With beautiful exterior lines and a wonderful interior, the 2018 Ford Fusion Platinum Energi combines style and luxury in a way that few in the segment can match. A supplemental EV range of up to 20 miles means fewer trips to the gas station, and when combined with an extra-efficient 2.0-liter I4 plug-in hybrid petrol engine, drivers are looking at a combined range of up to 104-mpge*. It’s quiet and comfortable, and after spending a week with it, we came to one very clear conclusion: We didn’t want to give it back.
2018 Ford Fusion Platinum Energi Exterior
Back in 2017, Ford stylists set fourth to give their already great-looking Fusion sedan a bit of a facelift. Configurable daytime running lamps with LED surrounds, a honeycomb grille with bright trim work, a small lip spoiler and fashionable 18-inch aluminum wheels wearing 235/45-series Michelin tires were added, and gave the Fusion a bit more pizazz. From a design perspective, it’s arguably the best looking vehicle in Ford’s entire fleet.
Aside from the small fender and rear end badges, onlookers would also be hard pressed to figure out the Fusion comes with plug-in capabilities. The left front fender is home to the Energi’s front charge port, and is complimented by an LED trim ring that lights up when plugged in, while the standard fuel door occupies the rear left quarter. Other niceties include auxiliary LED driving lights with polished trim in the lower front fascia, a polished single exhaust port, and a European-style roof antenna.
2018 Ford Fusion Platinum Energi Interior
One of the biggest surprises was the quality and the comfort of the Fusion’s cabin. While the mechanics of the vehicle are solely focused on economy, the interior is centered on luxury and convenience. The leather front seats with contrasting piping and crosshatch stitching offer both heat and ventilation, while rear passengers are treated to generous amounts of head and legroom. Premium materials such as the double-stitched dash, wood inlays, and even the center console’s rotary gear are topnotch. The result is that the Fusion Platinum feels quite upscale.
Ford’s SYNC 3 system works well,and offers unique hybrid electric content while at the same time being user friendly. This allows for quick connectivity to mobile devices, vehicle settings, and even the Energi’s SmartGauge with EcoGuide, a system that lets drivers optimize vehicle efficiency by providing real-time feedback. This information is also available through the SmartGauge screen located to the left of the Fusion’s analog speedometer. It’s fully customizable to show instant fuel economy, fuel economy history, a battery regeneration meter, plus much more.
Manual HVAC controls have also been retained on the Energi, and we must say that they’re quite welcome. There’s no fishing through a touchscreen to access the heat or AC, just clean intuitive controls that are presented front and center. Outward visibility is quite good, with the cabin delivering a quiet experience once underway. The only downside is that cargo space is limited to 8.2 cubic-feet as the Energi’s batteries utilize much of the available trunk space.
2018 Ford Fusion Platinum Energi Performance
By delivering a combined EPA rated maximum of 104-mpge* along with up to 20 miles of EV range, the 2018 Fusion Energi is a very efficient automobile. It can be fully charged using a 110v outlet in about 7.5 hrs, or via 220v Level 2 fast charger in an average of 2.5 hrs. Open the hood, and folks will notice the 2.0-liter Atkinson-Cycle I-4 plug-in hybrid engine, which produces 141 horsepower and 129 lb-ft of torque, and that on its own is good for 43 mpg city, 41 mpg on the highway, and 42 mpg* during combined driving. Both systems work seamlessly with each other, and you’d be hard pressed to know when you’re running on gas or electric power.
Acceleration is adequate, and the Fusion will get to 60 mph in a tad over 8-seconds. Handling and braking characteristics are also on par with others in the segment, and the Fusion feels sure-footed regardless of the road surface. As a plug-in the Fusion Energi works very well, but don’t overlook that the Fusion also comes in a standard hybrid version which delivers similar figures.
2018 Ford Fusion Platinum Energi Safety
With safety features like Pre-collision Assist with Pedestrian Detection, AdvanceTrac with Roll Stablity Control, Lane-Keeping alert, airbags throughout the cabin, four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes, traction control, electronic-assist parking brake and a standard rear view camera, Ford’s commitment to safety runs deep.
Additional safety features can viewed at Ford.com.
2018 Ford Fusion Platinum Energi Overall
Being propelled by electricity alone does have its advantages. It’s quiet, calming, and overall a pleasurable experience. Combine that with a luxurious interior and competent road manners, and the 2018 Fusion Energi presents itself as great contender in the plug-in hybrid market.
Drop by your local AutoNation Ford dealer today to check one out!
*Fuel economy values (mpg) are EPA estimates. Actual mileage will vary and depends on several factors including driving habits and vehicle condition.
**Vehicle MSRP of $41,100.00 excludes taxes, title, transportation, options, and dealer fees.