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Hypermiling in Brookline with the 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid

Posted by Bill Griffith  March 19, 2009 10:08 AM

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Fusion-front-609.jpgThe Fusion Hybrid in front of the Larz Anderson Auto Museum, a former family estate that contains some of the rarest antique cars still in original condition. (Bill Griffith/Globe Photo)

Ford brought one of its 2010 Fusion Hybrids to the Larz Anderson Auto Museum in Brookline Wednesday, giving its marketing people a chance to show off the vehicle to the area's automotive media and fleet managers.

The vehicle, rated at 41 m.p.g. city and 36 m.p.g. highway, goes on sale later this spring. The price, for a well-equipped Fusion, will be $27,200, about $3,000 more than for a four-cylinder gasoline-powered version that, in its own right, delivers 23 city and 34 highway.

Many in attendance had the chance to drive the Fusion around a short loop through Brookline and Boston, trying to break the 50 mile-per-gallon mark on the vehicle's dashboard readout.

This driver – the first to head out on the circuit – didn't fare well, averaging about 37 m.p.g. The engine was cold when we started out, and I didn't have the right touch for feathering the throttle – even though the smart gauge on the dashboard would grow vines and leaves when I did.

Rick DeMeis of Automotive, the second to drive the Fusion, managed 51.2 on the loop, topping the standard of 51.1 set by Ford's John Viera, director of sustainability business strategies. Viera and Praveen Cherian, project manager for the Fusion Hybrid, had lots to say about both the Fusion and Ford's plans for coming fuel-efficient vehicles.

Fusion highlights

  • Driving in the Boston area can be tough on brakes. The Fusion's regenerative braking system, which recovers up to 94 percent of braking energy (the electric motor does the bulk of the braking, turning into a generator and using the recovered power to recharge the battery pack). Thus brake pads are expected to last three times longer.
  • Ford stacked the battery pack behind the rear seat. That still allows for a large trunk. The "battery" actually is 208 individual cells the size of a household 'D' cell.
  • The Fusion can reach 47 mph on electric power alone – provided you have the right touch on the throttle.
  • You don't feel the gasoline engine kick in or cut out. Cherian says that is because of the powertrain control module is calibrated to ease the transition.
  • Oil change intervals are expected to be at 10,000 miles because the engine does only half the work in this hybrid configuration.

Ford's people are proud of the Fusion and that it has its best-in-class mileage figures despite being 200 pounds heavier and not as aerodynamic as its chief rival, the Camry Hybrid. Cherian laughed when he was asked if the Fusion Hybrid was a quick response to Washington's call for more fuel-efficient vehicles.

"This has been a three-year project," he said. "We [auto engineers] are aware of all that's going on; however, we have to keep our focus on designing ways to get every drop of fuel efficiency out of our products."

Down the road

Viera gave the group a peek at what's coming down Ford's product pipeline.

"The buying public is unpredictable," he said. "When gas hit $4 per gallon, small cars were flying off the lots. We couldn't build them fast enough. Now that it's under $2 per gallon, people aren't as interested in the small vehicles."

Future Fords of all sizes, Viera said, would have six-speed automatic transmissions and Eco-Boost engines. These will be smaller displacement blocks (V-6 in place of V-8s, I-4s in place of V-6s) with direct fuel injection and turbochargers. "They'll be cleaner in terms of emissions and have better performance and fuel economy," said Viera.

"The goal is to have the flexibility to produce cars on global platforms," he said. "That way, we can tailor the engines or bodies – the 'Top Hats' – for specific markets. We've got to be nimble. Some countries will prefer diesel, others electric, some bio-fuel, and yet others hybrids or plug-in hybrids."

All photos by Bill Griffith.




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62 comments so far...
  1. Detroit has been getting bashed quite a bit lately, but this car is an achievement.
    Motor Trend rated it well above the Camry Hybrid. It has sharp styling for a hybrid as well. Also, it is "only" priced about $3,000 above the gasoline version, which is quite a bit less than the $5,000 markups we've been seeing from the Japanese makers. This smaller markup means that it is quite feasible for a purchaser of this hybrid to see an actual return on their investment, even with lower gas prices.
    The one question that remains is long-term reliability.
    Can this car remain problem free up to and past 100,000 miles, or will it begin to crap out at 70,000, like far too many other Detriot models.

