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2010 Ford Fusion  (Source: Ford)
Ford unveils "renewed" Fusion complete with new powertrain options

Ford's Fusion has been a moderate success for the company in the mid-size sedan category. While the Fusion doesn't have the sales numbers to put it toe-to-toe with the Toyota Camry, Honda Accord, and Nissan Altima, the vehicle is nonetheless a competent entry in one of the most fiercely contested auto segments in North America.

Now that the Fusion has been on the market for a few years, Ford is ready to give the vehicle a makeover. Stylistically, the vehicle received new front and rear fascias, although the only press shot provided by Ford is of the vehicle's dramatic new front.

The new front end styling seems to merge the current three-bar grill prominent with Ford's current North American styling theme with the more organic shapes found on the European market Mondeo, Ka, and Fiesta (as evidenced by the fog lamp shapes and lower air dam). The hood also features a prominent "power bulge" to accentuate the changes under hood.

When it comes to the powertrain, Ford is introducing a new 175 HP 2.5-liter inline-4 engine -- also available in the all-new Mazda6 and upcoming second generation Mazda3 -- which replaces the old 2.3 liter engine. Ford also massaged the 3.0-liter V6 to produce 240 HP (up 19HP from before). The engine is also capable of running on E85.

For those that crave even more power, the corporate 3.5-liter V6 engine is also available with 263 HP on tap. The 3.5-liter V6 is also used in the Ford Edge and Ford Flex crossovers.

All three of the above engines will be paired with a six-speed automatic transmission.

The most interesting news about the new Fusion, however, is that a new hybrid version of the vehicle is in the works. The new Fusion Hybrid will use the 2.5-liter inline-4 and a heavily revamped version of the hybrid system used in the current Ford Escape and Mercury Mariner. Ford managed to reduce the number of cells used in the battery pack by 20 percent while at the same time boosted the power output by each individual cell by 20 percent.

The new NiMH battery pack is now 30 percent smaller than the one featured in the Escape/Mariner Hybrids and weighs 23 percent less. The reduced dimensions and weight also means that the battery pack no longer requires its own A/C unit to stay cool which also saves weight.

Ford boosted the power generated by the electric motor from 70 kW to 93 kW, while generator output rose from 45 kW to 70 kW. As a result, the new Fusion Hybrid can now reach speed of up to 47 MPH on battery power alone -- this is up from 24 MPH on the Escape/Mariner Hybrids.

Best of all, the significant improvements to the hybrid powertrain will translate into big mileage gains for drivers. Ford says that the Fusion Hybrid will achieve 5 MPG better EPA ratings in the city than the Toyota Camry Hybrid (EPA rated 33 MPG city).

Ford has high hopes for its reinvigorated midsize offering, and the Fusion Hybrid most certainly will be leading its efforts.



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RE: Fugly
By theapparition on 11/3/2008 9:05:16 AM , Rating: 2
Nice try.
The new 6 speed Camaro will have the LS3 and is conservatively listed at 425+hp and even more importantly 400+ft-lbs. The automatic will have the L99 and 400hp engine.
While I'm definately disappointed at the weight, it will still boast a better power-weight ratio than the 370Z. Torque is key when talking about launches and the 370Z will NOT be competitive. In fact, it will get thoroughly destroyed in most tests. 370Z would have the edge in handling tests.

However, you're trying to compare 2 completely different animals. I don't think many potential buyers of either car would seriously consider the other one.

Personally, I'm not excited about the Camaro. Butt ass ugly (not a fan of either the Challenger/Charger or retro Mustang designs either), and the interior is undoubtedly the fugliest I've seen in a long time.

However, your comment about the GTO being an Opel is off base. It's a direct Holden Monaro with Pontiac "look at me cladding". Even though the styling is cavalier bland, it's a remarkably good handling car, is very comfortable to drive and live with, and has excellent performance. It also should not be confused as a sports car.......the GTO is more of a tourer and competed with similarly priced BMW's, just like the G8 (Holden Commodore) does now.


RE: Fugly
By Brandon Hill (blog) on 11/3/2008 9:16:33 AM , Rating: 4
The Camaro is lumped in the same category as the Mustang, 350Z/370Z, Mazda RX-8, and the upcoming Hyundai Genesis Coupe. They're the only two-door RWD coupes available in the $25,000 -- $30,000 price bracket.

My comment about the 370Z kicking the Camaro's ass was more aimed at the V6 version, but it should also be pretty competitive with the SS.

quote:
However, your comment about the GTO being an Opel is off base. It's a direct Holden Monaro with Pontiac "look at me cladding". Even though the styling is cavalier bland...


Hmmm...

quote:
The Pontiac GTO was relaunched in the United States in 2004, based on the Holden Monaro's V platform. The Monaro is a 2 door coupe variant of the Australian developed VT/VX Holden Commodore. The Commodore was in turn developed by enlarging the European designed 1994 Opel Omega B, which was marketed in its original form in the U.S. from 1997 to 2001 as the Cadillac Catera. The revival was prompted by former GM chairman Bob Lutz,[1] who drove a Holden Monaro while on a business trip in Australia.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pontiac_GTO#2004


RE: Fugly
By FITCamaro on 11/3/2008 11:10:00 AM , Rating: 1
You're comparing the base model V6 Camaro to the Nissan when the Nissan will be the same price as the V8 Camaro? Not exactly a fair comparison.


