Claire
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Feb 25, 2019 7:21 pm

Seeking advice from current/previous owners- considering FFE

Mon Feb 25, 2019 7:56 pm

Hi everyone!

I have been considering a battery-only EV and like the FFE. I work remotely from my home, so trips are mostly after-work grocery runs or post office @ lunchtime, or restaurant trips to a town 16 miles away; or visiting family within 10 miles. I do not drive every day, probably 3x a week in winter and more in summer.

I live in a fairly remote area with few public charging options but plan to charge at home since I am at home working M-F. I currently own an older rather inefficient gas pickup truck and would probably hang on to it for any longer trips or hauling any large items.

For any FFE owners or past owners... Would you buy one again? Why/why not? I realize every situation is different so neither answer can be right or wrong for everybody. I am just hoping to get alerted to any blind spots I might be missing. What would you look for or be wary of with used ones? How could I get an idea how good/bad the EV service might be at my closest dealer? Any thoughts one way or another about a FFE CPO'd by Ford versus one with just the standard warranty? My initial thought was the EVs lack a lot of the mechanicals a CPO usually covers but I am not sure.

I am looking at a 2017 or low mileage 2016. I do realize range is slightly higher on 2017 and it has DC fast charging capability. I am not sure those are deal breakers for me, but definitely good to have. For me, the less age and more time remaining on warranty are important.

There is one Ford dealer authorized to sell/work on the EVs about 36 miles away from my home.

Thanks for any feedback!

davideos
Posts: 406
Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:58 pm
Location: So Cal

Re: Seeking advice from current/previous owners- considering

Mon Feb 25, 2019 10:57 pm

I'll take a stab at this. If I was in your situation with the things you mentioned, I'd go for it. My commute is 30mi /day, and if it it were freezing outside, that would not impact my range to the point of range anxiety. You are travelling less, so for you too, it is a non-issue. FFE is well equipped, but not perfect for everyone, so you'd have to consider things like adult passengers in the back seat as well as needed cargo space. All non-issues for me, so the car has been great for me...since 2012. One of the very convenient things is refueling. When low, you just plug it in and walk away. When you go to drive the next day, your tank is full.

On the down side of the FFE is the relatively low volume that Ford sells. Because of that, it is still hard to find a competent dealer. Even if you have a dealer you trust, they might just have one guy who knows the car well enough to work on it. Sure, they can get help from the factory...either personal support or TSBs, but they just don't have the experience to turn the car around like a regular ICE car. This type of thing might be true with other EVs, but I don't know. Depreciation also seems a bit steep for these because the market for a lower range electric car isn't that high.

If you were going to look at a used one, check the mileage and check the range on a non-freezing cold day. Use the trip-o-meter to see the consumption of KWhs vs the percentage of battery consumed to get an idea of the remaining capacity of the battery. There might be other ways to tell, but regardless, it might be something you would want to know. I also wouldn't buy a manufacturer buy back. I'm not sure if many of them are out there still, but there were a good number of cars that had issues with "stop-safely-now". Although I think the issue is pretty much fixed now, the problem with the FFE is that any issue manifests itself as a "stop-safely-now" issue without many symptoms to go with it. So if a car has this issue, it might be hard for the dealer of manufacturer to debug.

Although I did have some of these issues, overall, I'm pleased with the car....and yes, I'd do it again.

scottt
Site Moderator
Posts: 315
Joined: Mon Apr 06, 2015 6:00 am

Re: Seeking advice from current/previous owners- considering

Tue Feb 26, 2019 5:12 am

If you find one, feel free to run the details by us first. We're more than happy to let you know if you're getting ripped off or not.
2015 Magnetic FFE (aka Magneto) - Retired
2017 Kona Blue FFE (aka King Kona) - Current

Fat Focus
Posts: 41
Joined: Mon Jun 04, 2018 2:58 pm

Re: Seeking advice from current/previous owners- considering

Tue Feb 26, 2019 1:33 pm

I'm surprised at how much I like mine. I bought it last summer and have about 9k miles on it so far.
2018 Focus Electric
2013 GT350 Supercharged Widebody Convertible
1999 F250 7.3 Crew Cab 6-Speed 4x4
1964 Falcon Convertible 289 4-Speed

Claire
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Feb 25, 2019 7:21 pm

Re: Seeking advice from current/previous owners- considering

Thu Feb 28, 2019 8:17 pm

Thanks for the good info! I have my eye on 2 possible cars right now, a CPO 2017 and a CPO 2016.

I also have to do more confirming on service nearby. I called one nearby Ford dealer to confirm they can service Ford EV, and service person said 'yes we can do oil changes on those...'

Heima
Posts: 23
Joined: Thu Feb 21, 2019 11:46 pm

Re: Seeking advice from current/previous owners- considering

Thu Feb 28, 2019 11:23 pm

My first EV was a 2013 Fiat 500e. I drove that for two years, loved every moment with it, and then recently made a sweet deal on a lightly used 2017 FFE. I am not sorry I bought the FFE. I am hoping we have many years together.

I was finally leaving the Fiat because of the range and lack of DC fast charging. It is a great car, using some fairly high-quality parts from Bosch and Samsung.

