By Keith Buglewicz
KBB Expert Rating: 8.4
For 2017 the new Ford Fusion gets a thorough refresh in the name of keeping it competitive with the class-leading Honda Accord, Toyota Camry and Kia Optima. There are also two new models. First is a luxury edition called Fusion Platinum that adds leather on the dash, piped seating and other tech and luxury upgrades. The other is the new Fusion Sport, which adds all-wheel drive (AWD) and a 2.7-liter 325-horsepower V6 engine, blending family-car and sports-sedan sensibilities into one car. The rest of the lineup sticks with 4-cylinder engines, while the two hybrid models -- the Fusion Hybrid and plug-in Fusion Hybrid Energi -- return to anchor the eco-friendly end of the lineup.
The 2017 Ford Fusion answers a lot of transportation questions. If you want a practical and affordable family sedan, it has you covered. It's also an eco-friendly hybrid or plug-in hybrid. The new Platinum and Sport models promise luxury and performance, respectively, and the Fusion remains a high-tech champ.
There's not a lot working against the Fusion. Diesel fans will have to look elsewhere, although the Hybrid models do extremely well on fuel economy. About the only other thing we can imagine is brand loyalty.
KBB Expert Ratings
Ford’s new Fusion gets subtly revised exterior styling, mainly focusing on the nose, headlights, lower bumper and rear taillights. There are also changes inside, with a new rotary shifter and upgraded Sync infotainment system. Two new models also debut: the luxury-oriented Platinum, and the sporty, V6-powered Fusion Sport.
The 2017 Ford Fusion wants to be all things to all people, and it does a surprisingly good job of it, in both front- and all-wheel-drive forms (FWD, AWD). All...
... benefit from a sporty suspension and sharp steering, from the base models with their 2.5-liter 4-cylinder, mid-level models with their punchier and more efficient turbocharged 1.5-liter 4-cylinder, or higher-end models with the 240-horsepower 2.0-liter 4-cylinder. If you're looking for an even sportier experience, the new 2017 Fusion Sport offers a twin-turbo 2.7-liter V6 and AWD, while luxury shoppers can opt for the new Platinum model. If you're more practical than hedonistic, the two different Fusion Hybrids -- regular and plug-in -- offer fuel-friendly and nicely sorted driving; there's also a Platinum version of both if you're in the have-it-and-eat-it camp. The easier-to-use Sync system improves the driving experience of any Fusion model that has it.
PLUG-IN HYBRID VERSION
With electrification a bigger deal these days, the Fusion Hybrid Energi with its 21 miles of electric-only driving range is a serious player that could let its driver go literally weeks without refueling. But you can still take that road trip thanks to the gasoline engine, and a subsequent 610-mile range.
Fine, we're suckers for horsepower, and the 2017 Ford Fusion Sport has it in spades with its 2.7-liter 325-horsepower twin-turbo V6. Coupled with AWD and an even better suspension, the Fusion Sport promises to be an Audi A6 for those on a budget.
The new 2017 Fusion Platinum interior, with its stitched dash and premium leather seats with contrast piping, is sumptuous enough to make the Lincoln MKZ feel redundant. Other upgrades this year for the rest of the lineup include a rotary shifter and electronic parking brake. However, Ford has largely kept the roomy 5-passenger interior intact. It's roomy enough for four adults, three kids can fit in back, and its big trunk holds more than a Honda Accord’s. Hybrid models have a smaller trunk owing to the battery, but even they have a pass-through to the rear seats for longer items.
The grille, headlights, lower bumper and taillights on the 2017 Fusion have been reworked subtly, but effectively. It still looks like an Aston Martin, but that's no bad thing. Platinum models add extra chrome and unique wheels, while Fusion Sport models go for a sporty demeanor with standard fog lights, a mesh grille and charcoal-colored wheels. On a practical note, the clever EasyFuel capless gas-filler system means you'll never again lose the fuel cap, or have to wrestle it open or closed. Fusion Energi models use a lighted ring around the charge port, with a fully lit ring meaning charging's complete.
The base-model 2017 Fusion S comes nicely equipped, starting with a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder and 6-speed automatic transmission. On top of that, the Fusion S comes with manual climate control, a tilt/telescoping steering wheel, audio system with USB and auxiliary inputs, a rearview camera, and Ford's Sync wireless communication system with voice control. Fusion SE models add a 10-way-power driver's seat, rear air vents, a 6-speaker audio system and 17-inch wheels. Higher-end models get the powerful 2.0-liter turbocharged engine, upgraded audio systems, Sync3 with greatly improved usability, and niceties like dual-zone auto climate control, leather seating and 18-inch wheels.
Besides the two new models -- the performance-oriented Fusion Sport and the near-luxury Fusion Platinum -- there are plenty of stand-alone options. You can add blind-spot monitoring, lane-keeping assistance and adaptive cruise control with collision warning to help expand driver awareness, and make the Fusion an excellent road-trip sedan. There's a reverse-sensing system to warn you of obstacles, and an Active Park Assist system will actually parallel-park the car for you. All-wheel drive is also available on SE, Titanium, Sport and Platinum models, making it one of the few family sedans ready for foul-weather security in Snowbelt states.
There are six different ways to motivate your 2017 Fusion. The base 2.5-liter 4-cylinder exists, and you should skip it. Instead, start at the SE sedan, which comes standard with the 1.5-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder, with the option of upgrading to the 2.0-liter version. The 2.0-liter is standard in the Titanium and Platinum models. Fusion Sport comes with a new-for-Fusion 2.7-liter twin-turbo V6 with 325 horsepower, making it the most powerful car in its class. The two electrically augmented Fusion models -- Fusion Hybrid and Hybrid Energi plug-in -- use a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder gasoline engine and electric motor coupled to a continuously variable automatic transmission for excellent fuel economy; the Energi has up to 21 miles of EV range. AWD is available with the 2.0-liter 4-cylinder.
175 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
175 lb-ft of torque @ 4,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 21/32 mpg
1.5-liter turbocharged inline-4
178 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
177 lb-ft of torque @ 1,500-4,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 23/34 mpg
2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4
240 horsepower @ 5,500 rpm
270 lb-ft of torque @ 3,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 21/31 mpg (FWD), 20/29 mpg (AWD)
2.0-liter inline-4 and permanent magnet AC synchronous motor (hybrid)
188 horsepower (total)
129 lb-ft of torque @ 4,000 rpm (gasoline engine only)
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 43/41 mpg
2.0-liter inline-4 and permanent magnet AC synchronous motor (plug-in hybrid)
195 horsepower (total, with full battery charge)
129 lb-ft of torque @ 4,000 rpm (gasoline engine only)
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 97 mpg-e, 42 mpg combined
2.7-liter twin-turbo V6
325 horsepower @ 5,500 rpm
350 lb-ft of torque @ 3,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/26 mpg
The 2017 Ford Fusion S with its standard 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine starts with a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of about $23,000, including the $875 destination charge. However, the SE offers more for your money at about the $25,000 mark when equipped with the 1.5-liter 4-cylinder. Titanium models start at about $31,000; the new V6 Fusion Sport at about $34,300, and the Fusion Platinum at about $37,500. AWD adds about $2,000. A base Hybrid S starts at about $26,000, with prices spanning all the way up to the $42,000 Hybrid Energi Platinum. The 2017 Fusion's price spread is on par with the Toyota Camry, Honda Accord, Nissan Altima and Chevy Malibu. Be sure to check the KBB.com Fair Purchase Price to see what others in your area paid for their 2017 Fusion. Resale value is near the top of the class, close to the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord.