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2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid

$28,000 - $34,595
Price Range (MSRP)
Ford Fusion Hybrid

2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Review: Electrified Mediocrity

by Roger Biermann

In a world obsessed with pursuing electrification, every manufacturer now makes a point of having hybrid offerings in their most popular sales segments. For Ford, despite its intentions of cutting out production of cars in favor of crossovers, that means the third-generation Ford Fusion gets a pair of hybrid siblings, one standard and one plug-in. It's the former we look at here, as it makes the least compromise and makes the easiest day to day hybrid companion of the two. Powered by the combination of a 2.0-liter gasoline four-cylinder and an electric motor, the Fusion Hybrid develops 188 combined horsepower while sending it to the front wheels via a continuously variable automatic transmission. But against newer, class-leading rivals like the Honda Accord Hybrid and Toyota Camry Hybrid, and with the likes of the Kia Optima Hybrid to compete with, does Ford's mid-size hybrid sedan really bring much to the table, or is it destined to occupy the halls of mediocrity until its dying day?

2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Changes: What’s the difference vs 2019 Fusion Hybrid?

For 2020, the Ford Fusion Hybrid continues unchanged, only losing some front seat adjustability that we presume Ford felt was unnecessary. Otherwise, the hybridized family sedan soldiers on as is.

Pros and Cons

  • Impressively capable handling
  • Posh interior impression
  • User-friendly SYNC 3 infotainment system
  • Comfortably quiet at highway speeds
  • Excellent safety ratings
  • Not as fuel-efficient as rival hybrids
  • Lackluster highway acceleration
  • Subpar trunk capacity
  • Compromised rear headroom and visibility

Fusion Hybrid Exterior

The Ford Fusion looks like the typical midsize sedan: it carries a long front overhang, a four-door cabin, and a short rear end. 17-inch Sparkle Silver-painted aluminum wheels adorn the SE and SEL while 18-inch premium-painted alloy wheels befit the Titanium. LED headlights are only available from the SEL trim and up along with LED signature lighting, while all models feature LED taillights. All models feature a single exhaust tip and body-color bumpers and door handles, but SEL and Titanium models get chrome inserts for the handles. The Titanium further separates itself visually with a chrome mesh grille and a rear decklid spoiler, with lesser trims receiving a more traditional five-bar grille design.

2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Front View Driving
2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Rear View Driving
2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Top View
See All 2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Exterior Photos

Dimensions

The Hybrid variation of the Fusion measures almost identically to the gasoline variant, with only the height and curb weights differing. Both variants measure the same 191.8 inches in length and 72.9 inches wide excluding the mirrors. The only difference between it and the gas version is in height and weight; while the hybrid measures 58 inches, the gasoline model measures 0.2 inches taller. A curb-weight of 3,668 lbs is shared across the Hybrid lineup, which is around 200 lbs heavier than the gasoline variant, with its 3,472-pound figure.

2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Exterior Colors

  • Alto Blue Metallic Tinted Clearcoat
  • Rapid Red Metallic Tinted Clearcoat
  • White Platinum Metallic Tri-Coat
  • Magnetic Metallic
  • Iconic Silver Metallic
  • Agate Black Metallic
  • Oxford White
  • Velocity Blue Metallic

Fusion Hybrid Performance

2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Front View Driving
2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Front View Driving
2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Badge

Engine and Transmission

The Fusion Hybrid's 2.0-liter inline-four Atkinson cycle engine developing 141 hp and 129 lb-ft of torque is augmented by an 88 kW electric motor to generate peak combined outputs of 188 hp. These outputs are dealt solely to the front wheels via a continuously variable automatic transmission, a standard among hybrids. Accelerating from a standstill to 60 mph takes a casual nine seconds, which - though average for the class - is roasted by the Toyota Camry's 7.5-second 0-60 mph sprint. The electrified torque nevertheless makes for solid off-the-line acceleration; the go-pedal does require some heavy-footed input to get the hybrid on the move, whether pulling away from a stop or overtaking at speed. But as a whole, the Fusion Hybrid is easy to drive around the low to mid-speed range. The CVT feels well suited to the powertrain too - it's nothing special, but is as seamless as it should be. Avoid high-speed jaunts on the highway, though, as the powertrain struggles at higher speeds.

  • Engine
    2.0-liter Inline-4 Hybrid
  • Transmission
    Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
  • Drivetrain
    FWD

Handling and Driving Impressions

The Fusion Hybrid is a very placid vehicle overall; though its powertrain is competent for the family commuter. In terms of handling, the Fusion Hybrid is a breeze to maneuver around town and through winding roads. Its steering isn't very communicative of road feel and tire feedback, but the effort is appropriately light at any rate. The Fusion turns in quickly, losing nothing over its combustion counterpart, despite the skinnier, eco-focused tires.