    Posted by Beetle March 19, 09 11:40 AM
  1. The car doesn't get the mileage many expected but its a step in the right direction. Unless companies like Ford get possitive feedback then they have little incentive to develop alternative technologies. So hats off... Now improve!

    Posted by Freestone March 19, 09 11:57 AM
  1. Great-looking car! Ford has done well with the gas and hybrid versions of this model, nice incremental styling cleanup and improved engines/transmissions on all models. Love that the hybrid looks like a normal car and that is great mileage for a vehicle of it's size. The car was already highly regarded for reliability and the basis of the hybrid powertrain IIRC has been shaken-out in the Escape for a couple of model years. I would imagine it has long road-life.

    Posted by carguy March 19, 09 12:14 PM
  1. Wow, sharp car. If I were in the market for a hybrid, this would be my first choice. American made and very well designed. Nice job Ford!

    Posted by BWT March 19, 09 12:15 PM
  1. I've always respected Ford more than I do the other American companies.
    This car is proof that Ford has the ability to survive bankruptcy.
    I would like to see Ford make cars that go after the subcompact category though, something to compete with the insight or fit, cars that are more in my price range

    Posted by aj March 19, 09 12:15 PM
  1. To #5 the new Fiesta is coming to US, learn about it at this link:|32522973|210910854

    Posted by carguy March 19, 09 01:03 PM
  1. If this car had been available when I purchased a car last May I would have definately test driven it. My goal was to get a car in the mid-sized family class that got over 30 mpg city miles. I found that I had only 3 choices - the little Prius, Camry Hybrid and Altima Hybrid. I love my Altima Hybrid getting 38 mpg in the summer and 34 in the dead of winter. I hope the Fusion lives up to it's ratings - we need more cars that meet the needs of families while getting great gas milage. This is SOOO much better than the GM hybrids - no wonder GM is going bankrupt.

    Posted by Dave March 19, 09 01:11 PM
  1. It's the Big One now. Chrysler is too small and their quality has been suspect for 30 years or more. GM is too unfocused. How many different brands do they have? They should make Chevys, GMCs and Cadillacs. That's it.

    Posted by tcoogan7 March 19, 09 01:24 PM
  1. Wait a minute...This Bill Griffith article (ad) ,second paragraph states the Fusion Hybrid get 41 m.p.g in the city and if you take it out on the highway it drops to 36 m.p.g. ??? ...Congratulation to all those who posted the former glowing comments ...They either can't read .or are shills for the ad ... I got an idea...lets just leave the vehicle in the garage...then it might get 120 m.p.g in the garage,in the city of course, and if they take it out on I-95 or some super highway, with limited access...maybe then they can get 12 m.p.g. ..On a cloudy day with the wind at their back. Naturally

    Posted by Craig March 19, 09 02:01 PM
  1. Craig, I suggest you please take a look at how a gasoline electric hybrid vehicle works and also take a look at all other vehicles similar to these ( Prius, Insight) as they all get lower MPG on the highway. It is the design characteristics of this set up that allows the electric system to offer full power at lower speed but works in continuity with the gasoline motor on the highway.

    Posted by steve March 19, 09 02:09 PM
  1. "This Bill Griffith article (ad) ,second paragraph states the Fusion Hybrid get 41 m.p.g in the city and if you take it out on the highway it drops to 36 m.p.g. ???"

    This actually makes some sense given that the car can use electric power up to 41 mph. Since the car would use solely gas on the highway, I think it's reasonable to assume mileage might actually be better in the city.

    Posted by Andrew March 19, 09 02:11 PM
  1. It has to do with the regenerative braking during city driving. Learn to read Craig

    Posted by DCR March 19, 09 02:27 PM
  1. Craig, of course the mpgs drop on the highway, it has to use the gas engine at those speeds. In the city it is useing stored electric power = no gas burned. The gas engine in the hybrid is similar in size to the gas-only 4-cylinder model but is more efficient (atkinson cycle)...but this is somewhat offset by the weight of the hybrid system, so mpgs are only slightly better on the highway. The hybrid will deliver much higher average MPG if you do a mix of highway and city...ex:
    50/50 city highway average = 38.5 mpg hybrid, 28.5 gas-only using numbers from the article.
    If you only drive highways then there is not much of a benefit (unless you drive Boston highways ie sit in traffic a lot).

