Posts tagged Fusion
Now that we’ve had some time to decompress from the craziness that was North American International Auto Show Week, we figured we’d go back through some of our photos from the show to bring you a select few highlights and also some of the disappointments we saw in Detroit. With at least 20 new unveilings at NAIAS in addition to the hundreds of brand new cars decorating the manufacturers’ booth, it was hard to pick just one favorite. So here’s our list of the Hots and the Nots.
HOT: Mazda MX-5 Speedster Concept
We already love the new MX-5, but the skunkworks team at Mazda took an extreme lightweighting approach to this build for show car for SEMA and removed the windshield and convertible top, saving 250 lbs in the process. The wheels have been replaced by lightweight forged wheels and the interior has been suitably stripped out as well. Although it’s unlikely Mazda would ever put an honest sub-2,000 lb Miata into production, we’d still love to get behind the wheel of this thing!
NOT: Chevrolet Bolt
Switching gears a bit, the Chevy Bolt is the EV city-car hatchback take on Tesla’s upcoming Model 3. With a base price of around $30,000 after federal tax credits, it won’t exactly be cheap. Hopefully buyers can look past the price tag and understand that getting 200 miles of range and lightweight aluminum construction isn’t exactly the easiest thing in the world. It’s just not what we’d call… um… pretty.
HOT: Buick Avista Concept
“That’s a Buick?!” We heard this remark from a number of people on the show floor and must admit, it’s certainly a strikingly beautiful vehicle. This certainly isn’t your grandpa’s Buick. This sexy coupe could potentially be put into production on the same chassis as the Chevy Camaro and Cadillac ATS, and use a slightly detuned version of the CTS V-Sport’s twin-turbocharged V6 to put out around 400 horsepower. For now, it’s just a concept but we’re honestly excited for the day Buick builds this thing!
NOT: Mercedes-Benz E-Class and SLC-Class
While the new E-Class is the best midsize sedan the company has ever built, had we not looked at the badges, we never would’ve guessed that it wasn’t either the C-Class or the S-Class. Aside from changes in wheelbase and options, they all look nearly identical. It’s a problem that has plagued their competitor Audi for ages, and now Mercedes has fallen into the same trap, it would seem. To top it off, the new SLC replaces the SLK Convertible and while it’ll surely be the best small convertible they’ve ever built, we’re disappointed that they ditched the V8 in the top SLK 55 model and now uses a twin-turbo V6 that offers 54 less horsepower than the engine it replaces.
HOT: Lincoln Continental
We went nuts over the Continental Concept last year, and the refreshed MKZ in LA. Now, Lincoln has finally given us a production version of the Continental that we were all hoping for and it’s absolutely gorgeous. While it doesn’t come with the classy blue suede slippers of the concept car, it’s still about as suave as you can get. We especially love the jewel-like headlights, the touch-activated door handles, and yes, even the blue leather-lined interior.
HOT: 2017 Ford Fusion Sport
We already love the Fusion sedan so we certainly won’t complain about 325 hp and AWD to the mix! The styling is a pretty mild evolution of the current Fusion with a little Focus mixed in for good measure. Now we just need to get our hands on one to see if the “Sport” name fits the driving experience.
HOT: Ford GT pre-production model
This is it! The 99% production-ready Ford GT! In terms of exterior styling, what you’re looking at is the 2017 Ford GT. The interior has some trim bits that are still up in the air but this is more or less what you can expect to see later this year as the Ford GTs start hitting the streets. We also managed to get the first footage of the Ford GT going into Race Mode! Plus, this stormtrooper’ed out version looks stunningly good in person.
NOT: GMC Acadia
The new GMC Acadia is surely a practical day-to-day car that provides comfort and security on the road for you and your passengers but look at it. It’s not exactly awe-inspiring. Vehicles like this are the definition of automotive purgatory. We’ll pass.