Where the midsize sedan really impresses is around bends, exhibiting minimal body roll throughout, and though equipped with efficiency-minded tires, is also firmly-planted to the asphalt. While the Hybrid's standard suspension suitably absorbs most imperfections and typical undulations, some may find its tuning to be overly soft, as the ride can feel nauseatingly floaty on occasion, especially through dips and undulations.

Fusion Hybrid Gas Mileage

With EPA estimates of 43/41/42 mpg, the Fusion Hybrid seems impressively economical - at least when compared to the average gasoline-powered vehicle. Compared to rival hybrids, however, it's pretty subpar; both the Honda Insight and Toyota Camry hybrids return combined estimates of 52 mpg. Equipped with a 14-gallon gas tank, the Fusion Hybrid is availed with a maximum range of 588 miles on a full tank. It takes regular unleaded fuel as recommended, and is mated to a 1.4 kWh battery pack which auto-charges via the Hybrid's regenerative braking system.

  • Fuel Tank Capacity
    14.0 Gallons
  • Fuel Economy
    City/Hwy: 43/41 mpg
* 2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid SE FWD

Fusion Hybrid Interior

2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Dashboard
2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Gauge Cluster
2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Gauge Cluster
See All 2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Interior Photos

Seating and Interior Space

There is seating for five in the Fusion Hybrid, though only a small child will find any level of comfort in the center rear seat. While the passenger room overall is great, the headroom in the rear is somewhat compromised because of the Fusion's rearward sloping roofline, which could prove problematic for taller occupants. The seats are otherwise suitably comfortable, supportive, and spacious (barring the center rear seat, of course), with the front seats featuring ample adjustability. Locating a suitable driving position is effortless, and other than for the sloping roofline impeding on the rear view, visibility everywhere else is good. Fortunately, the Fusion comes standard with a rearview camera and rear parking sensors to help mitigate this problem.

  • Seating capacity
    5-seater

Fusion Hybrid Trunk and Cargo Space

With the Fusion Hybrid featuring a battery pack on board, instead of the 16 cubic feet of trunk room the gasoline Fusion offers, it offers a mere 12 cubes instead. That's only really enough room for a couple of school bags and duffels, and perhaps your briefcase and a small shopping bag. The rear seats do, however, still fold in a 60/40 split, which expands room and versatility, but with a large step nearing the rear of the trunk, a result of awkward battery packaging, storage versatility is still compromised.

As for in-cabin stowage, there are dual cupholders in the front and rear, door side pockets on all doors that don't hold bottles, a moderately sized center console cubby, and a typically sized passenger-side glove box.

2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Rear Passenger Seats
2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Interior Overview
2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Rear Angle View
  • Trunk Volume
    12 ft³

Fusion Hybrid Infotainment and Features

Features

The 2020 year model of the Fusion Hybrid comes relatively feature-rich, with the standard consignment including push-button start, a tilt and telescoping steering wheel, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a ten-way power-adjustable driver's seat, a compass, active noise control, and dual-zone automatic climate control. From the SEL model, there's also intelligent access with a remote start system, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, heated front seats, a universal garage door opener, and power heated exterior mirrors. The top-of-the-line Titanium shows off with standard features such as a heated steering wheel, heated and ventilated front seats, ambient interior lighting, and a power-operated moonroof. All models come with a selection of active safety features and driver assists under the Ford Co-Pilot360 banner, including forward collision warning, forward automatic emergency braking, lane keep assist, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and automatic high-beams. Also standard are rain-sensing windshield wipers, a rearview camera, and adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go capability.

Infotainment

Ford's latest and greatest SYNC 3 infotainment system software is featured in every Fusion Hybrid model. Its a highly responsive and user-friendly system that comprises functionality in Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. It also features Bluetooth connectivity, voice-activated navigation, SiriusXM radio, Live Traffic, and Travel Link, as well as FordPass Connect. An eight-inch LCD touchscreen is also standard across the lineup, tethered to an AM/FM stereo with CD-player and MP3 capability, and a stock nine-speaker audio layout in the SE, a premium 11-speaker system in the SEL, and a Sony 12-speaker setup with HD Radio technology in the Titanium. All models only come with two USB ports for device charging and connectivity, and while the infotainment setup is appealing in general, the Sony audio system isn't the greatest quality, especially when cranked up.

Fusion Hybrid Problems and Reliability

The 2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid has not been affected by any recalls at the time of writing, and though the model is still fresh on the market, expectations for its reliability are high as the last major recall commissioned for the hybrid was for the 2015 year model. J.D. Power agrees, giving the 2020 model year an above-average predicted reliability rating of three and a half out of five. Every new Fusion Hybrid is covered by a three-year/36,000-mile limited warranty and a five-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty. Ford also covers the hybrid components with an eight-year/100,000-mile warranty.

