Ford Fusion – What the Auto Press Says
The 2011 Ford Fusion ranks 2 out of 18 Affordable Midsize Cars. This ranking is based on our analysis of 20 published reviews and test drives of the Ford Fusion, and our analysis of reliability and safety data.
Reviewers were impressed with the 2010 Ford Fusion’s upscale interior, more powerful engine options and available all-wheel drive. The 2011 Ford Fusion maintains these traits, but gains a few more improvements.
The Ford Fusion had an excellent 2010. Its refreshed exterior styling and strong list of standard and optional features helped it get a top spot on our Affordable Midsize Car ranking list, win 2010 Motor Trend Car of the Year, earn a Consumer Reports recommendation and become a Consumer Guide Best Buy.
Largely unchanged for 2011, the Ford Fusion preserves the 2010 Fusion’s reputation as an Affordable Midsize Car with a nice interior, great fuel economy and a host of features like Integrated Blind Spot Mirrors and HD Radio — a new feature for 2011 — that appeal to buyers who, according to Kelly Blue Book, “need the practicality of a well-appointed, well-engineered and crisp-handling family-sized four-door.”
Perhaps one of the coolest additions to the 2011 Ford Fusion is the MyKey system. Designed for teen drivers, MyKey keeps young people safe by limiting their top speed to 80 mph, limiting radio volume to 45 percent, chiming continuously when seat belts aren’t buckled and providing low-fuel warnings. MyKey is standard on the 2011 Ford Fusion and will keep parents at ease when their children borrow the car.
The Ford Fusion also boasts Ford’s unique SYNC system, which provides turn-by-turn directions without the need for an expensive navigation screen, offers vehicle health updates and lets drivers control smart phone apps and mp3 players through voice commands. Many luxury cars can’t offer SYNC’s functionality, especially for under $25,000 for the I4 SEL.
Most car reviewers agree that the 2011 Ford Fusion is ideal for small families. It is practical for city drivers, looks good, prioritizes safety, doesn’t waste fuel and won’t break the bank.
Other Cars to Consider:
If you’re interested in a family car with a sporty side, check out the Mazda6. Starting at $18,600, it’s cheaper than the 2011 Ford Fusion, and its strong fender flares, teardrop-tapered roofline and winking headlights give it a bit more charisma. However, the Mazda6’s jazzy look comes at a cost. Its fuel economy is poor, averaging an EPA-estimated 20 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway. The Mazda6’s interior is also unimpressive and fitted with cheap materials.
If you are attracted to the Fusion’s functional side, the spacious 2011 Hyundai Sonata is worth a look. Affordably priced at $19,195 for the base GLS trim, the Sonata offers plenty of power for buyers’ daily driving needs, good fuel economy — 23 mpg in the city and 34 mpg on the highway — and has a sleek, stylish exterior. One big plus with the 2011 Sonata: the GLS comes with Satellite Radio and Bluetooth connectivity.
If price isn’t an issue, but eco-friendliness and fuel economy are priorities, the Ford Fusion Hybrid is a wise choice. Ranked at the top of the class, it has fuel economy ratings of 41 mpg in the city and 36 mpg on the highway. In addition to great fuel economy, buyers receive the same sprightly performance and high-quality interior finishing and amenities the 2011 Ford Fusion gasoline models offer.
Also, the Ford Fusion is one of the few Affordable Midsize Cars available with All-Wheel-Drive, making it a popular family car in the snowbelt. Other all-wheel drive options include the Subaru Legacy, VW Passat and the Suzuki Kizashi. AWD shoppers would do well to test drive at least one of these alternatives before buying a Ford Fusion.
Ford Fusion: The Details
Because the Ford Fusion experienced a refresh in 2010, the 2011 model is largely unchanged. However, it does receive a few updates, like HD radio, MyKey and available rain sensing windshield wipers.
The Fusion is available in S, SE, SEL and Sport trims, and is offered with three engines: a 2.5-liter I-4 engine, a 3.0-liter six-cylinder engine and a 3.5-liter six-cylinder engine. The sport trim is set apart because of its standard features: a more powerful engine — the 3.5-liter Duratec V6 — a six-speed automatic transmission and 18 inch five-spoke aluminum wheels. The Ford Fusion Hybrid is also available, but is reviewed separately.
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