Ford Fusion Energi is stylish

2017 Ford Fusion

With the number of hybrid options growing yearly, it’s hard to choose the right car. Do you go straight electric, plug in or gas/hybrid combo? Depends on how green you want to go and what your size need are.
I’d like to suggest the Ford Fusion Hybrid Energi. It’s stylish, roomy and gives you a bit of all electric vehicle as well.
The Fusion Energi looks exactly like its gas sibling so you have to look at at the cars badging. It is .2 inches lower than a regular Fusion and has a smaller truck because of the batteries. The fuel tank is two gallons smaller as well. Thee is a door for the plug-in cable.
The Fusion is a striking car, designed alongside an Aston Martin when for owned that company. The interior is one of Ford’s best with seating for five – and that’s comfortable seating for five. The dash is very modern, accommodating a large touch screen for many of the car’s functions. The Titanium version has very firm, but comfortable front seats that fit snuggly. The driver gets a 10 way adjustable power seats with two memory settings. The passenger has to live without the memory settings.
Let’s get to the engine. The Energi gets a 2.0-liter Atkinson cycle four-cylinder coupled with an electric motor powered by lithium ion batteries. You can plug the car into a regular 120v outlet (7.0 hours to charge) or a special 220v outlet for faster charging (2.5 hours). The 35 kw engine can power the car for about 20 miles at speeds up to 85 miles per hour.
The four-cylinder isn’t a slouch. Combined with the electric output you get 141 horsepower. That’s not quite enough for a near 4,000 pound car but it gets the job done. It delivers an impressive 41 miles per gallon overall. Nice. The car has no problem obtaining highway speeds, albeit a bit slower than most gas cars but on par with hybrids of its size. Noise is suppressed fairly well but engine noise under hard acceleration can be harsh.
The Fusion Energi delivers a smooth ride over most surfaces. I’’m impressed by the handling because that’s not what I expect from a hybrid. Steering is as good as on any Fusion but you will have to get adjusted to the brakes. Braking can be very abrupt, even when that’s not your attention. That’s about par for the course on any hybrid. It took me a day to get the feel for the right amount of pressure.

Interior has modern flare

Unfortunately, I didn’t get to try recharging the electric motor. We don’t have outlets on the outside of the house and extension cords are not recommend. I did drive it in the EV mode and I was impressed with the whisper quiet operation. It’s almost eerie.
The Energi Titanium starts at $32,120. Standard equipment is generous, including auto climate control, push to start, SiriusXM, anti-lock brakes, LED lighting, 10-speaker Sony stereo system and leather seats which are heated.
Options on the Energi included blindspot warning, upgraded stereo with SYNC Connect, voice activated navigation system with traffic and travel link, adaptive cruise and heated steering wheel.
My test car topped out at about $38,000. There is an SE version which starts at more than two grand less but with less equipment of course. You got room to play so you can configure the Energi as you like. You could also opt for the regular Fusion Hybrid if the pug-in option doesn’t move you.
I do think you should give both a look. The Fusion thumbs its nose at gas stations and is hard to empty while looking chic in the process. Ford you’ve done nicely.


North American Auto Show debuts Fusion, Dart, Accord

2013 Ford Fusion

The North American International Auto Show (or Detroit Auto show as it was once known) ends this weekend with a plethora of new vehicles introduced by nearly every manufacturer.

Didn’t make it. Neither did I, but here’s a few things of interest. Some you’ll see soon at your favorite dealerships, others, well, if you scream loud enough, may be produced someday.

Ford introduced the 2013 Fusion to oohs and ahhhs. The outgoing Fusion was handsome, but this new sedan is stunning. Ford seems to be knocking the ball back into  Hyundai’s court with a resounding take that! There will be a hybrid, turbo engine options  and a V6. The interior is said to be as pleasing to look upon as well as functional. Ford Mytouch is said to be vastly improved.

Lincoln MKZ concept

Lincoln is finally injecting life into it’s aging lineup with a stylish MKZ concept, said to be the face of all future Lincolns. The company has addressed all of the car’s vices and improved its virtues. The grille may not be for everyone but the car certainly has more style.

Smart, the maker of tiny winy cars, introduced what I thought to be a convertible (and it was) but turns out to be an SUV. Yep. The Smart-For-Us has a 75 hp electric motor that has much torque which Smart says will help propel the car to 60 in the five-second range. That could be anywhere from 4.9 (doubtful) to 7.0 (probable) seconds. Green is in, but will Smart buyers go for this? Aren’t SUVs the antithesis of what Smart’s about. Jon Lovitz introduced the car. Remember the Pathological Liar from Saturday Night Live? Maybe not the best choice if you are trying to persuade someone to buy your product. It’s still only a concept.

Honda showed off the Accord Coupe Concept which is supposed to look very close to the 2013 Accord. So why not show the actual car? It’s Honda. That’s what it does. The actual car will be smaller than the current Accord which was classified as a large car, not midsize. Honda thinks the car’s girth hurt sales. It will be at least as roomy as the current Toyota Camry, offer four, six and turbo engines and a hybrid version. There will be a coupe as well. Look for many options and more standard equipment available.


Dodge will try its hand at small cars again with the Dart, which, thankfully, doesn’t have anything to do with the old Dart. It’s a stylish, thoroughly modern take on the small car. Expect 3 different four cylinder engines with lively performance, ranging from 164 hp to 184 hp. The interior is for the young or young at heart, featuring a configurable dash display, piping, a multi-touch screen and a high-quality looking finish. Dodge says it has midsize room in a compact. If Dodge CEO and designer Ralph Giles had a hand in this I’m sure it will.

And yes, I have to mention the comely Lexus LF-LC concept which won the Eyes On Design award at the show. This is a concept but scream VERY loudly. I want Lexus to make this and bring it in under $100,000.

Lexus LF-LC and designers











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