RE: Fugly
By theapparition on 11/3/2008 11:58:15 AM , Rating: 2
Sort of......

Even though the original Monaro and Commodore shared a platform, the platform itself was redesigned from the Omega/Catera that came before it.

Yes, there may have been evolutionary clues, but you can hardly call it a Catera pt II.

The newer Commodores are on a completely different platform, the rear drive zeta platform.


RE: Fugly
By Reclaimer77 on 11/3/2008 10:17:59 AM , Rating: 3
I am SO sick of the " retro " styling trend that has pervasively taken over American styling.

And the Camaro... wth ? Why would I pay that much money for a " retro " looking car that was designed before I was even born ? When for a bit more cheddar, I can get a Corvette which has WORLD CLASS performance and looks like a sleek, smoothed, merchant of ass kicking.

This is why the new Camaro will fail just like the old F body ones did. The price difference when compared to the 'Vette just isn't compelling enough to buy a vastly inferior car. I'm sure it has appeal for a huge minority of people who were actually around when clunky, ugly, crap car designs were " in ", but for the rest of us no thanks.


RE: Fugly
By FITCamaro on 11/3/2008 11:07:16 AM , Rating: 1
$10-15,000 is a pretty big price difference.


RE: Fugly
By The0ne on 11/3/2008 11:22:20 AM , Rating: 3
Maybe because they can't come up with good designs anymore :) Where are the exotic concept vehicles where you pick and choose what goes into production. Well, why spend the time and money doing that when you can live off the fat of your previous models. This idea only works so far in term of life cycle. Eventually consumers would want something that is different, even if only visual.


RE: Fugly
By Reclaimer77 on 11/3/2008 5:47:44 PM , Rating: 2
Well yeah, and when they do come up with something different its the equivalent of optical rape. Like the Pontiac Aztec...

*shivers*


RE: Fugly
By theapparition on 11/3/2008 12:09:21 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
This is why the new Camaro will fail just like the old F body ones did.

The old F-bodies were incredible bargains. They sold far more of them than Vettes. Realisticly, it was a 10-15k difference between a C5 and F-body at the end. That's enough of a dealbreaker for many of the buyers (for the finanace crowd, an extra $300/mo). It was sad to see them go, only to be replaced by this monstrosity.

Just like the Thunderbird, VW Beetle, PT Cruiser, Mustang, Charger, Challenger, and every other retro car model. They will sell like hotcakes for a few years, than people will get sick of them again and sales will free fall. Mustang sales are down 40% this year alone, after sales had already declined from the previous year. Local Dodge dealerships have Challengers sitting on the lots!

My heads/cam TransAm is running like a champ, and I'll always be fond of it. But the vettes are just soooooo much better car in every way. Worth every penny of the price difference.


RE: Fugly
By Reclaimer77 on 11/3/2008 5:44:28 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The old F-bodies were incredible bargains. They sold far more of them than Vettes.


Uhhh the reason the F bodies were boxed was because of lack of sales. So I'm not sure I agree. Vettes might not have sold as much in volume as the F bodies, but EVERY 'Vette that rolled off the lines were sold. The F bodies , year after year, were amassing large unsold surpluses.

They might have been great cars, but at the end I remember the WS-6 and SS models were dangerously approaching Corvette pricing. I mean, what were they thinking. If I can finance a WS-6, then I can damn sure find a way to sink another 10k into a loan and just get a 'Vette. Why bother with the 'other white meat ' ?

quote:
Local Dodge dealerships have Challengers sitting on the lots!


I have noticed that. Is it just me or does the new Challenger just not cut the mustard ?

quote:
But the vettes are just soooooo much better car in every way. Worth every penny of the price difference.


Totally agree and thats all I'm saying.


RE: Fugly
By theapparition on 11/4/2008 7:02:38 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Uhhh the reason the F bodies were boxed was because of lack of sales.

Lack of sales compared to GM's projections. They wanted it to be sales competitive with the Mustang, which it couldn't match. Pricing was based on projected volume, and when the volume wasn't there, the car wasn't as profitable as they wanted. However, by the numbers, in 2002 (last year of sales) the F-bodies sold about 3x the number of Corvettes. That was a similar trend throughout the life of the 4th gen F-bodies.

quote:
EVERY 'Vette that rolled off the lines were sold. The F bodies , year after year, were amassing large unsold surpluses.

I'll agree/disagree with that. Z28/WS6 models were very hard to find and the ones that you did were commanding huge markups in 2002. V6 models.......well, they did sit. I mean, who wants to deal with all the quirks of the F-body if it doesn't have the power to go with it?

10K extra into a loan is just not feasible for many. That could have been the difference between a $500 loan and a $700 loan.

Don't get me wrong, I love the Vette, have 3 of them myself (C6 Z06, C6 vert, C5 targa) and also a TransAm. While the vettes are better at most, for some things, the F-bodies were better at. For drag racing, the solid rear and much cheaper cost of parts (for the same f-ing part, mind you), made entry prices for a car that could do 90% of the vette a relative bargain.


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