HOT: Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid
If you’re looking for a more inspiring people mover, we recommend checking out the new Chrysler Pacifica. It’s a bold, new look for what had been the Town & Country, and given all the new tech under the skin, it deserved a new name. How many minivans do you know of that can get 80 MPG and 530 mile range?!
HOT: 2017 Lexus LC500
Our first thought when we saw this was that Lexus had just rolled out another recycled concept car from the a couple years ago. They promptly corrected us though that this stunning, 467-hp, V8-powered sports car is not just a pipe dream. This is an actual production LC500 as it will appear in dealership showrooms later this year.
HOT: Beefy Off-Road Trucks (Nissan Titan Warrior Concept, Ford Raptor SuperCrew, Ram Rebel)
We’re suckers for a good, solid truck. And it doesn’t get any more solid than the Ford Raptor, right? Well, it seems at least a few manufacturers, including Ford themselves, are trying to improve upon the hot new off-road adventure truck segment. What surprised us the most was Nissan’s attempt with the new Titan Warrior concept. It was big and meaty looking, like a 20oz Porterhouse on wheels.
NOT: Infiniti Q60
We’re not sure what it is about the Q60 that is so uninspiring but despite it bring a 400-hp 2-door coupe, we just can’t get excited about it. Maybe it’s just because Infiniti has never had much of a reputation of making cars that are as dynamically pleasing to drive as they are to look at, or because there are just so many competent cars competing for the crown in this segment.
HOT: Genesis G90
Hyundai’s brand-new luxury spin-off brand is betting on the new Genesis G90 going head to head with the current king of luxury sedans: the Mercedes-Benz S-Class. While we’ve been skeptical of the Korean giant really backing up its claims of world-class luxury, the G90 might just be the car to prove us wrong. If only the name weren’t so generic…
We’re out here at the 2016 North American International Auto Show here in Detroit, MI this week and it surely didn’t disappoint. Day 1 is usually chock full of big reveals and included the updated Ford Fusion, including a 325 HP, AWD Sport model we’re excited about, as well as Raptor-fighting Nissan Titan “Warrior” Concept truck which looked awesome. We also Hyundai spin off it’s luxury brand Genesis with the new Genesis G90 to replace the Equus, while the G80 takes over the original Genesis sedan in the new lineup. Other notable debuts from Monday included the new BMW M2, a 365 hp small sedan, Volkswagen’s Tiguan GTE Concept that looked just as ready to tackle the Dakar Rally as it did the shopping mall, Porsche unveiled the new 911 Turbo and Turbo S, Buick debuted a surprisingly gorgeous 400 hp coupe based on the Camaro, and Lexus rolled out the LC500 and LC-FC, the former is a shockingly beautiful production-ready sports coupe with a 467 hp V8 while the latter is an elegant hybrid sedan. For us, the highlights of the show was actually the production-ready version of the incredible Ford GT that we saw debut here in concept form last year, and the new MX-5 Speedster concept that Mazda rolled out at SEMA this past November. But enough from us, take a look at the photos below and tell us which cars you like! We’ll be back tomorrow to recap Day 2 of the 2016 North American International Auto Show.
When the 2013 Ford Fusion debuted at the 2012 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, MI, it was immediately clear that Ford had a hit on their hands. Following in the footsteps of 2012’s Ford Focus, the new Fusion was thoroughly redesigned with more features,power, and most importantly, refinement. For that reason, I was thrilled to have the opportunity to drive and enjoy a 2014 Ford Fusion Titanium for a weekend courtesy of Morrie’s Minnetonka Ford.
This new standard of quality is immediately obvious as soon as you sit down in the driver’s seat. The soft yet supportive leather-trimmed seat happily greets you with its warm embrace thanks to the much appreciated heated seats. The door closes with a reassuring *thunk* that makes the structure feel solid and well crafted. Gripping the supple, leather-wrapped steering wheel and looking ahead to the instrument cluster which features dual 4.2-inch screens flanking a central tachometer give the impression that this car wants to be driven.
