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The just-released new2013 Ford Fusion Energicouldn't be called inexpensive, but thanks to a solid electric-only drive range and good fuel efficiency, Ford's latest plug-in hybrid sedan still makes a good value proposition for those with a heavy commute.
Starting with the expertly styled and spacious new Fusion midsize, Ford adds a plug-in hybrid system featuring a 2.0-liter Atkinson-cycle four-cylinder plus electric motor and eCVT automatic transmission, drawing power from a 7.6-kWH lithium-ion battery pack. The system outputs 195 max horsepower for ample power delivery as the fuel savings start to add up.
Fusion Energi: Efficiency By the Numbers
Shelling out extra cash for a plug-in hybrid brings expectations of money savings, and the Ford delivers. Its electric-power-only cruising range of 21 miles is significantly better than the Toyota Prius Plug-In and Honda Accord Plug-In Hybrid. The Energi can also cruise at real highway speeds - up to 85 mph - without kicking in the gas engine.
The EPA rates the Fusion Energi at 108 MPGe city, 92 MPGe highway and 100 MPGe combined. Those ratings are based on a typical combination of EV and hybrid drive modes. After the 21-mile range is exhausted, the Ford is rated at 44 city/41 highway/42 combined mpg. Driving range with a full tank and battery pack is 620 miles, or enough to drive from San Diego to Sacramento along Highway 101 without stopping.
Pricing and Availability
Hot on the heels of the Ford C-MAX Energi, which released late last year, the Fusion Energi is officially on sale now in most national markets. The car is offered in a single, well-equipped trim level: the SE. Pricing starts at $38,700 plus destination charges.
As for Federal electric car tax credits, the Fusion Energi is eligible, but due to its smaller battery size than cars like the Nissan LEAF and Chevy Volt, the incentive isn't as large. Currently, the maximum claimable credit sits at $3,751, bringing net pricing to $35,744 including all destination charges.