The 2018 Ford Fusion comes without a dramatic change, and that’s a good thing. The Fusion is in a highly competitive class midsize sedan, but still impresses with its exceptional driving dynamics, user-friendly technology and comfortable interiors.
The 2018 Ford Fusion will not survive in this class if it is not for its high-quality interior and plenty of safety features available. Items such as automated parking system, adaptive cruise control and forward collision mitigation should definitely appeal to buyers, while Sync 3 excellent controls should satisfy tech enthusiasts.
The Fusion certainly has some drawbacks, but it’s mostly related to the basic version of the car and can be handled with some upgrades. For example, the base 2.5-liter engine does not have much power, but three available options offer improved efficiency and performance. While the 2018 Ford Fusion may look relatively same on the outside from last year, the rest of this midsize sedan is constantly being updated to ensure that it remains a top model in the class.
Trim levels and features
The 2018 Ford Fusion is a five-passenger, four-door midsize sedan sold in five trim levels: S, SE, Titanium, Platinum and V6 Sport. The hybrid and plug-in hybrid version (known as the Fusion Energi) are reviewed separately.
Standard equipment for the base Fusion S include 16-inch alloy wheels, automatic headlights, LED taillights, cruise control, a rearview camera, air-conditioning, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, a height-adjustable driver seat, cloth upholstery, 60/40-split folding rear seats, a 4.2-inch center screen, smartphone app integration, Bluetooth connectivity, audio and phone voice commands (Sync), a four-speaker sound system with a CD player, a USB port and an auxiliary audio jack.
The 2018 Ford Fusion SE trim adds exterior keypad entry, 17-inch wheels, LED daytime running lights, an eight-way power driver seat with power lumbar, a six-way power passenger seat, a rear center fold-down armrest, rear heat ducts and a six-speaker sound system with satellite radio.
The optional Appearance package for the S and SE include 18-inch alloy wheels, a rear spoiler, foglights, special cloth upholstery and a leather-wrapped steering wheel. Also available for the SE is a Luxury package (Equipment Group 202A), which adds the turbocharged 1.5-liter engine, remote ignition, keyless ignition and entry, LED foglights and headlights, an auto-dimming rearview mirror and driver-side mirror, heated mirrors, driver-seat memory settings, heated front seats and leather upholstery.
The SE Technology package gets you rear parking sensors, dual-zone automatic climate control, enhanced voice controls, an 11-speaker sound system, an additional USB charging port, the Sync 3 technology interface with two configurable gauge cluster displays and an 8-inch central LCD touchscreen.
The 2018 Ford Fusion Titanium include the SE optional features along with the turbocharged 2.0-liter engine, 18-inch wheels, a rear spoiler, LED taillights, sport front seats, ambient interior lighting, eight-way power adjustable passenger seat, HD radio and a premium 12-speaker Sony sound system.
The Fusion SE with the Technology package and Titanium can also be equipped with an automated parking system, a navigation system and adaptive cruise control with frontal collision warning and stop-and-go traffic capability. Ford additionally offers the Driver Assist package for the SE and Titanium, which adds blind-spot monitoring, automatic high-beam control, rear cross-traffic alert, automatic wipers, lane-keeping assist system, a lane departure warning, a heated steering wheel and a 110-volt power outlet. A sunroof is optional for both the SE and Titanium, and the Titanium can be equipped with 19-inch wheels and ventilated front seats.
The Platinum trim includes all of the above features plus a unique grille, a power-adjustable steering wheel and upgraded leather trim.
The 2018 Ford Fusion V6 Sport starts with features from the SE with the Luxury package plus a turbocharged V6 engine, 19-inch wheels, adjustable suspension dampers, a different grille, a rear spoiler, quad exhaust tips, a nine-speaker audio system, leather and simulated suede upholstery.
The V6 Sport Upgrade package (Equipment Group 401A) includes most of the features from the Titanium trim and also available with the Driver Assist package and the stand-alone options listed above.
The 2018 Ford Fusion S and SE is powered by a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 175 horsepower and 175 lb-ft of torque. A six-speed automatic transmission sent power to the front wheels. EPA estimated fuel economy stands at 25 mpg combined (21 city/32 highway), which is average for this class.
There are two additional engine options for the SE. The first is a 1.5-liter EcoBoost turbocharged four-cylinder that generates 181 hp and 185 lb-ft of torque. It’s matched with a six-speed automatic and includes paddle shifters and automatic engine stop-start to save fuel at stoplights. In performance testing, the Fusion SE 1.5l accelerates from zero to 60 mph in 9.1 seconds, which is slower than average for the segment. Fuel economy rating at 27 mpg combined (23 city/34 highway).
Also available on the SE but standard on the Titanium and Platinum is a 2.0-liter EcoBoost turbocharged four-cylinder good for 240 hp and 270 lb-ft of torque. Front-wheel drive and a six-speed automatic transmission are standard, while all-wheel drive available as an option. EPA fuel economy rating stands at 25 mpg combined (21 city/31 highway) for FWD and 23 mpg combined (20 city/29 highway) for AWD. In performance testing, the 2018 Ford Fusion Titanium AWD hit 60 mph in 6.9 seconds, which is slower than average for a midsize sedan with an upgraded engine.
The 2018 Ford Fusion V6 Sport gets a turbocharged 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 engine that crank out 325 hp and 380 lb-ft of torque. A six-speed transmission and all-wheel drive are standard. In performance testing, the Fusion V6 Sport went to 60 mph from zero in quick 5.1 seconds. EPA fuel economy at 20 mpg combined (17 city/26 highway).
Inside, the 2018 Ford Fusion cabin design reflects its exterior. There’s a cool and polished style to the seats and dash, a sense that is mostly tuned by the high build-quality and slick look made by the optional Sync 3 touchscreen system and a little physical button. In fact, the Fusion basic cabin is so nice that when slathered in rich leather, and the Platinum trim boasting the impression of a luxury car. Those who are considering paying extra for an Infiniti, Acura or Lincoln may have to consider the Fusion Platinum.
It is advisable to pick the Sync 3 system since the basic infotainment controls are somewhat awkward when compared to competitor systems. The Sync 3 is one of the best technology interfaces available in the market and much better than its predecessor the MyFord Touch interface. It’s more responsive to input, and its large virtual buttons are easy to press while moving. The optional navigation system offers pinch-to-zoom and swiping motions, which mimic the smartphone interface.
The 2018 Ford Fusion comfortable and supportive driver seats offer one of the best adjustment ranges in the class along with a good sight line on the front and side of the car. It’s hard to see through the sloping back window, so the standard rearview camera is helpful. The slope back roof also cuts the rear headroom, though not so much keeps making most of the rear passengers uncomfortable. The front seats are also mounted high enough off the floor so that the people at the back can at least partially stretch their legs under the front seat. Luggage space of 16 cubic feet, is about average for the midsize sedans.
Release dates and price
Offical price for the base Fusion S starts at $22,995 (including $875 destination charges). The Fusion SE costs $24,270 and the 1.5-liter Ecoboost can be had for just $400 more while the 2.0-liter Ecoboost engine is available for $2,890. The Titanium trim is priced at $31,270 and the Platinum costs $37,770. The range-topping Fusion Sport will set you back $34,625.