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The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
 |  Jun 19 2012, 2:45 PM

Future Hybrids


Even though they’ve been around for well over a decade now, hybrids still have that ‘new technology’ feel. Consumers continue to be apprehensive to hybrid technology and there’s plenty of misinformation surrounding it.

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 |  Jan 09 2012, 9:02 AM

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In a press conference that clearly targeted the Honda Accord and Toyota Camry, Ford said consumers “expect more” than what its Japanese rivals have been offering and have, in response, developed the all new 2013 Fusion sedan. The car was unveiled today at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

With a fresh new design, an impressive interior and plenty of technology, the Fusions big boast is its fuel economy, which global product development boss Derrick Kuzak calls “game changing.” Hardly an empty remark, the Fusion will get 26 mpg city and 37 mpg highway with a new EcoBoost 1.6-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine. (Both an entry level 170-hp 2.5-liter 4-cylinder and a 237-hp EcoBoost 2.0-liter will be offered as well).

Taking a step up in fuel economy is the new hybrid model, which bests even the new Camry Hybrid by a significant margin with 44 mpg city and 47 mpg highway. Ford even showed off what it calls the Fusion Energi, a plug-in hybrid, with an incredible 100 mpge rating – 8 more than even the Volt.

GALLERY: 2013 Ford Fusion Debut

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GALLERY: 2013 Ford Fusion

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See AutoGuide’s First Look Video of the Ford Fusion below:

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 |  Jun 14 2011, 8:02 PM

With Ford planning to blitz the auto-market in the first quarter of 2012 with its eight new models, the American automaker hopes the Fusion will make a major impact with its next-gen sophisticated hybrid system.

According to a source inside Ford the Blue Oval is targeting a 47-48-mpg rating for the car in the city, with an even higher rating for the highway. Currently the Fusion gets a 41-mpg rating in the city, making for a significant increase.

Closing in on the 50-mpg mark, the Fusion Hybrid would then be encroaching on the 50-mpg average Toyota Prius.

[Source: FordInsideNews]

 |  Oct 22 2010, 3:04 PM

Green Car Journal has announced its candidates for its Green Car Of The Year award, with the five car field being composed of some pretty serious competition,

Naturally, the Chevrolet Volt and Nissan Leaf are the leading contenders, with the Lincoln MKZ Hybrid, Hyundai Sonata Hybrid rounding out the field, and the Ford Fiesta being the sole nominee that runs solely on a gasoline engine and no electric components. Regardless, the Fiesta can still get 40 mpg on the highway, making it a worthy candidate.

The winner will be announced at the Los Angeles Auto Show in November

Hit the jump to see the official press release

[Source: Green Car Journal]

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 |  May 17 2010, 10:53 AM

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Parents magazine has made the list (and assumedly checked it twice) to bring you their top 15 picks of family-friendly vehicles for 2010. Teaming up with Edmunds.com, Parents has only included models that come equipped with antilock brakes and front, side, and side-curtain air bags. These vehicles also come with family necessities such as sliding rear seats, smart storage for toys, and other amenities that make the drive that much smoother. You may be surprised to learn that not many minivans or SUVs made the list. The picks aren’t in any particular order and are broken down into categories such as sedans, hybrids and large vehicles.

They are listed after the jump, along with a few of their top selling points:

[Source: Parents]

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 |  Jan 11 2010, 9:09 AM

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The Ford Fusion Hybrid has been named North American Car of the Year, beating out the other two finalists, the Buick LaCrosse and the Volkswagen Golf.

The announcement kicked off the festivities at the 2010 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. The Ford Fusion received the nod from a panel of 49 journalists from the United States and Canada.

The Ford Fusion Hybrid boasts an EPA-estimated 41 mpg in the city, 36 mpg on the highway, numbers which Ford says make it America’s most fuel efficient mid-sized sedan.

The victory marked just the second time Ford has won the North American Car of the Year Award. FoMoCo last won the award in 2000 with the Ford Focus.