    Posted by carguy March 19, 09 02:27 PM
  1. "Craig, I suggest you please take a look at how a gasoline electric hybrid vehicle works and also take a look at all other vehicles similar to these ( Prius, Insight) as they all get lower MPG on the highway. "

    True for Prius, but not true for Insight.

    Honda's IMA hybrid drive is different from Toyota's hybrid synergy drive. The Civic and Insight, like traditional gas-only cars, do better on the highway than the city according to the EPA.

    Posted by Beantown Bronco March 19, 09 02:42 PM
  1. Hybrids components in most hybrids carries an 8 year/100K mile warranty, and the same is true of the Ford Fusion hybrid.

    Full hybrids, like the Fusion hybrid, Altima hybrid, Prius, et al. do get better mileage city than highway. I know it turns on it's head everything we know. Remember at lower speeds a full hybrid can switch into EV mode where it's running only on battery power and not burning any gas at all.

    The Fusion hybrid is looking better and better as a replacement for my Saturn SW2.

    Posted by Ken Grubb March 19, 09 02:54 PM
  1. Hybrids also get better mileage in the city because of the constant braking (which recharges the batteries), while braking is rarer on the highways (except 93 South on a Friday in the summer!)

    Posted by Mark D. March 19, 09 03:02 PM
  1. The brakes will last 3 times as long? I would think that might be the life of the car!

    Our current 2007 Fusion still have the original front and rear brakes and the car has 60,000 miles. That would mean brakes would need to be done at 180,000 miles?

    Our 2007 Fusion is best car we have ever owned, even after having Toyotas for 20 years.

    Posted by Galroc March 19, 09 03:13 PM
  1. I currently drive a 2007 Camry Hybrid and I love it. It averages right at 39 or 40 MPG. I bought this car when Detroit had nothing better to offer. The Fusion Hybrid looks pretty good. Once they are available in my area I'll take one for a test drive. It will be interesting to see how it feels and responds. If I like it and we can come up with a decent deal, there may well be a Ford in my future. This is of course also driven by the need to support the auto industry in the U.S. I'm in if the quality is there.

    Posted by Ed March 19, 09 03:16 PM
  1. 2 questions: Are there any realistic plans (existing or otherwise) to create a Hybrid type vehicle for less then $20k? And generally speaking-perhaps there isn't enough cars on the road to determine this- but are the maintenance costs associated with Hybrids more/less vs. non-hybrid ?

    Posted by dubbleg March 19, 09 03:45 PM
  1. I bought a fully loaded Ford Fusion Hybrid 2010 when it made the dealer listing back at the end of Decemeber 2008, in Montreal Canada. Delivery expected to be late this month, but I expect the arrival will be in May or even June. I call it a 40,000 dollar computer on wheels, what with the Naviigation, Sync, Traffic & Parking-lot Sensor System, Back up Camera, Satellite Radio and Voice Commands for everything including the blue tooth phone. Can't wait for delivery.

    Posted by Robert Roll, Montreal, Canada March 19, 09 04:44 PM
  1. O.k. for all those people who can't understand the mileage drop, read the article again. The brakes are what generate electricity for the batteries if you don't step on the brakes (e.i. highway driving) you get less mileage, because your using the batteries and not putting anything back in. Ford's Escape hybrid is the same way. The Fusion also has the same reliability rating as the Toyota Camry now. Have you driven a Ford lately?

    Posted by Adam Tourville March 19, 09 05:20 PM
  1. ""This Bill Griffith article (ad) ,second paragraph states the Fusion Hybrid get 41 m.p.g in the city and if you take it out on the highway it drops to 36 m.p.g. ???"

    This actually makes some sense given that the car can use electric power up to 41 mph. Since the car would use solely gas on the highway, I think it's reasonable to assume mileage might actually be better in the city."

    That's close, but not the actual reason. it's not whether it is using electric power or not, it's because wind resistance increases as a cubed power of speed, so at highway speeds you have a higher power demand than at lower (city) speeds.

