Seat Time: 2017 Ford Fusion Sport – A Nice Surprise

October 12th, 2016 at 12:44pm

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Seat Time is a chance for us to share our impressions of vehicles being tested in the Autoline Garage and at media previews from around the globe.

Reviewer: Sean McElroy
Vehicle: 2017 Ford Fusion Sport
Price: $40,995 (as tested & including destination)

Final Impression:

Ford is carving out a nice little niche for itself with its Sport models. Explorer sales were up over 20% between 2013 and 2015, but the Explorer Sport jumped 103% and during that same time the Edge Sport was up 62%. Now Ford is unleashing the all-new Fusion Sport. For some mainstream models a sport variant might be nothing more than bigger wheels, chrome exhaust tips and a couple of interior enhancements. But improvements to the Fusion Sport are more than cosmetic.

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At its heart is a 2.7L twin-turbocharged V6 – all other Fusion models come with a 4-cylinder – that pumps out 325-horsepower and 380 lb.-ft. of torque. For better ride and handling, the Fusion Sport comes standard with all-wheel drive and computer-controlled shock absorbers. By tapping the “Sport Mode” button, which is located in the middle of a Fusion Sport-exclusive rotary shift knob, drivers can change the car’s suspension from “normal” to “sport.” Another added feature of these dampers is the ability to reduce harsh impacts with potholes. The system is able to detect when a wheel is falling off the leading edge of a pothole and slow down the rate at which the shock extends, not allowing the wheel to fall all the way down into the hole. It then relays that information to the rear shocks, so they’re ready for the pothole too.

While those are the major enhancements to the guts of the Fusion Sport, there are some cosmetic treatments that are unique to the car as well. The front fascia and headlights have been slightly reworked, it gets dark-colored 19″ wheels, quad chrome exhaust tips and dark grey leather seats with microfiber/suede inserts. Add it all up and the folks at Ford think they have a real winner on their hands that customers are going to love. You know what? I kind of agree with them. The Fusion Sport delivered exactly what I was expecting and then some.

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I knew the car wasn’t going to win any Sports Car of the Year awards, but would still be fun to thrash around in. I wish power came on a little quicker from a standstill, remember it’s a rather big and heavy AWD sedan that’s turbocharged, but overall power was more than adequate and easy to control. Sling the car into a corner and you still feel like you’re in a big sedan, but it was not all that bad and a definite step up from the base car. But now let’s get to that “and then some” portion of what the Fusion Sport delivered. The exhaust note from inside the car is really good. And while noise cancellation technology does enhance engine sound in “Sport Mode,” it’s still pretty darn good out of “Sport Mode” and has the nice baritone note of a good V6 engine. It was also surprising just how quite the Fusion Sport is. With an acoustic windshield and front side glass and the previously mentioned noise cancellation technology, the car easily blocks out road noise. It’s easily as quiet as cars that cost twice as much and maybe even more. And speaking of, the 2017 Fusion Sport is on sale now with a starting price of just under $33,500. A decked-out version will run just under $41-grand.

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2 Comments to “Seat Time: 2017 Ford Fusion Sport – A Nice Surprise”

  1. Bradley Says:

    I think you mean quiet instead of quite :)

  2. Sean McElroy Says:

    @Bradley – Sure did. Thanks for pointing that out. Mistake fixed.