2013 Ford Fusion Earns AOL Autos Car of the Year Honor

January 14, 2013 (PRLEAP.COM) Business News
WILBRAHAM, Mass., Jan. 14, 2013 — AOL Autos editors test-drive nearly every new car released in a given year, giving them an impressive breadth of knowledge of vehicles. That expertise gives the publication's pick for Car of the Year impressive weight in the industry, and it has selected the 2013 Ford Fusion over class competitors like the Nissan Altima and perennial favorites like the BMW 3 Series.

Editors for AOL Autos applauded the redesigned Fusion's bold design and interior features, including available dual-zone climate control, leather upholstery and push-button start. They also gave the Fusion high marks for its improved fuel efficiency, which is up to 34 mpg on the highway for the gasoline-powered model and the Fusion Hybrid achieving up to 47 mpg in both highway and city driving. Finally, the editors commended the new generation Fusion for raising the bar in the family sedan segment, with impressive performance, options and value.

"The Fusion offers the right balance between features and price point, giving drivers everything they need and want in a sedan without adding on expensive amenities that nobody really uses," said Jason Perez, General Manager of Balise Ford of Wilbraham, a western Massachusetts Ford dealership. "That value proposition puts the Fusion ahead of its competitors, because nobody else offers the same balance in a vehicle."

Another impressive feature of the new Fusion is its safety, and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety recently included the sedan in the year's first group of Top Safety Pick+ awardees. Only 13 vehicles of those evaluated so far were able to claim Top Safety Pick+ status, with the top designation going to vehicles that scored a top rating of "good" in four out of five tests performed and no less than "acceptable" in the fifth. The tests include a new small frontal overlap crash test, as well as moderate frontal overlap, side impact, rollover and rear impact evaluations.

A plug-in variant of the Fusion, the Ford Fusion Energi, will be arriving at dealerships early this year and was recently rated as earning up to 108 MPGe by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. That rating makes the Fusion Energi the most fuel-efficient sedan, besting the Toyota Prius plug-in hybrid by 5 MPGe. New technology will be available in the Energi, including SmartGauge with EcoGuide, which will provide fuel economy readings and coaching functions to help owners drive more efficiently.

"Drivers who love the features of the Fusion but want even better fuel economy out on the road will love the Fusion Energi," added Perez. "Plug-in hybrids are really gaining in popularity right now, and the Fusion Energi will take the market by storm when it arrives at dealerships this year."

About Balise Ford of Wilbraham:
Balise Ford of Wilbraham is dedicated to providing drivers in Western Massachusetts with a customer-first environment throughout the dealership. Offering the full lineup of Ford vehicles at their Ford dealership near Springfield, including the Ford Fusion, Ford F-150, Ford Escape, Ford Focus and Ford C-MAX Hybrid, Balise Ford strives to help each customer find the model that suits their needs and lifestyle. Visit their temporary showroom at 2045 Boston Road in Wilbraham, Mass., while their permanent location is being turned into a brand-new state-of-the-art facility. You can also visit them online at www.balisefordofwilbraham.com, call them at 413-306-3049 or find them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/BaliseFordWilbraham.