    Add to that the fact that the car reclaims a good portion of the energy required for each braking instance (again, something that is much more significant in city as opposed to freeway driving) and you have the other reason that city driving efficiency is higher than highway driving efficiency.

    If you were able to drive on the highway in a normal car at 30-40 mph, you would also see a much higher mpg even without the hybrid technology, just because of the lowered wind resistance at those relatively low speeds.

    Posted by steve March 19, 09 05:57 PM
  1. merican cars crap out at 70,000 miles. My last two vehicles had over 150,000 miles when traded and my current Doge has 185,000 miles and is still going strong

    Posted by Ray March 19, 09 06:44 PM
  1. Hi All,
    Well designed Hybrid Cars get better city mileage primarily because at slower speeds air friction is much less. In the city you are accellerating - where the engine has good efficiency - then travelling at a constant speed -where a Hybrid car turns off the engine and keeps the car moving electrically - then braking - where a hybrid car stores energy back into the battery - then stopping - where a Hybrid car automatically shuts down the engine.
    At highway speeds, even though its constant speed, the air friction cannot be recouped. So the engine runs along at low power - which is an inefficient operating pwer level.

    Posted by donee March 19, 09 08:26 PM
  1. The Fusions are very good cars, My mom had driven foreign cars for the past few cars she has had after leaving the blue oval but I managed to get her into a Fusion a year back and it is much nicer than a Camry could ever dream about being and will hold up just as good if not better. I never really got where the misconceptions about American cars being less reliable came from as I have a 94 Bronco that I have owned since new and have over 180k miles on the original Drive train minus a few minor parts but still rock the original alternator and just replaced the starter a few months ago, It may get horrible gas mileage ( 10 MPG with the 351) but it's a tank that just wont die no matter how bad I push it. I do however see a new F350 in my future when the economy recovers so I can repay the Bronco with a full restoration for the awesome service that it has given me.

    Posted by steve March 19, 09 08:41 PM
  1. There have been comments here about whether this Ford will be reliable in the long run. I have a 2008 with 20,000 miles, so I really can't say I know for sure, although mine has been problem free so far. When I purchased my Fusion, it was recommended by Consumer Reports, and has maintained a "much better than average" reliability record. So my sense is that this Fusion will be the same. Ford seems to be the only American car company that is serious about building good reliable cars.

    Posted by MikeCanada March 19, 09 10:43 PM
  1. Adam Tourville, I'm sorry, but I have to point out that your explanation of the mileage drop is incorrect.

    The reason why mileage is lower on highway is mainly due to air resistance and increased rolling resistance as well as other factors that I chose not to mention.
    Also, given by the equation energy=1/2 mass * Velocity ^ 2
    which basically means, the faster you go, the amount of energy increases by the square of the velocity.

    Braking WASTES energy no matter if its a hybrid or not. Think about all the conversion losses involved with converting from mechanical to electrical to chemical and then back. Taking the article's numbers at face value, you lose 6% of the gas spent to get you up to whatever speed you were at before you started braking. That means lower mileage.

    Posted by Bob64 March 20, 09 12:39 AM
  1. Had I not bought an Altima Hybrid last fall, I would definitely be test driving the Ford Fusion. My big concern would be reliability for a car with no track record. On another note, carguy I see you have an Altima Hybrid too. How are you getting such great mileage? I'm getting closer to 31-32 mpg overall.

    Posted by Hypermiler March 20, 09 09:56 AM
  1. regardless of the actual reason for the drop in mileage on the highway, windspeed cubed or electric power, or some combination of the two, i think we can all agree that Craig is a donkey who did not really read the article.

    Posted by cutstotheheartofthematter March 20, 09 10:05 AM
  1. Electric cars seem to be the wrong direction as electricity is poised for huge rate hikes shortly.

    Posted by Marc Gosselin JR March 20, 09 11:18 AM
  1. Timing is everything... Had the Focus Hybrid been available in late 2007 when I bough my Camry Hybrid I would have definitely test driven one. My 1996 Ford Explorer has 133,000 miles with minimum maintenance (oil changes 2 - 4 times a year) and still running strong, so I feel reliability for domestic autos have really improved. My Camry regularly gets 37 - 38 MPG (ciyt/highway) in winter, and usually gets 40 - 44 MPG (city/highway) the rest of the year. The reason the Toyota's get better gas milage around town is they can run on battery only, for long stretches under 42 mph. However, highway milage is very good if you maintain 65 mph (a sweet spot for the Camry Hybrid). As happy as I am with my Camry Hybrid I sincerely hope the Focus Hybrid is wildly successful!

