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The 2017 Ford Fusion Sport, a powerful standout sedan

March 13,2017 23:32

The Sport model also has large and stylish 19-inch wheels that fit the character of a sportier ride. These are painted darker and look nice with the ruby red paint, and it helps it to stand out in a crowd more than other Fusion models. Looking at the ...



By

Mike Parris

March 13, 2017 4:40 am
03/13/2017 04:40am

Think driving a midsize sedan has to slow you down? The 2017 Ford Fusion Sport will change your mind.

WASHINGTON — Think driving a midsize sedan has to slow you down? The 2017 Ford Fusion Sport will change your mind.
Midsize sedans are awash with four-cylinder engines, some with turbochargers and few V-6’s, but most are driven from point A to point B without using much gas or adding much fun to life. Ford’s Fusion used to fit that mold with an ecoboost 2.0L, four-cylinder engine as the top-of-the-line mode until this year. While that engine of the past was really decent, coming in at 245-horsepower, it wasn’t the most powerful in the class. Ford stirs it up for 2017.
The Fusion Sport starts around $34,000, and fully loaded, the car is priced at around $41,500 — a premium for fast and sporty — but nothing insane.
One way to spice up your midsize sedan is to add power, so Ford obliged by adding V-6. This one is a twin-turbo V-6 with 325 horsepower and 380 lbs. of torque, so it really moves. I’ve driven several Fusions over the years, but this one is a whole new ballgame with how quick it is. The Sport model has AWD, and it needs it to help funnel all that power to all the wheels. The ride is still very good for everyday use, but you do feel a few more bumps in part with the large 19-inch wheels with those low profile tires.

Handling is pretty good for a midsize sedan. The AWD helps keep the sedan planted, but the heavier V-6 is noticed in tighter corners, though more power fixes it. The six-speed automatic does fine coping with that power, and is quick when needed or more relaxed in normal driving. The fuel economy is 17 mpg/city and 26 mpg/highway. I managed 22.2 mpg which is pretty good, considering that power.
For 2017, the Fusion also gets some updates in the styling department. It’s not a huge redesign, but the front end has been redone offering a bit of a new look. The headlights are new and look more modern and smaller than before. The grill has grown bigger and bolder, but you have to study the 2016 and 2017 models for a second to notice the difference. The Sport model also has large and stylish 19-inch wheels that fit the character of a sportier ride. These are painted darker and look nice with the ruby red paint, and it helps it to stand out in a crowd more than other Fusion models. Looking at the side view, this Fusion Sport seems like it’s riding lower than other trim levels, and the minimal use of chrome-colored trim is fitting with the attitude. The rear-end styling is more aggressive as well, with a trunk-mounted spoiler and quad exhaust pipes sticking out of the bumper.
The inside of the Fusion also has some updates, like a rotary knob for the transmission, which really frees up some space inside. The differences are the sport seats, which are covered in leather and suede. They look racy without being hard and stiff. There are 10-way power adjustments for the driver, and the pedals are finished in aluminum. Of course, there are paddle shifters as well. The space is good for the class with a lot of room up front. The rear seats have ample leg room, but the slopping rear means taller riders might not have the most headroom.
A big step up for the 2017 is the new Sync 3 over the Ford MyTouch. The new system is easier to use and it reacts better to your touch on the screen. It mostly understood my voice commands. Plus, it has all the safety features you want, like Adaptive Cruise Control, Lane Keep Assist and Blind Spot Monitor.
The 2017 Ford Fusion Sport is a standout in the midsize sedan market, with a lot of power and AWD to help keep you on the road. It also has the space and features you want without you having to break the bank to buy it. I can see enthusiasts telling their significant other that there’s a new family sedan to look at. I know what you’re doing. Well played.
Mike Parris is a member of the Washington Automotive Press Association. The vehicles are provided by STI, FMI or Event Solutions for the purpose of this review.
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