General Question

tedibear's avatar

Ford Fusion or Camry Hybrid?

Asked by tedibear (18820points) July 22nd, 2009

We are discussing buying a new car. The two currently under consideration are the Ford Fusion and the Toyota Camry Hybrid.

I’m not a “car person” so my requirements are reliability, safety, handling in snow & rain and repair expense. I’m not as concerned with specific technical details as I doubt that I would understand them.

If you have one of these cars, or have direct experience with one of them, I would appreciate reading your thoughts and opinions.

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5 Answers

robmandu's avatar

USA Today’s James R. Healey recently reviewed the Ford Fusion Hybrid… and liked it so much he declared it the “best gas-electric hybrid yet”.

He sums it up saying:

There are three facets to consider in evaluating a gasoline-electric hybrid: the underlying vehicle itself, the hybrid system and the mileage.

Assuming the preproduction Fusion hybrid test car was representative — Ford says it was — the Fusion’s scores in those three categories are good, great and adequate, but potentially, very good.

The Toyota Prius crowd will protest. Prius is lower-priced, has about the same room inside, has a handy hatchback configuration, gets better mileage — and most of those attributes could improve when the 2010 Prius goes on sale in a few months — so how could Fusion be the best hybrid?

Simple. Fusion drives better. A car is, after all, a driving machine. Brownie points for saving somewhat more fuel or offering a cargo-friendly hatchback, but driving feel is most important.

And there, Fusion is without equal among hybrids.

Personally, I have difficulty in finding American branded cars to be competitive. I’d need to drive all of them to be sure. It’s hard to bet against Toyota in the hybrid category.

This review was before the current Prius was released. And I don’t know about the Camry Hybrid. But this latest Prius has optional solar panels that can drive the a/c while the car is parked in the hot Texas sun. Since I live under that sun, I would be sorely tempted by that feature alone.

gailcalled's avatar

@robmandu: What about those solar panels during the 9 months and 8 feet of snow I call winter here?

cwilbur's avatar

@gailcalled: Would you have much need to run the a/c during the 9 months of 8 feet of snow?

Darwin's avatar

Maybe they could switch the solar panels over to running something else, such as keeping the engine warm overnight through stored power. Just because it snows where you are doesn’t mean the sun disappears.

gailcalled's avatar

@Darwin: Ya wanna bet?

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