    Posted by Bill March 20, 09 11:31 AM
  1. Will there also be a Hybrid Mercury Milan?

    Posted by Luke March 20, 09 12:32 PM
  1. The Mercury Milan Hybrid is getting released at the same time. Costing info is available at Edmunds. I actually like the grill on the Milan better.
    That said, it is always fun to read these posts on Hybrid mileage HWY vs. City. So many opinions, so little facts.
    Point 1 - The MAJOR reason that HWY mileage is worse than City is... Wind resistance, which varies with the CUBE (not square) of velocity. Check out if you don't believe it (look under the Power Section.)
    Point 2 - The biggest hits to mileage in the city are losses during accelerating and braking. Lead footed starts lose efficiency because the power plant is working against inertia to accelerate the car from one speed (stopped) to another. This happens during braking, too. On a regular car the braking converts the kinetic energy of the car speeding along into heat by rubbing brake rotors and creating friction. This energy is lost and cannot be recovered. A regenerative system has little generators (actually the drive motors being used backwards) that allow a good portion of this energy to be recaptured to the battery for use later. Maybe someday they will figure out a way to make acceleration more efficient, too.
    Point 3 – While it is true that the car can go up to 47 MPG on electric power only, it only does it while there is sufficient power in the battery. After that the gas engine has to come on to recharge the battery and power the car. In the grand scope, running on electric is not a factor in the EPA MPG estimates except that it is using the power from the regeneration system that otherwise would have been lost.

    Posted by Jim March 20, 09 02:22 PM
  1. Where is it built? If it is not made in The United Stated, they can keep it.

    Posted by Donald E. Thornton March 20, 09 03:26 PM
  1. good question where is it buil?

    Posted by bill March 20, 09 04:57 PM
  1. A friend that works with all kinds of cars did some statistics and said to pay the extra money for a hybrid with the gas mileage I'm now getting, to recover the cost of the car gas would have to got to about $17.00 a gallon. I don't think I'll be buying one.

    Posted by Pepawsgirl March 20, 09 06:30 PM
  1. I'm at least two to three years from buying my next car. This one is in my sights.

    Posted by alan March 20, 09 06:55 PM
  1. I'm a firm believer in the data provided in Consumer Reports. One key fact that they point out in buying a new vehicle is not to buy a car that is a new model. It is one of the main reasons that I have not test-driven or purchased either the 2010 Focus or the Mercury Milan. A second issue that concerns me is what if these hybrids(Fords or whatever) start crapping out in the 6th, 7th or even the 8th year? Would that not cause a tremendous drop in their resale value? I'm driving an 11/112 year old Pontiac that was not a new model. For the first 46-7 years the reliability was pretty good afterwards, it went into the pits with expensive repairs especially the Dex-Cool issue. So, obviously I'm not too cool about buying a newly revamped car especially, one with a new power system

    Posted by J. Pirate March 20, 09 11:32 PM
  1. In answer to the "where is it built", it is built, as is the Mercury Milan and Lincoln MKZ, at the Ford Assembly Plant in Hermisillo, Mexico. The UAW site, link below, has American manufactured cars.
    The Mazda 6 sedan, new this year, can really be said to be more "American" as it is assembled in Flat Rock, MI by the UAW and gets good reviews. I have no connection with Mazda or Ford, by I'm interested in the Mazda 6 myself.

    Posted by Joe M March 21, 09 04:36 PM
  1. I am not so sure I buy the concept that hybrids get better mileage in realistic city driving. If you want to keep up with traffic it just doesn't come true. I have driven hybrids for 5 years now (first Civic then Camry) and I always get better mileage with sensible highway driving.

    Posted by Rick March 21, 09 08:34 PM
  1. all Ford Fusions are built in Mexico.

