A bit of background to give you context on why my family chose a Ford Certified Pre-Owned Ford Fusion Energi Titanium plug-in hybrid sedan. We had been researching a replacement for my wife’s well-loved car from graduate school for three years. Our search included a wide range of vehicle types, sizes, and brands. Our main criteria in no particular order were safety, value, reliability, low cost of ownership, good fuel mileage, 87 octane (regular) fuel, comfort, style, and technology. Our wide range of criteria combined with a market with tons of great choices made our decision-making process arduous and slow. In fact, our car buying journey began more than 3 years ago. So why did the Ford Fusion Energi Titanium make it to the top of our list? I’ll give you five good reasons why the Ford Fusion Energi Titanium may be the right car for you and also share some of the lessons learned in our car buying journey.
If you’re in the market for a plug-in hybrid vehicle, you may have already explored the choices available to you. The selections for a midsize plug-in hybrid sedan are pretty limited. Other plug-in hybrid sedan on the market include the Honda Clarity, Hyundai Sonata, Kia Optima, Cadillac CT6 and maybe some others that didn’t hit our radar. For various reasons, each of these cars didn’t make our list, but maybe they’re right for you.
Five Reasons Why We Chose the Ford Fusion Energi Titanium
20+ Miles of Gasoline Driving Per Charge
I don’t get it when people proclaim “gasoline is cheap;” it isn’t. Gas is not cheap in America and it certainly isn’t in California. $3.50 for a gallon of 87 octane gasoline adds up to a big monthly bill with the generous amount of driving us Californians need to do every day. So for my family, fuel efficiency was a factor. We want the fuel efficiency benefits of say a Toyota Prius Plug-In, but wanted something less common and with more standard styling. We’d have loved a Tesla Model S or X P100D, but those cars are way out of our transportation budget. We knew that a plug-in hybrid would offer us the efficiency we desired, but choices in this category of vehicles were limited to a narrow range of cars.
A plug-in hybrid is similar to a regular hybrid but with the help of a larger battery and a plug you can charge the car from your own power outlet or a public charger and drive a certain amount of miles without using any gasoline. In the case of the Ford Fusion Energi you can expect around 20 miles of range on a charge. Your actual range will vary based on your personal driving style, temperature, traffic and use of accessories. I regularly see that I can drive 25 miles or more on a charge based on my driving habits, though some people experience fewer.
For my family this electric driving range means that my wife can potentially drive to and from work each week without using much if any gasoline. She can charge the car at work for a low-cost battery refill each day.
While 20 miles of an electric range may not sound like much, it is the ideal amount for many commuters, including us. When the battery runs down to a certain level, the car operates just as it would if it were a regular hybrid. Unlike a pure electric vehicle, range anxiety isn’t a factor. A full tank of fuel and a full charge will get you way more than 550 miles of range.
Full of Modern Safety and Technology
Do yourself a favor, don’t ever drive a Tesla Model S with all of the technological accouterments. I am kidding, the Tesla Model S is a marvel of technology and an amazing vehicle on so many levels, but if you do drive one you will be spoiled. The Ford Fusion Energi Titanium isn’t a Tesla Model S, but it also doesn’t come with a Tesla Model S price tag. The Ford Fusion Model S doesn’t boast features like autonomous driving, but it does offer driver assisting features like lane departure warning and correction, adaptive cruise control, forward collision avoidance and rear camera and parking assist.
The infotainment system on the Ford Fusion Energi Titanium is great. I’ll explain later why it isn’t perfect, but there’s plenty of great things that you should know. Ours features the Ford Sync 2 with MyTouch. Through the large touchscreen you can access most of the car’s features and functions. Many of the car’s features are highly customizable.
Ever heard of Belt Bags? I’m not talking about fanny packs here. Belt Bags are airbags built into seat belts. This is a Ford innovation that has made it into a few other brands as well. I had no idea what they were until we saw them in a few of the Ford Fusions Energi models we drove. Basically it works like a regular airbag and is deployed in certain collision types. The idea of the Belt Bag is that it distributes the force of a seat belt across a larger area, reducing the risk of injury a regular seat belt could cause in a wreck. The outboard seats in the back of the car have these added safety features.
These features may be more common on luxury brand vehicles, but Ford’s thoughtful product managers and engineers packed all of these goodies into a car that is within reach of most budgets.
Value for the Money
Priced new, even with incentives the Ford Fusion Energi Titanium is a fair value. However, if you scan the market you can sometimes find gently Fusions on the market for a huge discount from their sticker price. Dollar for dollar we found it hard to not consider the Ford Fusion Titanium Energi. Feature for feature we felt the Ford Fusion Energi Titanium compares to a comparably priced Lexus ES Hybrid, but with the added benefit of plug-in technology.
I cannot speak for the SE trim, but ours in Titanium trim has nearly all of the modern convenience and safety features you would expect in a luxury car. I’m not implying that the Ford Fusion Energi is a luxury car, but respected auto journalists have compared the Ford Fusion Energi to Lexus. We keep discovering features in our Ford Fusion Energi such as the 110v electrical outlet in the center console for the rear seat passengers. You can tell that Ford did their research when they engineered this car to compete in a crowded market segment. I challenge you to scan the market and see just how much more you get for your money with the Ford Fusion Energi over almost any other car in its class.
Way Nicer Than What Many Expect a Ford to Be
I’ve owned a few Fords in my 2.5 decades of driving and I’ve never expected much from them other than affordable, basic transportation. I was surprised when I sat in the Ford Fusion Energi Titanium. The interior is handsome. The quality of the materials used on the interior are good. Even after a few years on the market, the interior of the Ford Fusion Energi holds up to well to cars debuting in 2018. The ride is tight and sporty, and even on the low resistance tires that are optimized for fuel economy over handling, the car holds its own on a tight turn. Power is adequate and on par with many imports. I’ve seen the Lincoln MKZ and while it is arguably more luxuriously designed, the Ford Fusion Energi Titanium is equally attractive.
California HOV Access
California has notoriously bad traffic. Our traffic is so bad that HOV lanes are a necessity if you want to keep your commute manageable. Ours came equippd with green HOV decals already applied to the bumpers. For those in the know, these stickers are like gold to a commuter as you can drive solo in HOV lanes.