2017 Ford Fusion Review

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7.3
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7.0
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7.0
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8.0
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2017
The Car Connection
2017
The Car Connection

The Car Connection Expert Review

John Voelcker John Voelcker Senior Editor

The 2017 Ford Fusion blends enduring good looks, a wide variety of powertrains, impressive interior space and comfort along with all the latest electronic safety systems and a few design upgrades.

With its Aston Martin-esque styling, the 2017 Ford Fusion mid-size sedan remains a comfortable, spacious, and good-looking entry in an especially competitive segment. It competes with the Honda Accord, Hyundai Sonata, Toyota Camry, and a brand-new and much improved Chevrolet Malibu.

We named it our Best Car to Buy in 2013 and it continues to earn high ratings, aging pretty gracefully. 

This year, the Fusion gets a light refresh that includes mildly updated styling front and rear, some upgrades to the interior, a new Platinum top-end trim level, and a new performance model called the Fusion Sport.

The 2017 Fusion earns an overall rating of 7.3 on our refreshed rating scale. (Read more about how we rate cars.)

Fusion styling and performance

The profile, stance, and details of the Fusion continue to make it one of the more attractive cars among mid-size sedans. The fastback shape looks especially dashing in darker colors. This year, the grille is slightly wider and sleeker, and new LED headlamps join the LED taillamps. A new chrome strip at the rear adds “elegant imagery,” and there are new wheel designs as well.

For 2017, the Fusion adds a fifth powertrain option, a new twin-turbo 2.7-liter V-6 in the Fusion Sport model that puts out 325-horsepower and 380 pound-feet of torque. It comes standard with all-wheel drive, and is considerably more powerful than larger V-6 engines in the Accord and Camry. It gets continuously controlled damping that detects potholes and adjusts the damping to reduce their impact. The Fusion Sport is quite fast in a straight line, but it adds a lot of weight over the nose so it doesn't handle like a full-blown sport sedan.

The base powertrain remains a 178-hp, 2.5-liter 4-cylinder and 6-speed automatic transmission, with only adequate performance that doesn’t live up to the rakish design. Then there’s a 1.5-liter EcoBoost turbo-4 coupled to the same automatic transmission; offering a more rewarding drive that can deliver great real-world gas mileage. The 1.5-liter engine comes with stop-start system as standard.

The previous top-of-the-line engine was the 240-hp 2.0-liter EcoBoost turbo inline-4, which puts 270 lb-ft of torque and substituted well for the V-6 of similar output that it supplanted. This is the engine you’ll get if you want the Fusion with optional all-wheel drive (unless you go for the hot-rod Fusion Sport, on which it’s standard).

Finally, the fuel-efficient (but still responsive) Fusion Hybrid and its plug-in sibling, the Fusion Energi both earn ratings of more than 40 mpg combined from the EPA. They’re covered in a separate review.

The ride and handling of the Fusion is top-notch for the class. The taut, absorbent steering is well-tuned, and the car corners in a firm, flat, and reassuring manner. But ride quality isn’t hurt by the handling, and most versions feel eager and nimble—unlike many mid-size sedan competitors.

Fusion comfort, safety, and features.

Inside the Fusion, the interior conveys an impression of quality. The materials look and feel substantial, the noise is well damped and vibrations are suppressed, and subtle cues like the sound and feel of the doors as they open and close combine to indicate a solid, well-built, and high-quality vehicle.

Changes this year include a redesigned console with a rotary gear-selector knob, freeing up space for more storage, and Ford says the cupholders are more ergonomically place. Repositioned USB ports are now illuminated as well, and the 2017 Fusion is fitted with the latest Sync 3 version of Ford’s interactive infotainment system.

Even the manually adjusted front seats in the base model are comfortable and supportive, and rear leg room is sufficient for four adults to ride comfortably, or five in a pinch. Head room is good as long as you avoid the sunroof, which cuts significantly into vertical space, especially in the rear. And Ford has provided ample and useful storage space in the doors and center console.

Previous models of the Fusion have received good, but not quite top-tier, ratings from safety agencies. For 2017, Ford has added a slew of new electronic safety systems, bringing the Fusion up to par with its most advanced competitors.

