- Sharp styling after all these years
- Multiple powertrain options
- Efficient hybrid models
- Standard active safety tech
- Comfortable front seats
- No more Fusion Sport
- Due to be discontinued
- Snug rear seat
- Aged interior
- Lackluster non-hybrid mileage
The 2020 Ford Fusion still delivers great hybrid fuel economy and classic good looks, even though it's set to retire.
The 2020 Ford Fusion is in its final year in new-car showrooms. Despite its age and impending demise, it’s a stylish, safe and well-equipped value among mid-size sedans. We rate it 6.2 out of 10 overall. (Read more about how we rate cars.)
For 2020, the Fusion lineup remains mostly unchanged save the cancellation of the near muscle-car Fusion Sport model, an all-wheel-drive, twin-turbocharged sleeper that will be missed despite its high asking price.
Many cars even a few model years old can start to look stale, but the Fusion soldiers on handsomely. It still looks good, as it has since its introduction in 2013. The interior hasn’t aged as well, but benefits from a clean design with decent material quality and comfortable front seats.
Available with three different gasoline engines and two hybrid drivetrains as well as all-wheel drive, the Fusion is one of the more versatile mid-size sedans, and one of the only members of its class to offer all-wheel drive. An anemic 2.5-liter inline-4 is standard; either the optional 1.5-liter or 2.0-liter turbo-4 are better options. The Fusion Hybrid incorporates a battery pack and electric drivetrain alongside a gas 4-cylinder, while the Energi plug-in model manages 25 miles of all-electric driving range.
Most new Fusions come standard with an 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, as well as built-in Waze navigation that uses your smartphone’s data plan. While the seats are comfortable (and Volvo-esque to our eyes), the rear seat lags behind rivals in terms of leg and head room.
While scores are not yet available for 2020, the Fusion has received good crash ratings from both the IIHS and the NHTSA, and active safety features such as automatic emergency braking and active lane control come standard.
2020 Ford Fusion
The 2020 Ford Fusion wears pretty sheet metal but has a garden-variety interior.
Some new vehicle designs age well; others age poorly. The 2020 Ford Fusion still looks good after 7 model years and hardly any changes. We think it’s still worth a 5. (Read more about how we rate cars.)
Proportionally, the Fusion is long and lean, while on the narrow side for a mid-size sedan. The sweeping roof and Aston Martin-esque grille are highlights and have since been echoed by many of its more recently redesigned competitors. Higher-trim models look much better than base S trims, which have plainer trim.
The interior is similarly restrained, but hasn’t aged quite as well as the body. A bright 8.0-inch touchscreen takes center stage (an ancient 4.2-inch screen on the S model), and though there are plenty of buttons for controls, they’re all similarly sized and spaced far apart, making ergonomics slightly annoying. Matte silver trim and some higher-quality materials like leather on top models are a nice touch, but the cabin is dated compared to more contemporary rivals.
2020 Ford Fusion
The 2020 Ford Fusion drops the Sport, but keeps charging as a plug-in hybrid.
The 2020 Ford Fusion offers a wide variety of powertrains, but the only one missing this year is the fastest version. We give it a 6 based on its still lively handling. (Read more about how we rate cars.)
Gone for 2020 is the Fusion Sport, a 325-horsepower, all-wheel-drive sleeper sedan with a twin-turbo V-6. The Fusions that remain are fitted with a series of 4-cylinder engines and two hybrid powertrains, still making for one of the most diverse engine lineups of any sedan. The base Fusion S utilizes a 2.5-liter inline-4 that makes 175 hp, but its breathless acceleration is best left relegated to rental fleets. A 1.5-liter turbo-4 with 181 hp is available in the SE and SEL trims, and is tuned for better torque and acceleration than the non-turbo engine. The top-tier Titanium model sports a 2.0-liter turbo-4 with 245 horsepower that’s more than adequate for highway and mountain passes alike. Front-wheel drive is standard, while all-wheel drive is available on the 2.0-liter model. A 6-speed automatic transmission remains the only gearbox option.
A Fusion Hybrid model is also available, making use of a 2.0-liter Atkinson cycle inline-4 with an electric motor for a total output of 188 horsepower. A continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) pushes power to the front wheels, and a 1.4-kwh battery pack is tucked in the trunk.
Available only in Titanium trim, the Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid adds a 9.0-kwh battery and 25 miles of electric-only range. Charging takes about seven hours on a normal household outlet, and about half that time with a Level 2 charger.
