One week ago, ConsumerReports.org published, “Tests show Ford Fusion, C-Max hybrids don’t live up to 47-mpg claims.” This title was misleading because the Ford claim is that the C-Max is 47 mpg City, Highway, and Combined on the EPA test. ConsumerReports.org didn’t repeat the EPA test. What followed were numerous articles in the press from automobile web sites to mainstream sources like Time.com and CNBC.com. Most of these articles did little research and simply regurgitated the false ConsumerReports.org press release title, often misleading the consumer. Today, ConsumerReports.org publishes, “Why do Ford’s new hybrids ace the EPA fuel economy tests?” Hmm. You’d think the two press releases were incompatible. Last week Ford C-Max didn’t live up to the “47-mpg claim” and now this week it’s “Ford’s new hybrids ace the EPA fuel economy tests”. Irresponsible. This is bad reporting. If ConsumerReports.org had combined these two articles, would they have gotten the same coverage in the media? I doubt it.
I first blogged on the lower than expected mpg for the C-Max on November 18th. I’m not defending Ford. I just think there’s been an overabundance of misleading articles that were poorly researched on the subject. Daniel Gray of MPGOMatic has been testing the C-Max Hybrid lately. He’s listed nineteen real-world driving segments with details for the C-Max. He’s also posted a video for the C-Max today. I think we can expect a well researched review of the C-Max Hybrid from Mr. Gray. I look forward to its publication.