2017 Ford Fusion Hybrid

The automotive industry is experiencing a crossover takeover. Automakers are busy adding crossovers to their lineups. However, despite this crossover craze, midsize sedans still account for around 15% of all vehicles sold. In 2015, out of around 17.5 m total vehicles sold, the midsize sedans still accounted for over 2.5 million sales.

Ford has carefully looked at these numbers and it is for this reason the Blue Oval automaker is refreshing its Fusion lineup. The mid-size will arrive in this spring. The new model is offered in two variations just like the outgoing models i.e. the conventional hybrid and the plug-in Fusion Energi.

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2017 Ford Fusion Hybrid Exterior

The 2017 Ford Fusion Hybrid will feature subtle changes on its exterior profile compared to the current model.  It will feature the same oblong grille which has been enlarged slightly to mimic the Focus.

The grille’s five chromed horizontal bars have are only featured on the S, SE and Titanium trims. On the Platinum trim, the bars have been replaced with a chromed mesh design like that on the Focus ST and Fiesta ST.

Its headlights are slightly redesigned.  At the rear, the vehicle sports redesigned taillight lenses and a revised bumper. Everything else is carried over from the outgoing model.

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2017 Ford Fusion Hybrid Interior

The interior of the two hybrid models is decent and pleasant; it is almost identical to conventional fusion models. Rear passengers will however have limited headroom due to its sloping fastback. Choosing a sunroof further hurts the headroom. Its seats are comfortable and are wrapped with a recycled synthetic material to enhance its “green” character”.

The models features Ford’s “all-glass” instrument cluster which allows the driver to configure different types of display. Conventional knobs for controlling climate system and the radio volume are retained.

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Other controls are done via capacitive touch-sensitive buttons which are a bit frustrating sometimes. Ford has done away with the MyFord Touch system in favor of the new SYNC 3 which is faster and has more accurate responses. The console features a rotary drive select knob which has helped free space for inclusion of an extra cup-holder.

Though safety ratings are yet to be released, we anticipate excellent ratings just like the 2016 model which received 5-star ratings from NHTSA. The outgoing model was rated with 5 stars for frontal crashes and 4 stars for side crashes and rollovers.  The model will come equipped with stability control, lane departure warning, lane-keep assist, forward-collision warning, cross-traffic alert and radar support.

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Engine Specs and Performance

The two hybrid models are powered by the same 2.0 L, 4-cylinder engine which is paired to a two-motor system that doubles up as the transmission system.  The system mimics an electrified version of a CVT system.

Extra juice is stored in a lithium-ion battery pack mounted in the trunk. The battery pack of the plug-in hybrid Energi is larger and has a higher capacity. The plug-in Energi features a 3.3-kilowatt charger capable of replenishing a fully depleted battery in 3 hours via a charging port located on its left front fender. The port is accessible through the door. In fact, the charging port on the door is the only physical difference between the conventional hybrid Fusion and the Energi apart from the badges. The plug-in Energi has a 19-mile pure electric driving range.

The conventional Fusion Hybrid is rated to return 42 mpg on combined drives. Though impressive, the rate is below most of its rivals. The Fusion Energi, on the other hand, delivers 38 mpg on combined drives and 88 MPGe when running on electric energy alone.

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Price and release date

The 2017 Fusion Hybrid will be offered in several trim levels, they are the base S, SE and the top Titanium trim. On the other hand, the Fusion Energi will be offered in SE, Titanium and Platinum trim levels.

The base Fusion Hybrid will have a starting price of around $ 26,000 while the Fusion Energi will start at around $ 34,000. The top-of-the-range Fusion Platinum Energi will start at around $ 42,000 and can rise depending on the options selected. According to our sources, hybrid versions of Ford Fusion should appear in showrooms in mid-2017.

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Competition

More manufacturers have launched their own hybrids. As such, the 2017 Ford Fusion Hybrid will face more rivalry than ever.

Among its competitors are the new entrant in the like of Chevrolet Volt which joins the more established models like the Toyota Camry, Kia Optima Hybrid, Hyundai Sonata Hybrid, Toyota Prius V Hybrid and Honda Accord Hybrid.

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