The 2017 Ford Fusion made its debut today at the Detroit Auto Show featuring new styling here and there, as well as a lot more tech of course. Driving enthusiasts will however be most interested in a new option under the hood.
Call it SHO Junior, or just the V6 Sport as Ford does, but the 2017 Fusion will offer a new high-performance version that can finally compete with V6’s from everyone else and even knock them back a bit.
The all-wheel-drive Fusion V6 Sport gets a feisty small-block 2.7 liter twin-turbocharged V6 with 325 horsepower and 350 pound-feet of torque similar to the one in the new Edge Sport and F-150. That trumps the Nissan Maxima by 25 horses, and the Camry and Accord by nearly 50.
And unlike the Maxima, the Fusion V6 Sport will have a real transmission, not a CVT. That would be a six-speed automatic complete with paddle shifters on the steering wheel. And that’s a good thing because unfortunately the shift lever is gone, replaced with a rotary dial.
And since we’re inside the new Fusion, the interior looks otherwise virtually identical to the current one with exception of a few new trim finishes. Ford’s new SYNC 3 infotainment system is the big news here finally replacing the disaster known as MyFord Touch.
There are also some new driver assistance systems available for 2017 that will be the first to include pedestrian detection in a Ford. There’s hands-free parallel and perpendicular parking capability, lane-keeping assist and more I think most of you couldn’t care less about.
What might actually matter to the driver of the V6 Sport is a first for Fusion. It has continuously controlled dampers, or dial-a-ride. The system can change your handling experience automatically on the fly with changing conditions or by how you set it via drive modes.
The system also has pothole detection that can adjust the shock absorbers instantaneously to reduce the severity of impacts while keeping the handling attitude solid.
As you already might have noticed, styling for 2017 is only slightly revised. New headlights and a reshaped grille take it in a new direction a little bit, but not drastically. There’s also new LED light bar tail lamps.
Unique style for the V6 Sport include its own front fascia with deeper air intakes, a black mesh grille, dark 19-inch wheels, rear spoiler and some nice looking dual twin exhaust outlets. Otherwise, most people aren’t going to notice you sporting your new SHO Junior. That will appeal to some, and likely disappoint others.
The 2017 Ford Fusion V6 Sport arrives at dealerships this summer with pricing and final specifications to be announced closer to that time.