    Posted by Steve March 23, 09 05:15 AM
  1. doubleg - check out the reincarnated Honda Insight for a hybrid under 20k

    Posted by Scott March 23, 09 02:34 PM
  1. I hope the auto makers and federal government pay attention to comments like that from Pepawsgirl. Some Americans will pay extra for wind-generated electricity (I do). Some will pay extra for a higher mileage car. Most, I believe, consider total cost of ownership important, e.g. paying $3k extra for a car should save $3k in gas. If that is true, Honda's simpler-but-less-costly hybrid technology would be a better bet until the Prius-style hybrids can get manufacturing costs down.

    Posted by Scott March 23, 09 02:40 PM
  1. ...perhaps I should give the feds some credit. The $3400 tax credit that the fusion hybrid will carry presumably wipes out the price premium. Cynically, I might guess that Ford only spends $2000 extra manufacturing the hybrid model, then prices it $3000 above the standard Fusion knowing that the consumer is getting this tax credit.

    Posted by Scott March 23, 09 02:44 PM
  1. 97 Crown Victoria - 200k miles and still runs fantastic - 23MPG city/hwy mixed driving

    06 Ford 500 40k miles - ~30MPG Hwy 20 City - Wonderful car - bigger inside than my Crown Vic

    I'm purchasing a 2010 Fusion Hybrid right now. Expect delivery in 3 weeks. My expectations are that this will also be a great car

    Great job Ford!

    Posted by Neil March 23, 09 07:25 PM
  1. Hey Hypermiler.
    Altima hybrid driver here too. I'm getting an average of 35mpg.

    The mileage change usually has to do with more highway driving. The most efficient average speed seems to be around 40-45mph. Drivers around that range usually get mileage in the range of 38-43mpg.

    @bob64 & @Jim Wind resistance is only 1 issue. Battery capacity (total charge), electric motor size for high speed propulsion & weight requirements of the system are other limiting factors.

    Posted by Stephen March 23, 09 08:32 PM
  1. My mom has a 2006 Five Hundred with 120000 miles on it without any problems. She has done the 100000 mile fluid flush and 4 new tires at 110000, and thats it. No new brakes, nothing. All she did was get new mudflaps because one was torn off last winter. My dad has a 2007 Explorer with 110000 miles on it and all he has done has put new spark plugs in it (alone with tires and normal maintenance). I feel that ford has really increased their quality and durability. Ford has the greatest chance of surviving of the "big three". I know I'm looking forward to the Ford Fiesta..... cha cha cha

    Posted by Darin March 23, 09 10:45 PM
  1. Ford has indeed made a positive impression on many during these trying economic times. They started laying the groundwork when they first introduced the Escape/Mariner hybrid. Of the American "Big Three", they definitely have the most potential for recovery. The Fusion/Milan has already been proven to achieve an average over 60 mpg.

    Plans are in the works for a road trip set a record of 1000 miles on one tank of gas.

    Posted by Msirach March 24, 09 12:59 PM
  1. Pepawsgirl - read comment #44. On other hybrids, your friend may be right, but as mentioned in this article, the hybrid goes for about $3K more than non-hybrid and you get a federal tax credit. Thus, you are on the plus side from the day you drive it off the lot.

    Posted by Elifazeeka March 24, 09 01:26 PM
  1. Scott,
    My cynicism is not the cost of the upgrade, but of the timing of the release of the Fusion. According to the dealerships in my area, Ford has not yet released a Fusion to the dealerships yet and they won't be available for a couple months. Therefore the Federal tax credit that Ford is advertising of $3400 is misleading, since the credit reduces by half after March 31,2009. In addition to Ford's misleading info, those same dealerships have all said they will be charging thousands over the sticker. No real help for us the consumers.

    Posted by MMark March 24, 09 02:34 PM
  1. Ford should not be considered with the same automakers in Detroit. They're on a whole different level of thinking than the rest.

    Posted by matt March 24, 09 09:30 PM
  1. I rented a fusion last year and really liked the size and ride.If the hybrid were available I would have bought it.I did buy an 2008 civic coupe which is a nice car but really a small 2 seater.It would seem that the fusion hybrid would be perfect for American roads.

