Manufacturers, it seems, are starting to favor configurator microsites over the old-fashioned grind-out-a-press-release method of informing the public of new product details. The reason why is somewhat obvious: by tracking the configurations built by zip code, manufacturers get an idea for regional preferences in advance.
We’re pretty sure that configurators are used to float pricing and trim levels, too. If enough people raise a red flag and say “too expensive,” a manufacturer just may take the opportunity to revisit pricing or standard features before bringing an all-new vehicle to market.
You can see evidence of this in the disclaimer page of Ford’s 2013 Fusion
configurator site, which advises consumers that equipment levels and content may change prior to the car’s release. The site doesn't even provide pricing information yet, although Ford says it will be released in the coming weeks.
Even without pricing the site is useful to get an idea of 2013 Fusion
colors, trims and available options. The model range will begin with the entry-level S, followed by SE, Titanium and SE Hybrid trims. Driving enthusiasts will be disappointed to see that no comparable model to last year’s Sport is planned.
While available options for the base “S” model appear to be sparse, even SE models can be equipped with a wide array of safety features not typically associated with mainstream brands.
Buyers can opt for adaptive cruise control, active park assist and a lane departure and lane keeping system, as well as expected options like voice activated navigation, leather upholstery, heated seats and Ford’s SYNC / MyFord Touch infotainment system.
Want to build a new Fusion
of your own? Head on over to the 2013 Fusion configurator website