These include adaptive cruise control that works down to a full stop and back up to speed; pre-collision assist with pedestrian detection; a lane-keeping system; driver alerts for drowsiness; and an enhanced Park Assist that now includes perpendicular as well as parallel parking. It continues to offer the innovative inflatable rear seatbelt system that's been offered on some of Ford's crossovers.

The Platinum trim gets hand-wrapped leather for its steering wheel, instrument panel, and door trim. It has its own grille, as well as special 19-inch alloy wheels.

The new Fusion Sport gets some unique styling to set it apart from more pedestrian Fusions. These include its own 19-inch wheels, steering wheel shift paddles, LED fog lamps, a rear spoiler, aluminum pedals, leather and synthetic suede sport seats, and active noise cancellation.

Fusion prices for 2017 start at around $23,000 for the base S trim level, and move up through a top end of roughly $42,000 for the Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid in the new Platinum trim level. A heavy hand on the options list can push even a mid-level model well into the $30,000-plus range, if you add items like the moonroof, navigation, upgraded wheels, and the expanded range of new safety-tech items.

Other options of note include an Appearance Package to dress up the base Fusion S model with 18-inch alloy painted Ebony black wheels, fog lamps, and a rear spoiler, and a Cold Weather package for the SE that bundles remote starting, heated cloth seats, and floor mats. The best value is probably the Fusion SE, which offers a reasonably well-equipped model for about $30,000.

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The Car Connection Consumer Review

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November 25, 2016
2016 Ford Fusion 4-Door Sedan SE FWD

Great car for the money...

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I wanted a berline so I bought the Fusion SE with the 2l ecoboost FWD because of its better price compare to the others in the same category, its look and its features. Now it has 5000 km and I still love it... + More »
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November 12, 2016
2016 Ford Fusion 4-Door Sedan SE FWD

Love my Fusion. A lot of car for not a lot of money

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I bought my Ford Fusion a few months ago because the rebates were so good. I drove it and it drives like a dream. Exceptional gas mileage. A lot of great comfort features. Drove out with a great rate and... + More »
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August 5, 2016
2016 Ford Fusion 4-Door Sedan S FWD

Not bad for a base model sedan

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Purchased the 2016 s sedan with a great rebate totaling 4500, bring a new sedan price closer to certified used cars. The interior is amazing for a base model, soft plastics and fit were above past hard plastic... + More »
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January 19, 2016
2016 Ford Fusion 4-Door Sedan SE FWD

This car has style & comfort with many options

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This will be my third Fusion 2012,2013 & 2016 and they just keep getting better
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September 15, 2015
2016 Ford Fusion 4-Door Sedan Titanium FWD

All the trimmings

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I absolutely love this car!! It is one of the best I've owned or driven for it's price point. I've put this car through the paces. High speed handling in curves and winding roads, acceleration and braking... + More »
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September 8, 2015
2016 Ford Fusion 4-Door Sedan Titanium AWD

Feels better than my BMW ever did!

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I am completely impressed with the steering, brakes, ride and overall quality of my 2016 Fusion AWD. I previously had a 2103 BMW 328i X-Drive, it had numerous problems right from day 1 of ownership, the Fusion... + More »
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February 24, 2016
2015 Ford Fusion 4-Door Sedan Titanium Hybrid FWD

A Solid Car All the Way Around

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Exterior design with the Y spoke wheels is spectacular. Interior has numerous features and is quite comfortable. Get numerous comments about how it's as sophisticated, attractive and luxurious as a BMW. Car... + More »
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January 6, 2016
2015 Ford Fusion 4-Door Sedan Titanium FWD

Bad MPG and too much torque steer for mediocre performance

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Decent car with far too much torque steer for a 2015 car. Interior has nice features but is a little cheap looking. Gas mileage is very disappointing.
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August 19, 2015
2015 Ford Fusion 4-Door Sedan SE FWD

James Bond styling vis a vie Aston Martin look grill/front end, with great performance from the 2.0 liter E boost turbo!

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Great looks and styling caught my eye when first revealed in 2012-13 model year. Turbo performance is very responsive and combined mpg @ 26-27 is ok. Leather seating surfaces are 'adequate' for a middle of the... + More »
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April 28, 2015
2015 Ford Fusion 4-Door Sedan SE FWD

A very nice car.

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Bought my Fusion a few months ago. Now over 3,000 miles later I would still buy it again. It is quiet, and smooth, and stable. All things that I would expect of a new car. The performance was a little... + More »
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