When I first purchased the Fiat, I was also considering a 2012 I-Miev, or a 2014 Smart Fortwo ED. To replace the Fiat, I considered a 2014 RAV EV, a 2016 Spark EV, a 2015 Mercedes B250e, a 2014 BMW I3, a 2017 FFE, a 2019 Hyunda Kona Electric, or a 2019 Kia Niro EV. Notice no (cough) Nissan Leaf (cough).

Yes, that is a big price spread. I shopped for over a year. I drove many, and it was quite a difficult decision at times to pick one car, or see what the future would bring. Though there were several great deals that got passed up, my FFE was an incredible deal.

So I believe your heart is set on the FFE, and it is a good choice, but here are some of my concerns, likes and dislikes of the fore mentioned vehicles. (Not that anybody asked for this.) Note that the prices are for the SFBay Area, where everything is expensive.

Fiat 500e $6000-$8000
Good - So much fun to drive. Cute as hell. A "sleeper" car that can put more performance vehicles to shame. High quality powertrain parts. Active liquid cooling battery thermal management. Very nimble. Extremely reliable. Bright colors.
Ok - Range typically 87 miles for 70% freeway and 30% street driving. 6.6kwh charger.
Bad - No DC fast charging. Dealer network is there, but not that much support. Seats only two normal sized adults. Two kids in the back though. Very little technical information available, in case I want to do my own service.

Mitsubishi I-Miev $5000-$7000
Good - Small but spacious. Ugly cool. Third-party diagnostic support through Canion app and many youtube videos. Very simple design. Not a compliance car.
Ok - Depreciates slower than other Mitsubishis. DC fast charging, but....
Bad - Active air-cooling battery thermal management. 3.3kwh charger. Range 65 miles at best. Built to a low price point.

Smart Fortwo ED $4000-6000
Good - Cheap. Nimble. Cute. Kind of cool color schemes.
OK - Can't think of anything.
Bad - Feels cheap. No DC fast charging. 3.3kwh charger. Battery warranty might require a $5000 payout, or maintaining an $80/month rental fee. Range about 70 miles.

Toyota RAV4 EV $12000-18000
Good - Tesla battery and active liquid cooling battery thermal management. 10kwh charger. Rides and drives like a Rav4. Nice IC and center console displays. Good support from Tesla. Plenty of space. Range typically 130 miles.
OK - Can be modified to DC fast charging, but $3000 plus labor.
Bad - Tesla powertrain. Other sore spots, heater, gateway, DCDC converter, touchscreen. Requires a Toyota Platinum Warranty to guarrantee no exhorbitant repairs.

Chevy Spark EV $8000-11000
Good - Sportier than the Fiat 500e. 400 FtLb torque. Nice IC and center console displays. The best active liquid cooling battery thermal management. DC fast charging. Chevy very supportive of the vehicle. Most efficient EV. Range better than 75 miles, 96 fwy miles possible. Bright colors.
OK - Previously, the best new ev price to performance/features value.
Bad - Can feel a little cheap. 3.3kwh charger.

Mercedes B250e $16000-21000
Good - Very luxurious for the size of car. Tesla battery and active liquid cooling battery thermal management. 10 kwh charger. Nice color selection. Nice IC and center console displays. Variable regen. Range about 110 miles.
OK - Can be modified to DC fast charging, but $3000 plus labor.
Bad - Tesla powertrain, though not as bad as the RAV4 EV. Mercedes reliability. Dealers run and hide from the car. Ridiculous warranty stipulation that dessicant bag had to be replaced every year for battery warranty to be honored. In other words, most B250es have no battery warranty.

BMW i3 $16000-18000
Good - With Rex, range is effectively infinite, but requires hack to be usable. DC fast charging. OK IC and nice center console displays. Phenomenal design, construction, and interior. Active vapor cooling battery thermal management. Nice colors and quirky look.
OK - BMW reliablility. Rex made by Kymco, while a reputable company, it really should be made by BMW. Battery only range about 85 miles. 6.6 kwh charger.
Bad - 2 gallon gas tank. Destructive battery heating methodology.

2017 FFE $15000 ;) -$21000
Good - An electric Focus Titanium. DC fast charging. 121 miles range. Nice IC and center console displays. Active liquid cooling battery thermal management. Nice color selection. Beige interior standard.(yes!) Quieter than the Fiat 500e.
OK - Turning radius is kind of large. 6.6kwh charger.
Bad - That damn split battery. Oh well.

Hyundai Kona Electric $36500 (before govt rebates)
Good - 60KWH battery. 260 mile range. Cool IC and center console displays. 100 kwh DC fast charging. Contemporary interior. Multimodes. Nice color selection.
OK - Serious competitor to discount Model 3. 7kwh charger.
Bad - Too few being produced, expect dealer markup. Cramped 2nd row seating.

Kia Niro EV $??? Maybe $38000 (before govt rebates)
Good - 60kwh battery. 240 mile range. Cool IC and center console displays. 100 kwh DC fast charging. Contemporary interior. Multimodes. Nice color selection.
OK - Headroom and legroom in 2nd row. Better than discount Model 3? 7kwh charger.
Bad - Too few being produced, expect dealer markup.

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