Domestic automakers have now won North American Car of the Year nine times in 17 years. The Ford Fusion Hybrid is also the fourth hybrid to receive the award, and the second Ford hybrid, following the Ford Escape Hybrid in 2005.

The Ford Transit Connect also won North American Truck of the Year, marking the third time a manufacturer swept both awards in a single year.

“Winning both of these prestigious awards is confirmation that the ONE Ford plan is working, delivering industry-leading products for our customers,” said Mark Fields, president of The Americas.

The Hyundai Genesis Sedan received the honor at the 2009 Detroit Auto Show.

Gallery: Ford Fusion Hybrid, North American Car of the Year

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 |  Jan 11 2010, 8:58 AM

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The Ford Transit Connect has been named North American Truck of the Year, beating out the other two finalists, the Chevrolet Equinox and the Subaru Outback.

The announcement kicked off the festivities at the 2010 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. The Ford Transit Connect was selected by a panel of 49 journalists from the United States and Canada.

Designed to fill the needs of small businesses owners and entrepreneurs, the Ford Transit Connect is powered by a 2.0L inline-four engine with four-speed automatic transmission. Ford claims the Transit Connect gets double the fuel economy of full-sized vans with 22 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway.

The Ford Transit Connect has a cargo payload of 1,600 lb. and features an in-dash computer with high-speed Internet, Tool Link radio-frequency identification tracking and Crew Chief fleet tracking and diagnostic system.

Ford trucks have now won the award six times, most recently in 2009 with the Ford F-150. The Ford Fusion Hybrid also won North American Car of the Year, marking the third time a manufacturer swept both awards in a single year.

“Winning both of these prestigious awards is confirmation that the ONE Ford plan is working, delivering industry-leading products for our customers,” said Mark Fields, president of The Americas.

Domestic automakers have now won North American Truck of the Year 11 times in 17 years.

Gallery: Ford Transit Connect, North American Truck of the Year

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 |  Dec 16 2009, 1:35 PM

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***See AutoGuide’s LIVE 2010 Detroit Auto Show Coverage Here***

The short list for North American Car & Truck of the Year just got a lot shorter and the list of finalists includes one GM product and one Ford product in each category. The three finalists for 2010 North American Car of the Year include the Ford Fusion Hybrid, Buick LaCrosse and Volkswagen Golf. As for Truck of the Year, the three nods go to the Ford Transit Connect, the Chevrolet Equinox and Subaru Outback.

The winner will be announced at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit on January 11th. The North American Car & Truck of the Year is decided by a panel of 49 journalists from both the U.S. and Canada.

Last year the winners included the Hyundai Genesis and Ford F-150, marking the first time a Korean automaker had won Car of the Year. Domestics have won Car of the Year eight times, with European countries taking the award four times and the Japanese three times. Truck of the year has long been dominated by domestic automakers, taking the award 10 times, compared to four for the Japanese and two for the Europeans.

AutoGuide will be covering the 2010 North American Car & Truck of the Year awards live at the Detroit Auto Show starting January 11th.

[Source: Automotive News]

 |  Oct 19 2009, 10:16 AM

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Ford is closing in on its Japanese rivals in the hybrid sales race. So far in 2009 the American automaker has posted a 73 percent gain in its hybrid sales with a total of 26,016 vehicles sold.  That number is roughly 4,000 short of Honda’s total hybrid sales at 29,958 units, but the percentage of gain should have the Japanese automakers worried. Honda, a distant second to segment leader Toyota, has managed only 8 percent growth so far this year.

Toyota’s hybrid sales this year in the U.S. total 144,351 units, although sales of the Prius are down 19.4 percent. The Pirus is still the top hybrid model, followed by Toyota’s Camry Hybrid, the Honda Insight and Civic Hybrid and then the ford Fusion and Escape hybrids.

