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Ford Fusion Hybrid Delivering > 43 mpg US in City Test Drives

As part of its launch activities for the new Fusion and Fusion Hybrid (earlier post), Ford hosted a media drive mileage challenge for the hybrid this week in Los Angeles, inviting a number of media outlets to see who could deliver the best fuel economy results in a route from Beverly Hills to Hollywood.

Full drive reports will be published by the various outlets later this week, but initial reported results from the city cycle mileage challenge indicate fuel economy of better than 43 mpg US (less than 5.47 L/100km) for the Fusion Hybrid.

So far AutoblogGreen has reported 43.1 mpg; Car and Driver, 43.6 mpg; and Jalopnik, 43.8 mpg US.

Although the EPA fuel economy ratings are not in yet, Ford says that the Fusion Hybrid is capable of 39 mpg US in the city cycle. The Toyota Camry Hybrid, Ford’s competitive target, carries an EPA city cycle fuel economy rating of 33 mpg US.

(A hat-tip to Tom!)

Comments

HarveyD

Good show for Ford's second hybrid application.

However, it is unfair to compare a Fusion 2010 hybrid with an older Camry 2008/09 hybrid.

A better comparision would be a Ford Fusion Hybrid 2010 against a Camry Hybrid 2010 (to come to the market in 3 to 6 months).

The 6 mpg advantage claimed by Ford may very well melt to less than 1 mpg or to zero.

The 2010 Nissan Altima hybrid may also match Ford's Fusion.

Will Honda do as much (or better) with its new 2010 mid-size Hybrid?

Since the first 3 hybrids are almost identical in technology (i.e. Toyota's), size, performance, fuel consumption and prize; the choice will have to be made on quality and other personnal preferences.

It is very interesting to see 40+ mpg mid-size cars on the market.

Should CAFE be updated soon?

ACAGal

I've never owned a Ford, but I think I will look at this one, next time I'm shopping.

You can always count on Harvey to withhold credit from an American effort. It must be something in the water he drinks.

HarveyD

Annon:

Our last four Big-3 vehicles went sour (like lemons) after very few years and low mileage.

That's why we switched to Toyotas and stayed with that brand (and a Nissan Maxima) for the last 15-20 years. My wife will not move away from Toyotas. She had very bad experiences with the last two Fords.

The Big-3 car I appreciated the most was a Buick Sabre. The worst was a huge Chrysler 400. The best all around car we used was a very solid reliable, decent size Nissan Maxima.

We want to buy at least one PHEV in 2010. It may be a Volt, Honda, Fusion and most probably a Camry or Prius if they are available. We don't mind paying an extra $3k or $4K for better quality.

arnold

I agree that this seems a credible effort from Ford and know that there some new hybrids coming to market that seem substantially under this benchmark.
I too would like to see hybrids generally achieving about 20% better than we do.
I don't think this is unrealistic when we consider the efficiency figures for some non hybrid efficiency engines already reaching the market.

That said no one ever starts out at the top and one must be realistic at the early stages of large changes.

Time may find a loyal following for these if they warrant.

.

OK, it gets the same city mileage as my 30 year old, diesel, VW Rabbit that cost me $2000. Lets try thinking about solutions!

.

Nate H.

It is a decent effort on Ford's part. Trick is, how many are they going to make? 500 a month? 600? What does that do for anyone?

Nate H.
Dover, Ohio

CleanCarTalk

I think a city cycle mileage challenge is a great way to help promote public education and acceptance of the new, cleaner generation of cars. We should have more of these done around the country to help with public awareness.

This marketing concept is an all-around win-win-win for interested parties involved. For the media, it allows them to really write about what matters: the new technology and how they are actually performing as used in everyday life. For the manufacturers, it allows them an true and unbiased avenue to showcase and market their new products, while keeping them honest at the same time. And for the consumers, it allows us to see real performance comparison in real life driving cycles without all the marketing fluff and chatter.

For me, and I guess for a lot of people, it's hard enough to research and purchase a conventional car. With these new hybrids and alternative fuel vehicles becoming available, a challenge like this would definitely help.

JamesEE

Good point, Nate. Up until now there haven't been enough hybrid model choices, and most of the time availability has been poor. In a couple of years there will be more model choices, but will you be able to actually buy the new models?

Harvey, instead of updating CAFE, which does nothing to change purchasing decisions or driving behavior, we need to increase the gas tax. I'm hoping Obama will move in that direction. He recently said something to the effect that it's not a good idea right now, so he didn't rule it out for the future. He needs to save his political capital for other battles.

If congress forces Detroit to make high-mileage cars and then allows/encourages low fuel prices they'll kill the US auto industry for sure. With gas prices below $2/gal I'll be watching how truck & SUV sales trend vs hybrids.

Angelo

"OK, it gets the same city mileage as my 30 year old, diesel, VW Rabbit that cost me $2000. Lets try thinking about solutions!"

As if mpg was the only issue. I have an idea for you to try. Park a 2010 Fusion Hybrid in a garage, start the car, and measure how long you can tolerate being in that garage. Next, try the same procedure with your Rabbit.

I am continually amazed by some of the comments on this site. How do you think that Rabbit does in a side impact crash test? Yeah, I'd say there have been a few improvements here and there!

Kit P

“OK, it gets the same city mileage as my 30 year old, diesel, VW Rabbit that cost me $2000. Lets try thinking about solutions!”

How about a new VW TDI running on used French fry oil?

joooooooookes

Harvey,

It's not 1980, 1995, or even 2000...the Big 2 are building very different cars now in quality terms, often besting many/most of your beloved imports. The cars that do not are mostly relics of the past, such as the Ranger, Cobalt, etc., that were not developed under the current quality programs.

To extrapolate your experience to millions of cars is short-sighted, as the quality of cars does not just depend on the company, but many other sub-factors which make particular plants often stand-outs in quality. Toyota has had brand new Tundras blow engines and axles, Prius' slide backwards down hills when the traction control and hybrid system couldn't cooperate, and Nissan perenially gets trumped by some or all of Detroit in quality ratings (which you clearly don't bother to look at), so you got lucky there I guess? (No disrespect to Nissan [/Renault], but their recent offerings' strong points lie elsewhere than quality, both measurably and noticeably)

I don't cut them any breaks, I personally believe Chrysler is dead, GM probably needs Chapter 11, and Ford will likely need a bailout too. I've built 3 (three) EVs myself - but its getting old. (I used domestic parts, and they were 100% reliable...does that change your perception of domestic cars? lol) Its great to know you'll blindly pay $3-4K for a quality gap that scarcely exists anymore in products which don't exist yet either. Many others will choose not to - and your pie-in-the-sky EV predictions will not materialize nearly as fast as you continually claim on the boards.

joooooooookes

I would note that he is a different poster than the original Anon as well

jooooooooooooooooooooooooookes

I'm a different poster from Anon I meant.

HarveyD

joooooooooookes

We have a Ford and a Chrysler garage down the street and almost nobody even bothers to stop to look anymore. Discounts, up to $15K, don't seem to help enough.


The local Toyota and Honda garages are still doing OK. The Nissan Versa and Altima are selling well.

I'm not alone paying a bit more for better quality and reliability.

Look at the sale figures for the last 12 months.

Chevy's new Malibu and Ford's Fusion may be welcomed exceptions but they are not selling well around here.

Facts are difficlt to disclaim.

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