All Fusions are deft handlers, with a taut suspension design and sharp steering that’s as comfortable on long, sweeping bends as it is in tight corners. The brakes are a high point for the hybrid models compared to other, less consistent hybrids. Ride quality can be quite firm, though, and the Fusion skitters over some big bumps rather than absorb them.
2020 Ford Fusion
Comfort & Quality
The 2020 Ford Fusion suits front passengers well, but rear seat space is tight and trunk space shrinks on hybrids.
The 2020 Ford Fusion is a victim of its sultry sheet metal, with a comfortable front cabin but tight passenger space in the rear. We give it 7 out of 10 in this category. (Read more about how we rate cars.)
At 192 inches long, the Fusion is almost full-size, but all of that length doesn’t translate to vast interior space. Trunk size is an acceptable 16 cubic feet, but the batteries in the hybrid and Energi models drop that figure to 12 cubic feet for the hybrid and 8.2 cubic feet for the plug-in, significantly limiting practicality.
Second-row occupants have only 37.8 inches of head room thanks to the Fusion’s sloping roof, making long journeys tough for taller occupants.
The front seats are plenty comfortable and come with standard lumbar adjustment for the driver on all models, as well as cloth upholstery. Synthetic leather is available on the SEL model, and the top-tier Titanium uses real hides that are soft and durable.
Base models have hard plastics throughout, but much is replaced with soft-touch and higher-quality materials as you climb up the range.
2020 Ford Fusion
The 2020 Ford Fusion has standard safety we like, and good crash-test scores as well.
The Ford Fusion boasts solid past scores and a suite of standard active safety features that make it a standout. Since the Fusion is unlikely to be crash-tested before it’s dropped, we base its safety score of 8 on its 2019 results. (Read more about how we rate cars.)
The 2019 Fusion performed well in both federal and independent crash tests, managing five stars overall from the NHTSA and “Good” scores all around from the IIHS minus a “Poor” headlight rating, keeping it from earning a Top Safety Pick award.
Last year, the Fusion got automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, automatic high-beam headlights, and blind-spot monitors as standard. Adaptive cruise control is available on some trims when bundled with satellite navigation. Outward vision is fine for a sedan.
2020 Ford Fusion
The 2020 Ford Fusion is well-equipped across the range – as long as you ignore the base model.
The 2020 Ford Fusion is best ignored in base S form—it comes reasonably well-equipped throughout the rest of the range. We give it a 6 out of 10 here, with the caveat that you may be able to score a great deal, given its impending demise. (Read more about how we rate cars.)
The Fusion S is a rental fleet special, complete with an engine, four wheels with plastic hubcaps, a dismal 4.2-inch screen with too many buttons, and hardly any options. Ignore it and start with the SE model, which adds a turbo-4 engine, power-adjustable front seats, automatic climate control, 17-inch alloy wheels, an 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as well as Waze navigation, rear parking sensors, and more. Adaptive cruise control and satellite navigation are only $650 more and well worth the cost, making the SE a great value at less than $26,000. That value is worth a point above average to us.
The SEL model pushes the price over $30K, but includes heated front seats, synthetic leather upholstery, 18-inch wheels, a memory driver’s seat, 11-speaker audio, and more. Finally, the Titanium trim runs the gamut for around $35,000 and includes real leather, a more powerful engine, Sony audio, all-wheel drive, a power moonroof, and navigation with adaptive cruise control.
Both the SE and SEL models can be had with the more powerful 2.0-liter engine and all-wheel drive for around $2,800 more.
The Fusion Hybrid is available in SE, SEL, and Titanium guise, while the plug-in Fusion Energi comes only in Titanium trim, but does include a federal tax credit and some state incentives for eligible buyers. The plug-in hybrid could be an especially strong value in the Fusion’s final year, when tax credits and discounts are piled on each other.
2020 Ford Fusion
The 2020 Ford Fusion’s middling fuel economy is offset by thrifty hybrid models.
The 2020 Ford Fusion is so-so in the efficiency department, though the hybrid models do help its case. We give it 5 out of 10 based on the gas mileage of its mid-range turbo-4. (Read more about how we rate cars.)
The base Fusion S makes a middling 21 mpg city, 31 highway, 25 combined; the 1.5-liter turbo-4 improves things to 23/34/27 mpg. The 2.0-liter turbo models with front-wheel drive manage 21/31/25 mpg, while all-wheel drive drops those numbers to 20/29/23 mpg.
The hybrid model manages a solid 43/40/41 mpg, while the plug-in model gets 42 mpg combined, 102 MPGe combined with a full charge, and up to 25 miles of battery-only range. All Fusions use regular gasoline despite a variety of turbocharged options.