2019 Toyota Prius c vs. 2018 Ford Focus Electric

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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The Prius c has standard Whiplash-Injury Lessening Seats (WIL), which use a specially designed seat to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the WIL system allows the backrest to travel backwards to cushion the occupants and the headrests move forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Focus Electric doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

The Prius c has a standard Pre-Collision System, which uses forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The Focus Electric doesn't offer collision warning or crash mitigation brakes.

The Prius c’s lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane. The Focus Electric doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.

The Prius c’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Focus Electric doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the Prius c and the Focus Electric have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights and rearview cameras.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Toyota Prius c is safer than the Ford Focus Electric:


Prius c





4 Stars

4 Stars

Neck Injury Risk



New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Toyota Prius c is safer than the Ford Focus Electric:


Prius c



Into Pole


5 Stars

5 Stars

Max Damage Depth

15 inches

18 inches

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.


Toyota pays for scheduled maintenance on the Prius c for 2 years and 25000 miles. Toyota will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Ford doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Focus Electric.


A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the Prius c’s reliability 80 points higher than the Focus Electric.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Ford vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota second in reliability, above the industry average. With 38 more problems per 100 vehicles, Ford is ranked 16th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Ford vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Toyota second in reliability. Ford is ranked 18th.

Fuel Economy and Range

The Prius c’s maximum EPA estimated driving range on a full tank of fuel is 456 miles, after which it can be refueled at any gas station in minutes. The Focus Electric’s range is only 115 miles, after which the minimum recharge time is 5 hours and 30 minutes. A full recharge at a conventional charging station can take up to 20 hours.

Brakes and Stopping

The Prius c stops much shorter than the Focus Electric:


Prius c



70 to 0 MPH

175 feet

185 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

135 feet

140 feet

Consumer Reports

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

140 feet

154 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

The Prius c has a standard space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the Focus Electric; it requires you to depend on roadside assistance and your vehicle will have to be towed.

Suspension and Handling

The Prius c handles at .79 G’s, while the Focus Electric pulls only .78 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

For better maneuverability, the Prius c’s turning circle is 4.6 feet tighter than the Focus Electric’s (31.4 feet vs. 36 feet).


The Toyota Prius c may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 1100 pounds less than the Ford Focus Electric.

The Prius c is 10.5 inches shorter than the Focus Electric, making the Prius c easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space

The Prius c has .3 inches more front headroom and 1.8 inches more rear legroom than the Focus Electric.

Cargo Capacity

The Prius c has a much larger trunk than the Focus Electric with its rear seat up (17.1 vs. 14.2 cubic feet).

Economic Advantages

Insurance will cost less for the Prius c owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Prius c will cost $210 to $900 less than the Focus Electric over a five-year period.

The Prius c will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the Prius c will retain 40.31% to 41.41% of its original price after five years, while the Focus Electric only retains 25.34%.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Toyota Prius c will be $8779 to $11881 less than for the Ford Focus Electric.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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