2017 Ford Fusion Sport
Class: Midsize Car
Miles Driven: 204
Fuel Used: 11.5 gallons
Real-world fuel economy: 17.7 mpg
|CG Report Card|
|Big & Tall comfort ratings are for front seats only. "Big" rating based on male tester weighing approximately 350 pounds, "Tall" rating based on 6'6"-tall male tester.|
|Room and Comfort||B+|
|Power and Performance||A|
|Fit and Finish||B|
|Report-card grades are derived from a consensus of test-driver evaluations. All grades are versus other vehicles in the same class. Value grade is for specific trim level evaluated, and may not reflect Consumer Guide's impressions of the entire model lineup.|
|Big & Tall Comfort|
Driving mix: 65% city, 35% highway
EPA-estimated fuel economy: 17/26/20 (city/highway/combined)
Base price: $33,605 (not including $875 destination charge)
Options on test car: Sport Upgrade Package ($2000) special paint ($395)
Price as tested: $36,875
The great: Acceleration, handling
The good: Cabin comfort, ride quality
The not so good: Fuel economy
The new Ford Fusion Sport my lull you into a sense of complacency when you first lay eyes on it. Sure, it’s got a black-diamond grille surface, distinct 19-inch alloy wheels, and a subtle decklid spoiler, but any bucks-grabbing “sport appearance” option package could do that for any modest midsize sedan.
Get the Fusion Sport out on the road though, and complacency is shattered. Its 325-horsepower turbocharged 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 will sweep out the mental cobwebs the first time you power up an expressway entrance ramp or swing out to pass slower traffic. The fact that it does this without an abundance of engine or exhaust noise (the Fusion is pretty quiet on the road) just adds to the car’s sneaky-fast vibe.
There’s a slight penalty at the pump for this; an EPA-rated 17 mpg in the city is more like what you’d expect from a midsize SUV. In a small sample size—59.9 miles, 65 percent of them in city-type driving—this tester averaged 19.6 mpg, which is pushing the car’s 20-mpg combined-mileage projections.
Other quick impressions of the all-wheel-drive Sport are alert handling and an overall nice ride, a tidy control layout with an easy-to-work infotainment system, and pretty good personal-item storage in the cabin. Passenger room is quite good in both rows, with nominal space for three adults across the back seat, and the trunk is usefully sized and shaped. If anything disappointed this driver about his brief turn in the Fusion Sport, it was poor satellite-radio reception.
If you can accept a small twin-turbocharged V6 as a stand-in for a large V8, then you can accept the Ford Fusion Sport as a modern-day muscle car.
The math is pretty simple: With a power-to-weight ratio of around 11.3 pounds per horsepower, the 2017 Fusion Sport matches up nicely with a 1969 Dodge Charger with a 375-horsepower 440-cubic-inch V8, or a 1970 Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS with a 360-horsepower 454. (Both the Charger and the Monte come in around 11.0 horsepower per pound of car.)
Of course, neither of those classic-era muscle machines came anywhere close to returning 18 mpg, nor did they offer the safety and security of AWD.
Sadly, no other mainstream automaker sells a high-performance midsize sedan. As such, the Fusion Sport resides in a class of one, and it’s really a very entertaining class to be shopping in. If you still enjoy the commute, this potent Fusion packs a lot of muscle into a perfectly responsible and comfortable package.