Much of Ford’s surge can be attributed to the Fusion Hybrid, which uses technology similar to Toyota’s to deliver 41/36 mpg (city/highway). This two-mode hybrid technology is more advanced than the setup Honda is currently using.

Honda isn’t about to give up it’s second place spot, however, and has announced that the Insight will get improvements in fuel-economy and ride quality. Ford, however, is planning it’s own attack, with the 2010 Murcury Milan Hybrid due out soon, which should give Ford a slight increase in its overall hybrid sales numbers.

[Source: The Independent and LeftLaneNews]

 |  Jun 25 2009, 9:59 AM

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We still have more than half of 2009 to go and already the list of 2010 North American Car & Truck of the Year nominees have been picked. That’s because the list is essentially a list of every new model for 2010.

Nominated for car of the year are: the Audi S4, BMW Z4, BMW 335d, BMW 5 Series Gran Turismo, Buick LaCrosse, Cadillac CTS Sport Wagon, Chevrolet Camaro, Ford Fusion, Ford Fusion Hybrid, Ford Mustang, For Mustang GT500, Ford Taurus, Ford Taurus SHO, Honda Insight, Hyundai Genesis Coupe, Kia Forte, Kia Soul, Lexus HS250h, Lotus Evora, Mazda3, MazdaSpeed3, Mercedes E-Class, Nissan Cube, Nissan 370Z, Porsche Panamera, Subaru Legacy, Suzuki Kizashi, Toyota Prius, Volkswagen Golf, Volkswagen Golf TDI.

The 2010 North American Truck of the Year list is only slightly shorter and includes: the Acura ZDX, BMw X5 xDrive 35d, Cadillac SRX, Chevrolet Equinox, Ford Transit Connect, GMC Terrain, Honda Crosstour, Land Rover LR4, Lincoln MKT, Subaru Outback, Toyota 4Runner and Volvo XC60.

Many off these vehicles have yet to be officially released and some (like the Honda Crosstour) haven’t even been officially named yet.

Jurors will now begin the lengthy process of making a short list, with the final winners chosen at the 2010 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

Last year’s winners were the Hyundai Genesis and the Ford F-150.

[Source: Edmunds]

 |  Jan 29 2009, 1:01 PM

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Ford’s Fusion Hybrid, which boasts a class leading fuel economy rating of 36/41 mpg (city/highway) will qualify for a $3,400 tax credit – the largest such tax credit the federal government has ever given out.The same tax credit will also apply to the Mercury Milan Hybrid.

Ford is excited about this incentive and hopes it is enough to win over buyers who might have considered the initial cost of Hybrid ownership to be too steep.

“Hybrids are an important part of our strategy to deliver the best or among the best fuel economy
with all of our new products, and the Fusion and Milan Hybrids have set the pace for the company,
as well as our competitors,” said Derrick Kuzak, group vice president of Global Product Development at Ford. “We’re glad to see our government help promote these advanced, clean fuel-efficient vehicles to the
consumer.”

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Ford has made huge strides with its Fusion Hybrid, posting significantly better fuel economy numbers than any of the competition. Much of that has to do with the new technology Ford has developed for its second generation hybrid system. The system includes: a smaller and lighter nickel-metal hydride battery that provides 28 percent more power than the outgoing battery; a regenerative braking system; a new hybrid system that can operate on pure electric energy up to 47 mph and throttle control that reduces airflow on shutdowns and thereby reducing fuel needed on restarts.

In total the new Fusion Hybrid boasts 119 patents and the result is a car that can drive 700 miles on a tank.

If you want the full tax credit be aware that it is only available to those who purchase a car before March 31, 2009. As of April 1st only half of that credit will be available. The amount will be further reduced in the fourth quarter of 2009.

As for Ford’s other models, the 2009 Escape and Mariner Hybrid FWD models qualify for a $3,000 tax credit, with 4WD models receiving a $1,950 credit. Owners of previous model-year Escape and Mariner hybrid models may also qualify for varying credit amounts from $1,950 to $3,000.

Official release after the jump:

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