearby.  Today we visited Walnut Creek Ford – a dealer that was EV certified (we even quickly glanced at the new Focus EV).

We had never seen a C-Max before and my wife was excited to check it out too.  This dealer just received two vehicles the day before.  They had a well-equipped SEL with “Blue Candy” exterior.  Opening the door, we noticed that the console was huge.  It swept down from the dashboard to the back of the front seats.  My wife was quite disappointed with the space consumed by the console.  Unlike the large console in the Honda CR-V, there wasn’t a compartment within it large enough to store her purse.  We were impressed with the power as she drove onto the on-ramp of a divided highway near the dealership though.  The salesman knew a lot about the C-Max.  He discussed the features overall and showed how Sync allowed one to change the cabin temperature.

Ford C-MAX Hybrid

2013 Ford C-MAX Hybrid


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