Greene Ford Compares 2017 Ford Fusion VS 2017 BMW 3 Near Cleveland, GA

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2017 Ford Fusion

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VS

2017 BMW 3

Safety Comparison

For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Ford Fusion are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The BMW 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.

The rear seatbelts optional on the Fusion inflate when a collision is detected, helping to spread crash forces over a much larger area of the body and limiting head and neck movement. This can help prevent spinal and internal injuries. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer inflatable seatbelts.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety tests front crash prevention systems. With a score of 6 points, IIHS rates the Active Braking optional in the Fusion as “Superior.” The 3 Series Sedan scores at most only 3 points and is rated only “Advanced.”

To help make backing safer, the Fusion’s optional cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

The Fusion (except S)’s optional driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the Fusion and the 3 Series Sedan have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, available lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and front and rear parking sensors.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Ford Fusion is safer than the BMW 3 Series Sedan:

 

Fusion

3 Series Sedan

 

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

HIC

125

232

Neck Injury Risk

28%

36%

Neck Stress

200 lbs.

345 lbs.

Neck Compression

24 lbs.

113 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

167/333 lbs.

321/434 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

A significantly tougher test than their original offset frontal crash test, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety does 40 MPH small overlap frontal offset crash tests. In this test, where only 25% of the total width of the vehicle is struck, results indicate that the Ford Fusion is safer than the 3 Series Sedan:

 

Fusion

3 Series Sedan

Overall Evaluation

GOOD

MARGINAL

Restraints

GOOD

GOOD

Head Neck Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Head injury index

86

276

Peak Head Forces

0 G’s

0 G’s

Chest Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Max Chest Compression

18 cm

21 cm

Hip & Thigh Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Femur Force R/L

.4/.3 kN

2.6/3.2 kN

Hip & Thigh Injury Risk R/L

0%/0%

0%/1%

Lower Leg Evaluation

GOOD

MARGINAL

Tibia index R/L

.63/.41

.89/1.03

Tibia forces R/L

1/1.2 kN

6.1/6 kN

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Ford Fusion is safer than the BMW 3 Series Sedan:

 

Fusion

3 Series Sedan

 

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

74

258

 

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

225

326

Spine Acceleration

61 G’s

64 G’s

 

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Max Damage Depth

16 inches

17 inches

HIC

268

291

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and with its optional front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Fusion the rating of “Top Pick” for 2017, a rating granted to only 103 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The 3 Series Sedan was not even a “Top Pick” for 2016.

Warranty Comparison

Ford’s powertrain warranty covers the Fusion 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than BMW covers the 3 Series Sedan. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 5-years or 60,000 miles. Coverage on the 3 Series Sedan ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are almost 12 times as many Ford dealers as there are BMW dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Fusion’s warranty.

Reliability Comparison

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without their vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports predicts that the Fusion’s reliability will be 12% better than the 3 Series Sedan.

Engine Comparison

The Fusion Sport’s 2.7 turbo V6 produces 5 more horsepower (325 vs. 320) and 20 lbs.-ft. more torque (350 vs. 330) than the 340i’s optional 3.0 turbo 6 cyl.

As tested in Car and Driver the Fusion Sport 2.7 turbo V6 is faster than the 330i 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. (automatics tested):

 

Fusion

3 Series Sedan

Zero to 60 MPH

5.1 sec

5.6 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

13.3 sec

14.7 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

5.8 sec

6.5 sec

Quarter Mile

13.7 sec

14.2 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

101 MPH

98 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Ford Fusion uses regular unleaded gasoline (premium recommended with the 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. engine for maximum performance). The 3 Series Sedan requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The Fusion FWD’s standard fuel tank has 1.5 gallons more fuel capacity than the 3 Series Sedan Diesel’s standard fuel tank (16.5 vs. 15 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The Fusion AWD’s standard fuel tank has 2.2 gallons more fuel capacity than the 3 Series Sedan’s standard fuel tank (18 vs. 15.8 gallons).

The Fusion has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

The Fusion stops much shorter than the 3 Series Sedan:

 

Fusion

3 Series Sedan

 

80 to 0 MPH

216 feet

225 feet

Road and Track

70 to 0 MPH

155 feet

191 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

125 feet

132 feet

Consumer Reports

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

137 feet

141 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the Fusion SE’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the 3 Series Sedan (235/50R17 vs. 225/40R19).

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Fusion’s drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Fusion’s wheelbase is 1.6 inches longer than on the 3 Series Sedan (112.2 inches vs. 110.6 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Fusion is 2.4 inches wider in the front and .5 inches wider in the rear than on the 3 Series Sedan.

The Fusion Sport AWD handles at .89 G’s, while the 330i pulls only .87 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

Chassis Comparison

The front grille of the Fusion uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

The Fusion Platinum uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space Comparison

Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the Fusion is rated a Mid-size car by the EPA, while the 3 Series Sedan is rated a Compact.

The Fusion has 6.6 cubic feet more passenger volume than the 3 Series Sedan (102.8 vs. 96.2).

The Fusion has 2.3 inches more front legroom, 2.7 inches more front shoulder room, .1 inches more rear headroom, 3.2 inches more rear legroom and 1.8 inches more rear shoulder room than the 3 Series Sedan.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The Fusion has a much larger trunk than the 3 Series Sedan (16 vs. 13 cubic feet).

A low lift-over trunk design makes loading and unloading the Fusion easier. The Fusion’s trunk lift-over height is 24.4 inches, while the 3 Series Sedan’s liftover is 26 inches.

Ergonomics Comparison

The Fusion offers a remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The Fusion (except S)’s optional easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

In case you lock your keys in your vehicle, or don’t have them with you, you can let yourself in using the Fusion SE/Titanium/Sport/Platinum’s exterior keypad. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer an exterior keypad entry system, and its BMW Assist can’t unlock the doors if the vehicle doesn’t have cell phone reception or the driver can’t contact the service.

Consumer Reports rated the Fusion’s headlight performance “Good,” a higher rating than the 3 Series Sedan’s headlights, which were rated “Poor.”

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the Fusion has standard extendable sun visors. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer extendable visors.

Optional air-conditioned seats in the Fusion (except S/SE) keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

The Fusion (except S) offers an optional 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

Economic Advantages Comparison

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Fusion is less expensive to operate than the 3 Series Sedan because it costs $261 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the Fusion than the 3 Series Sedan, including $526 less for a water pump, $282 less for an alternator, $393 less for a starter, $294 less for fuel injection, $173 less for a fuel pump, $226 less for front struts, $696 less for a timing belt/chain and $180 less for a power steering pump.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Ford Fusion will be $9236 to $13526 less than for the BMW 3 Series Sedan.

Recommendations Comparison

Consumer Reports® recommends both the Ford Fusion and the BMW 3 Series Sedan, based on reliability, safety and performance.

Motor Trend selected the Fusion as their 2010 Car of the Year. The 3 Series has never been chosen.

A group of representative automotive journalists from North America selected the Fusion Hybrid as the 2010 North American Car of the Year. The 3 Series Sedan has never been chosen.

The Ford Fusion outsold the BMW 3 Series by over three to one during the 2016 model year.

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