Ford no longer offers a V6 option in the Fusion. Instead, there are five different 4-cylinder options ranging from a 2.5L making175 HP all the way up to a 2.0L EcoBoost engine producing 240 HP that comes as standard with the Titanium trim level. For those wanting the best possible fuel economy, there is also a 2.0L 4-cylinder that is paired with an electric motor as either a hybrid or plug-in hybrid vehicle. Although the Fusion Titanium Hybrid can return a claimed 47 MPG, I was more than happy with the 27 MPG I saw while driving the 2.0L EcoBoostequipped Titanium, especially considering the optional all-wheel drive I had to help get me through the snow and ice. The 2.0LEcoBoost is perfect for those who want a balance of power and fuel economy and I have no doubt that in better weather, I’d have no problem achieving the factory claimed 33 MPG on the highway.
Where the new Fusion really shines though is with the technology and safety features that are available. While the Fusion Titanium I drove was just about as fully loaded as you can get, it did offer a lot of bang for your buck too. Inside, it came equipped with a SYNC with MyFord Touch infotainment system that featured an excellent navigation system with 3D buildings and landmarks on the 8-inch touchscreen. With the Titanium, you also get things like heated seats, keyless entry and start, a Sony premium audio system and more. Overall, the Fusion can be equipped with nearly any feature you could imagine but if I had one gripe, it’d be with Ford’s decision to get rid of traditional knobs and buttons and replace them with a capacitive touch panel. I personally think the big, plastic panel looks really clean, but the problem with capacitive touch panels is that they’re hard to use in the winter unless you have specially designed gloves. It became a bit of a hassle to take my gloves off every time I wanted to adjust the temperature or change radio stations. On the flip side, SYNC is one of the few systems that allow the driver to change all of those things using voice commands so maybe I’m just being a bit nit-picky.
All in all though, I thoroughly enjoyed my weekend with the 2014 Ford Fusion Titanium. It’s quiet, comfortable, and fast which all contributes to a certain sense of confidence for the driver. During my time with the Fusion, it performed flawlessly when driving a bunch of friends to dinner or during countless errands where I really had the ability to test out just how big the trunk was. In every situation, the Fusion exceeded my expectations as a car. While the $37,475 price tag of the fully-loaded Fusion Titanium I tested may seem like a lot for a car that has a base price of just $21,970, and even though the Fusion I tested is more expensive than most of its competition, the features it offers at that price still makes it a bargain. This point is most obviously made clear when looking at the safety features offered in the Fusion. For example, the Driver Assist Package that came equipped on the particular Fusion included the Blind Spot Information System with cross-traffic alert that uses sensors in the rear quarter panels to warn you if someone is in your blind spot or driving by as you’re backing out of a parking space. It also includes lane-departure warning with a lane-keep assist feature that will gently guide you back into your lane if you start to drift out of it. The driver monitoring system will also watch your driving patterns and alert you to pull over and grab a coffee or get some rest if it senses that you’re not paying as much attention to the road as you should for an extended period of time. Of course, you also get automatic high beams and rain sensing wipers as part of the package as well.
This package, when combined with the Adaptive Cruise Control and Active Park Assist systems, means that the Fusion is closer than nearly any other car on the road today to bridging the gap towards being an autonomous car. So while the Fusion may not be the autonomous car of the future today, the features it does have all contribute to making it feel more comfortable and stable on the roads of today. And it’s that reason that the Fusion, with its combination of high-tech features, elegant styling, and refined comfort, has become one of Ford’s major runaway success stories.
Guest blog post written by: Alex Bellus – a well-known automotive photographer in the Twin Cities area and a frequent attendee of MN C&C at the Automotorplex. He is an Automotive Analyst for IHS Automotive and has a wide range of automotive knowledge. Keep your eye out for his next Blog Post where he will highlight another popular new vehicle!