NEW FOR 2008:

– Standard tire pressure monitoring system
– Optional reverse sensing system, ambient lighting and Ford Sync hands-free communications and entertainment system
– New Sport Appearance Package
– SE trim line is now four-cylinder only
– Keyless entry keypad standard on all SEL models
– Exterior colours: White Suede Clearcoat, Moss Green Clearcoat Metallic, Vapor Silver Clearcoat Metallic, Dark Ink Blue Clearcoat Metallic and Light Sage Clearcoat Metallic added

For 2008, the Ford Fusion receives new standard and optional equipment, including a Sport Appearance Package that adds black chrome grille, colour-keyed fog lamps, 18-inch aluminum wheels, sport-tuned suspension, unique spoiler, chrome exhaust tips, red seat inserts and red stitching on the seats, steering wheel and centre console. The package is available with Black, Silver and Redfire exterior colours.

The Fusion is available with a choice of 2.3-litre four-cylinder with five-speed manual or optional five-speed automatic, and 3.0-litre V6 engine with six-speed automatic. The 3.0-litre can be optioned with all-wheel drive, which runs in front-wheel configuration until it detects slippage, whereupon it redirects torque to the rear wheels. Trim lines are the SE, with 2.3-litre only, and the SEL, with 2.3- or 3.0-litre.

Features on the SE include 16-inch steel wheels (with 2.3-litre) or 16-inch alloy wheels (with 3.0-litre), air conditioning, six-way power driver’s seat, fold-flat front passenger seat, power mirrors, keyless entry, speed-sensitive wipers, CD/MP3 stereo with SIRIUS Satellite Radio, audio input jack and wheel-mounted controls, two-tier centre console, dual illuminated vanity mirrors, 60/40 split-folding rear seat, tilt and telescopic wheel, power windows, and tire pressure monitoring system.

The SEL adds 17-inch alloy wheels, automatic climate control, six-CD/MP3 stereo, message centre with trip computer, overhead console, automatic headlights, heated mirrors with puddle lamps, keyless entry pad, upgraded cloth interior, analogue clock, compass, leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls, and auto-dimming rear-view mirror.

Available options include a premium stereo, power sunroof, reverse sensing system, heated leather seats and voice-activated navigation system.

The Fusion is very well done for its price: it rides and handles well, it has good interior space, and its build quality is improved over previous Ford models. The four-cylinder can be a bit anemic when mated to the automatic transmission, and the V6 is a good all-around performer, especially with the long list of features on the SEL model.

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