Californians: With This Deal, You May Want to Buy a Ford C-Max Energi

C-Max Energi Cascade Scenic Drive

2013 Ford C-Max Energi

The Center for Sustainable Energy of the State of California has just $11,064,574 remaining in its rebate fund as of February 9th, 2014.  This amount will only last for a short while longer (see the CVRP Rebates by Month graph).  The Ford C-Max Energi qualifies for a $1500 cash rebate for those leasing or buying an Energi that is registered in California for 36 months after the lease or purchase.  The rebate application is located at their website.  California added funds last year to the program, but there isn’t any guarantee that it will be repeated this year.

Another substantial benefit for buyers of the Ford C-Max Energi in California is the Green Sticker issued by the California Air Resources Board.  The pass, good through January 1, 2019, is available to the first 40,000 applicants.  The California Air Resources Board lists qualifying vehicles besides the Energi.  They won’t last much longer.  As of December 2013, 28,739 had been issued.  About 2,500 are being issued each month currently.  More details are available on the Clean Air Vehicle Decal program.

In addition to California specific incentives, there is still a $4,007 federal tax credit.  If you buy the vehicle, you will need an income tax liability to offset the tax credit.  If you lease an Energi, Ford Credit (or another leasing company) will receive the credit and should pass it on to you through the lease (make sure they do).

There are other incentives that apply to cities throughout California.  These Tesla and  Department of Energy web pages also list incentives that apply to the Ford C-Max Energi.  If you live in the San Joaquin Valley, the Drive Clean program gives C-Max Energi owners an additional $2000 rebate.

Finally, Ford offers 0% for 60 months and a $3000 rebate on the purchase of a new 2013 C-Max Energi until March 31, 2014.  There is also a competitive lease offer of a $1000 rebate from Ford on a purchase or lease if you currently lease a competitive vehicle (or the lease ended within the last 30 days).

In summary, if you live in the San Joaquin Valley and have a lease on a competitive vehicle, you can get $4,007 from the Federal Government, $1500 from the State, $2000 from the San Joaquin Valley, $4000 from Ford and 0% for five years if you buy the vehicle.  In addition, you can get a Green Sticker for the vehicle that will increase its value.  You should also be able to bargain with the dealership and pay pretty close to invoice.  More than $11,000 below invoice on a new Ford C-Max Energi is possible.  Now that is a pretty sweet deal.

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12 thoughts on “Californians: With This Deal, You May Want to Buy a Ford C-Max Energi

  1. Looks like a personal invite to a San Joaquin Valley resident like me. I should be able to get the net price down to $19k + T&L on an Energi. hmmm…

    I didn’t do the charging station before Dec 31…not wanting to put the cart before the horse. Thanks Craig for the post.


  2. Looks like the 2014 models have a $1k rebate or bonus cash. I’ll need to do some more research on the 2014 invoice pricing, I recall the 2013 Energi SEL I looked at a few months ago had and invoice of $29k or so.


  3. base 2014 Energy including destination looks to be $31,524, according to Edmunds. Cash incentive from Ford puts it at $30,524. With all the tax incentives (fed/state/local) it maybe possible to get one for $23k. I’m not quite ready to pull the trigger.

    • If you plan on buying the car and keeping it for some time, you should consider the 0% for 5 years and increased incentive for the 2013s. There isn’t a significant difference between the two years.

      • no more 2013’s are coming in, and the only 2 left at the dealer are the $36k+ MSRP. I suppose I could shop long distance, but I may wait until the fall. If sales stay slow, the incentives might creep up on the 2014’s.

        • I’ve often gone up to 500 miles to find a dealer via the internet that gave a better price or had the features I (or my wife) wanted. Right now, sales are definitely slow. You might get an even better price at the end of 2014, but the HOV lane decal will be gone and the state rebate most likely too (unless they are extended).

  4. well….90% sure I’ll be getting a 2014 Nissan Leaf. Drives great, and $13k incentives to make the final price at $23k out the door. Nissan is kind enough to also offer me 0% financing for 3 years. This is the SV model which has nav, alloys, LED headlights, foglights, cruise, premium sound, and light grey interior.

    The complications of another ICE engine to maintain just didn’t warrant the upgrade to a PHEV. The Leaf will work fine as a “town” car, and the solar on the shop roof will truly make it an energy free deal.

    I was also considering the BMW i3, and the Golf electric, but both of these are a good 1-2 years out.


    • I would think you can get a better price than that on a Leaf. We like our Leaf, but will be turning it in at the end of the two-year lease, most likely.

  5. The price we discussed was $100 over invoice. It seemed ok at the time…but now I will be re-negotiating, with a lease in mind. I’ve read too many posts on battery degradation and range loss, especially in hot places. It has made me leery of keeping the car longer than 3 years. Other issues include the technology leap and a likelihood of plummeting resale.

    The lease negotiations look to be more complicated. I am hoping for a $2500 down, $250/mo (including taxes), 3 year, 12k/year. Off to do some research and math on my numbers. Here, the $7500 federal tax credit is kept by Nissan, but the $2500 state and $3000 SJV rebates get sent to the registered owner. That $5500 keeps the local dealers with limited car inventory and plenty of traffic from potential buyers.

  6. Craig, you are correct, True Car is showing this model Leaf selling for as much as $1800 below invoice. Average price paid is about $650 below invoice.

    Looks like a great lease deal is about $290/mo, 1st payment also $290, + tax. 36 month, 12k/mo.

    • At the end of 2012, my son – living in Martinez CA at the time, had a lease deal on the SL for just over $200 a month on a 36 month lease with nothing down (that took into account the CA rebate). Despite that, he decided not to go ahead. You will get the CA state rebate and Nissan will get the Fed tax credit on a lease. The lease you state seems high to me.

  7. the $2500 CA rebate is worth $69/month over 36 months.

    I’m still bargaining, but so far it has been the dealers walking away from a $300/month deal, not me. Perhaps the 2014 economy is better, and dealers are not as hungry.

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