    Posted by MoMo March 25, 09 07:40 AM
  1. I had a 2005 Toyota Prius with 121,000 and it was stolen in February. I was very impressed with the hybrid technology. I never had one problem with it nor did I ever have to replace the brakes. When the insurance company totalled the car, they paid me over $18,000. So, the resell value was extrememly good and were the new 2010 models available, I would definately purchase another Prius. Since they are not, I am waiting for the new 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid. It was suppose to be here March 17, but still has not arrived. If they don't hurry up, I would definately buy another Prius.

    Posted by Tracy Bradley March 25, 09 07:26 PM
  1. HATS OFF to Ford! Great job. One US automaker seems to be on the right track. The look and feel of Ford vehicles are stepped up a notch and they are well poised to take on their Japanese counterparts, who are actually slipping. It's too bad GM will sink - look at their cars, technology and thinking. God save them - what a mess.

    I can't bear to look at GM - do they not look at any of their competitors? They never have anything that is attractive nor would any US citizen want to drive.

    Again - great job FORD! Just dump Mercury and FOCUS FOCUS FOCUS on what you have going - no need to replicate the damn car under the Mercury nameplate!


    Posted by Back2BasicsWithFord March 26, 09 11:42 PM
  1. The last Free market automaker in the United States hits the bullseye.

    I love this car, it is now also top rated in safety as well.

    I was going to give Ford a look just because they refused bailout money, but I think they sold me with the FFH - Ford Fusion Hybrid

    Posted by Joe March 30, 09 01:36 PM
  1. Response to MMark. Ford's advertising of the $3,400 tax credit may seem misleading, but in my opinion it is not. If you order before March 31, 2009 it does not matter when you take delivery, you still qualify for the full credit (subject to IRS requirements). I found a local dealer that would let me order a 2010 Fusion Hybrid for a $100 refundable deposit. If I do not like it when it comes in, they will give me my $100 dollars back. Their reasoning was they don't have one to test drive and they are afraid that I may not like it once I drive it. Of course they also believe they will have no problem selling it if I do not want it.

    Posted by KKrause March 30, 09 04:43 PM
  1. I bought a fully-optioned Fusion Hybrid on Saturday, qualifying for the $3400 tax credit; will take delivery whenever. It's my first new American car in more than 30 years, a commitment to Ford's future and a bit of a gamble as well. The reviews on this car have been fawning, swooning, and amazing. I paid about $2500 below the retail price with options. Two dealers plan to charge more than $4000 above MSRP, so I walked. Another wanted two hours to make an offer on my 2008 Rogue trade-in with 14,000 miles, so I walked. I now have a very patriotric feeling about this vehicle and helping the USA out of the recession.

    Posted by Peter April 1, 09 10:04 PM
  1. I don't understand how the $3400 rebate gets reduced on Apr 1 when the car is not even in the showrooms yet?!? That makes no sense.

    Posted by Tom April 2, 09 04:20 PM
  1. I bought my Fusion today at $500 below MSRP without a dealer fee. My other local dealership wanted $3000 over sticker, or $1500 over to order one. My tax credit will be $1,700.

    This is my first Ford in 15 years. I didn't need a new vehicle, but wanted to buy American and enjoy the fuel-saving and '"infotainment" features.

    Posted by Ormond April 7, 09 04:23 PM
  1. I bought a Ford Fusion Hybrid on May 4th. The ride is smooth , solid and quiet, compare to my previous vehicle, a 2003 Jetta Wagon TDI. I drove it for 2 weeks before filling it up. I use the car mainly in city driving and lower speed highways, so I do get more use of the EV system.
    Learning to drive more efficiently is easy with the aid of the gauges. I know it is early, but I am very impressed with this car.

    Posted by cbislander May 25, 09 08:49 PM
  1. RE: 2010 Fusion Hybrid - Contrary to what the EPA MPG ratings state I am consistently getting significantly better miles per gallon both city and highway.

    The very first partial tank of gas my combined average was 40.3 MPG I currently have close to 1300 miles on the car now after close to a week and my last 169 mile trip (mostly highway) the trip computer stated my trip MPG as 48.9MPG. Even being a bigger and heavier car it has already bested the my previous Civic Hybrid for regular driving and not drafting or leaving the windows up and A/C off.

