2010 Ford Fusion - Heading the Charge
|Topics: Ford Fusion
March 23, 2010
Fuel economy should be high on car shoppers' lists. Trust us: Even if the price of gas is relatively low at the moment, it'll head higher. The Fusion will offer three revised and fuel-efficient engines mated to all-new 6-speed manual, 6-speed automatic or 6-speed SelectShift Automatic transmissions (the ladder exclusive to SPORT).
Fusion sedans boast a long list of new features designed to keep it extremely competitive in the cutthroat midsize sedan market. Highlights include aggressive new front-end styling, a choice of three very fuel-efficient and powerful engines, an all-new sporty version, and safety ratings that are hard to top.
The Fusion's restyled front end includes a more aggressive grille, a domed hood and new headlights. To help improve fuel mileage, underbody panels improve aerodynamic efficiency. The Fusion has a wider, sportier look. The interior has been restyled too, with metallic finished trim on the center instrument panel and steering wheel and doors.
When equipped with the 3.0-liter FFV V6 and an automatic transmission, the Fusion got 26 mpg in the highway test and 18 mpg on the city: Ford expects those numbers to rise to an estimated 19 city and 28 highway for 2010. All-wheel-drive versions recorded 17 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway for 2009. 2010 models are expected to see an improvement in overall fuel economy. The 3.5-liter V6 is available only in the new Fusion SPORT edition.
Only slightly behind safety and economy, Americans like power—and the 2010 delivers. Compared to the previous 2.3-liter, the 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine makes 15 more horsepower and 16 addition pound feet of torque for totals of 175 horsepower and 172 pound-feet of torque. Those are numbers once reserved for powerful V6s and smaller V8s. The old four-cylinder engine used to come with a five-speed automatic. Now it has six-speed versions of each. The additional gears help produce good acceleration to merge into traffic and excellent highway fuel mileage.
The 3.0-liter FFV V6 engine gets 19 more horsepower, to 240, and 17 more pound-feet of torque, to 222. The 3.0 running on E85, 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline boosts horsepower to 250 but reduces overall fuel mileage. Not long ago, those were great numbers for a sporty V8. The new engine in the lineup, the Fusion SPORT's 3.5-liter V6 teamed with the 6-speed SelectShift, produces a strong 263 horsepower and a peak of 249 pound-feet of torque for a more spirited driving experience.
One way Ford engineers got more power out of these engines is with electric power assist steering, featured on the new 2.5L and 3.0L engines. Rather than the previously employed hydraulic assist that relied upon engine power, electric power assist draws no power when the vehicle is going in a straight line.
The 2010 Ford Fusion got the government's five-star rating—the highest available—in front driver, passenger, and side impact tests and rollover testing in the all-wheel-drive model. It received four out of five stars for side rear passenger impact and front-wheel-drive roll over. Electronic stability control and four-wheel, anti-lock brakes are standard.
For those who regularly come across deep snow, the Fusion is available with all-wheel drive when equipped with either of the V6 engines. To improve handling, ride comfort and steering feel, Ford revised and retuned Fusion's suspension, front and rear. To reduce wind and road noise, the 2010 Fusion gets an acoustic windshield, thicker front door glass, thicker hood insulation, and sound-deadening materials in the doors, trunk and headliner. In addition to the 263-horsepower V6, the 2010 Fusion SPORT gets 18-inch diameter wheels, a sport-tuned air intake and stiffer suspension tuning. On the outside, the Sport gets a special lower grille, side rocker moldings and a trunk-mounted spoiler. An available feature that may help prevent a parking lot fender bender is the Blind Spot Information System (BLIS) with Cross Traffic Alert. This radar-based system warns drivers of hidden traffic approaching.
Ford's popular SYNC voice-activation and entertainment system, compatible with most Bluetooth-enabled cell phones and MP3 capable devices, is an available feature. Fusion offers a Sony surround sound system that boasts 390 watts and 12 speakers.
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