There is something appealing about Ford’s plug-in electric hybrids. June sales reflect Ford’s EV appeal (the Fusion Energi was #2 nationwide in plug-in electric car sales), and recent news from Los Angeles confirms the popularity of the vehicle. Electrified Ford Fusions are becoming an important part of Ford sales in the region, according to a press release from Ford, as they are surging in Los Angeles.
This is essentially news that were we receiving in Florida as well. When I went with a friend to test drive Ford’s plug-in hybrid Fusion Energi and C-Max Energi models, we were told they didn’t have any because California was swallowing them all up.
The technology combined with ample room for 5 adults grab many a buyer looking for electric driving, plenty of space, and a fairly affordable price. Electrified Fords have attracted new consumers to the brand, which is always important for an automaker (“conquest sales” are highly valued due to significant customer loyalty in this market). The new EV drivers, meanwhile, are buoyantly cruising the streets in the new-tech, efficient sedan.
Ford reports that, based on Ford June sales figures, Fusion Energi sales jumped nearly 40% in LA compared to June 2015. During the same period, Fusion Hybrid sales jumped 35%. Both of these numbers are retail sales and do not include fleet sales.
California is transitioning now to cleaner air. Even more than the increase across the broader EV market, sales of the Ford Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid are jumping. The overall US electric car market was up 2.1% in June 2016 vs June 2015, the plug-in hybrid segment of that market was up 68.3%, and Fusion Energi sales were up 133.8%. For the year through June, EV sales are up 8.5%, PHEV sales 45.7%, and Fusion Energi sales 68.6%.
Personally, I like the C-Max Energi more than the Fusion Energi, and it seems plenty of other people do too, as it was #5 on the EV sales chart in June. As my friend Kim said after test driving one of the C-Max Hybrids (as I noted, the Energi version wasn’t on the lot), “You can fit a basketball players easily in the back seat”.
Ford continues, comparing the fantastic sales in July to even broader sales in the segment, “By comparison, the total midsize sedan segment is down nearly 5% in LA through May, according to IHS Automotive data. Consumer demand for trucks and SUVs continues to rise in Los Angeles.”
As we’ve highlighted in a less-enthusiastic way, the 2017 Fusion Energy boasts the top combined range of any plug-in hybrid or fully electric car — 610 miles on a full tank of gas and battery charge (EPA estimates). Wade Jackson, Ford Fusion marketing manager, said: “The spike in Fusion Hybrid and Energi sales is a testament to Ford’s advanced engineering team developing fuel-efficient and fun-to-drive electric vehicles offering customers the widest range of choice in the segment.”
In fact, a nice note is that “overall sales of Fusion in LA are also bucking the trend in the midsize car segment, with sales up 20% in June and 12% year-to-date”.
The Fusion (electrified and not) isn’t just a drop in the bucket of Ford sales — it’s one of Ford’s premier models. “After F-series, the Fusion is the best-selling vehicle to millennial customers in Ford’s overall vehicle lineup and remains Ford’s best-selling car.”
Ford’s vehicles were mighty appealing to my friend Kim after one test drive, and apparently, she is not alone. “Fusion registrations to women are up 20 percent in California through May, compared to the same period in 2015, according to IHS Automotive personal new vehicle registration data.”
With this improvement over last year, it makes one wonder what next year’s sales will be.
Here are a few more details on the Fusion Energi: “The 2017 Ford Fusion Energi has an EPA-estimated rating of 43 city/41 hwy/42 combined MPG, a 14-gallon tank and 21 miles of all-electric range. Range calculation is based on www.fueleconomy.gov. The 2017 Ford Fusion Hybrid has an EPA-estimated rating of 43 city/41 hwy/42 combined and a 13.5-gallon tank. Actual mileage and range will vary.”