Fusion Hybrid Safety

From the NHTSA, the Fusion received an overall safety rating of five out of five stars. The IIHS has only evaluated the 2019 year model of the standard Ford Fusion, which shares the same basic platform, and it was accorded with top ratings of Good for six specific evaluations. Ford's Co-Pilot360 suite of driver aids comes standard with the Fusion, comprising forward collision warning, forward automatic emergency braking, lane keep assist, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, a rearview camera, and automatic high-beam headlights. This complements the standard eight airbags including both driver and front passenger knee airbags.

Verdict: Is 2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid a good car?

The Ford Fusion Hybrid offers all that one could want from an efficiency-optimized family sedan: good fuel economy, spacious passenger room, contemporary infotainment, comfortable ride quality, and high levels of safety. There's plenty of appeal in its SYNC 3 system and the standard inclusion of Android Auto and Apple CarPlay functionality - actually, from its standard tech overall - but that's about all the Fusion offers at a competitive level. Most of its rivals offer more of everything else at equal or even lower prices, specifically in fuel economy, practicality, and drivability. With the Fusion Hybrid's construction being based on the standard gasoline variant that wasn't conceptualized with electrification in mind, there are many compromises it has had to face through its transformation into hybridization, where its rivals were designed with electrification in mind from the outset. Nevertheless, the Fusion Hybrid is still a pleasurable sedan to drive, and one that is easy to live with on a daily basis - but consider your options before opting for the Fusion Hybrid, as there are many more appealing alternatives available in the hybrid market.

What's the Price of the 2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid?

The Fusion Hybrid SE is the lineup's entry-level trim, and it starts the selection off with a sticker price of $28,000. The Fusion Hybrid SEL takes up the position as the mid-tier trim of the lineup and is the well-equipped option available at an MSRP of $31,630. At the top of the lineup is the Fusion Hybrid Titanium, with a recommended selling price of $34,595. Those are all excluding Ford's $995 destination charge and $645 acquisition fee, as well as any tax, registration, or licensing fees. Though not very competitive, those prices are about average for the class, and dealer-specific incentives may also be available.

2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Models

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
Hybrid SE
2.0-liter Inline-4 Hybrid
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
$28,000
Hybrid SEL
2.0-liter Inline-4 Hybrid
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
$31,630
Hybrid Titanium
2.0-liter Inline-4 Hybrid
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
$34,595
See All 2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Trims and Specs

What Ford Fusion Hybrid Model Should I Buy?

Considering that there's basically only an advancement of luxury with each trim level, we suggest opting for the base Fusion SE model, which is already based on the mid-spec SE from the standard Fusion range. It is accorded with the same level of infotainment functionality with the SYNC 3 system and is outfitted with the same active safety and driver assists as the higher-level trims. It only falls short in the very luxury-focused vehicle elements. The SE is also priced favorably, well below the $30,000 mark, and though it doesn't have availability to the few luxury features found in the upper-level models, it fits the bill of a budget-friendly city runaround. There is an optional power-operated moonroof available for the SE, which can be considered with all the money one would save by opting for the base model.

Check out other Ford Fusion Styles?

2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid Comparisons

2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid
2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid

2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid vs Honda Insight

While the Insight is around $5,000 cheaper than the Fusion, it technically occupies the smaller compact segment and is stuck with a smaller 1.5-liter inline-four hybridized engine, with weaker outputs of 151 hp. Though a lot slower off-the-line and in general acceleration, the Insight is a whole lot more fuel-efficient than the Fusion, returning 55/49/52 mpg on the EPA drive cycles. It's also a lot more spacious in terms of passenger room and trunk capacity, offering three full cubic feet over the Fusion's meager 12. It received greater safety ratings as well, having been accorded with a Top Safety Pick+ allocation from the IIHS. With the Insight being designed as a hybrid vehicle from the outset, it's simply just a more successful concept, offering less compromise in practicality, and optimized performance in terms of fuel economy and ride quality. We'd go for the Insight, and so should you.

See Honda Insight Review

2020 Ford Fusion Hybrid vs Toyota Camry Hybrid

The Camry is priced similarly to the Fusion but comes equipped with a more powerful 208-hp, electrically augmented 2.5-liter inline-four engine. Not only is the Camry faster off-the-line, with a 0-60 mph sprint time of 7.5 seconds, but also considerably more fuel-efficient with EPA estimates of 51/53/52 mpg in its most efficient guise. The Camry appeals to more with its sportier aesthetic and is a whole lot more contemporary in design inside the cabin. And, in terms of performance, it offers a greater balance between handling capability that embarrasses the Fusion and a ride quality that outclasses it notably. Both offer about the same level of safety and related features, but the Fusion outranks the Camry in infotainment functionality. With the Camry Hybrid having undergone recent major updates and refinements, it is simply the better hybrid vehicle overall - and definitely the better buy for the money.

See Toyota Camry Hybrid Review

Ford Fusion Hybrid Popular Comparisons