    FYI - The Civic had difficulty exceeding 42MPG till it was broken in with close to 10K miles on it. The best MPG I ever achieved with my Civic Hybrid was while drafting a Semi and holding dead on 55MPH. I achieved 63 MPG. With windows up and A/C off.

    I just traded my 2008 Civic Hybrid off on the Fusion Hybrid last week and admit I was a little concerned about the EPA MPG rating compared to the Civic's. Even if the EPA rating had been accurate for the Fusion Hybrid I was willing to live with that for sake of not feeling so cramped in the car and also much easier to get out of. The Civic I always felt like I was getting out of a Go-Cart. Not the case with the Fusion. Had the Fusion been available when I bought my Civic it definitely would have been the Fusion that was purchased not the Civic.

    FYI - I've owned many cars and generally keep them for quite a while. Exception taken with the Civic. Traded it off after about 18-months of buying it new and logging 36K miles on it. Certainly there was a price kick on the Fusion but well worth the cost. I typically average 20-30K miles per year. Truth is I wasn't even seriously looking for a car to replace my Civic but did need a replacement truck for my Dodge 2500 Diesel with 250,000K miles. Ended up buying a used 2005 F150 Super Crew from a local Ford dealer. Long and short checked out the Fusion Hybrid and fell for it. Ironically ended up buying the Fusion from a different Ford dealer do to dealer allocation issues and availability.

    Haven't owned a Ford since my 1993 Eddie Bauer (Full Size) Bronco. No regrets with my new purchases. Ford has come a long way!!

    Honda Civic Hybrid Warning - Before I traded my Civic Hybrid off.. Honda had replaced 8-tires on the car within the original 36K factory warranty. There is a known problem that Honda had thought they had resolved but turns out that they haven't. My Civic had a so called revised suspension via Honda to resolve the excessive tire wear. It did not.. and last attempt to get resolution with Honda thru the dealer was.. Per dealer: Honda has advised us they are aware that there are a limited number of 2008 Civic Hybrid's with excessive tire wear issues. Honda has advised dealers that no fix is currently available and that no future tire replacements will be done and are the sole responsibility of customers. Pretty crappy attitude that Honda expects customers to replace tires every 10-12K miles.

    Posted by Jerry from Illinois July 17, 09 07:04 PM
  1. I've had my 2010 Ford Fusion Hybid almost a month. During this time it provided 717 miles on my first tank of gas. The AC was use approximately 50% of the time (during the afternoon while returning home) and highway driving, to check on my 94 yo father who lives in a nearby town.The computer read 40.8 mpg while the calculated mpg (toped off tank vs odometer) calculated out to be 40.995 mpg. Since that time my mileage on this second tank is avg. 40.5 mpg. My 16.4 mi am trip to work ranges from 46 to 50 mpg. The afternoon trip with the highway miles, AC most of the time varies significantly because of traffic conditions, yet, that mileage is in the low forties now that I getting a bit better gauging traffic situations etc. This coming weekend I will be testing the vehicle on its first almost all highway trip of approximately 700 mi. I should be able to determine whether the rated 36 mpg/gal is accurate or not for the way I drive. As for the city mileage, my driving route at speeds of 45 mph and below, mid-40s appears to be realistic without hypermiling and irritating everyone around me. I've found that the best way to maximize mileage is to monitor the mpg monitor and not the EV monitor. Ford seems to have done their homework of how the electric-gas motors can best be utilized by the typical driver. Attempting to force the vehile to operate in the EV just dosen't work for me. Oh by the way, performance when required is surpisingly good (dependable when you need it for merging on to the interstate) while comfort is decent.

    One last thing, while cost of fuel is important to me, I'm more concerned of the availability of fuel. I originally planned to replace my daily driver, a Lincoln Continental, in two years because of its high mileage and age (it would have been 13 yo with about 200 k). Had that not been the situation, I would not buy a car just to have the latest technology, I ran the numbers to determined the breakeven point like many others done. However, I still have my wife's high performance luxury car when I feel the need and the hybrid has educated me on how to get 25.5 miles per gallon with four people, AC, luggage and and highway driving on a 560 mi trip this past 3-day weeked trip.

    Posted by Roger Bredehoft August 31, 09 10:21 AM

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