You’ll find some incredibly strong contenders in the mid-size sedan segment, especially among the non-luxury models. The Ford Fusion is undoubtedly one of the strongest of those contenders, but competition like the Hyundai Sonata has been closing in for some time. Its current seventh-generation is now a genuine rival to the Fusion, so let’s see how they compare.
2017 Hyundai Sonata vs Ford Fusion
Styling: Hyundai Sonata
Today’s Hyundai Sonata is a much more serious, straightforward, and premium-looking car than some of its chrome-trimmed predecessors, with an even more prestigious aura about it than the Fusion. If you’re paying attention, you’ll notice an undeniable German influence in its design, which it’s hard to see anyone complaining about these days.
The Ford Fusion has always been a design to beat in this segment, and this generation looks as good now as it did when it was launched. It’s probably fair to say it’s a more sporty and frivolous design than the more serious Sonata, which may appeal to some buyers.
Interior Space: Hyundai Sonata
Buyers wanting a good amount of passenger and cargo space are well served by the Sonata. Tall passengers will find lots of leg room and no head room problems in the back, since the Hyundai doesn’t have one of those sloping rooflines that can limit room in the back. Storage spaces and cubbies are everywhere, and the trunk offers a generous 16.3 cu.-ft.
With a total passenger volume of 102.8 cu.-ft., the Ford Fusion falls short of the Hyundai by 4.3 cu.-ft. and, although there is more rear leg room in the Fusion, it doesn’t offer as much head room or as much front seat leg room as the Sonata. The trunk volume is almost the same, but the Hyundai still has the edge.
Fuel Economy: Hyundai Sonata
Lots of midsize sedans are offering four-cylinder engines these days, but when it comes to fuel efficiency, the Sonata really does impress. The Sonata Eco is powered by a highly efficient 1.6-liter turbo-four mated to a dual-clutch transmission, and rated at 28 mpg in the city, 36 mpg on the highway and 31 mpg combined.
The Fusion is one of the more economical cars in its class, but the fact the best EPA figures it can manage are now 23 mpg in the city, 34 mpg on the highway and 27 mpg combined shows how impressive the Sonata is.
Power and Performance: Ford Fusion
All Sonata models are front-wheel drive, and the engine lineup is exclusively four-cylinder. The base engine is a 2.4-liter unit producing 185 horsepower, while the Sonata Sport has a 2.0-liter turbo developing a lively 245 horsepower. A six-speed automatic transmission is standard in all cases, and there’s currently no option for all-wheel drive.
The base engine in the Fusion is a little lower on power, compared to the entry level unit in the Hyundai, but there’s also a 1.5-liter turbo-four and a 2.7-liter V-6 turbo. The Hyundai has the power advantage with its four-cylinder engines, but the 325 horsepower of its V-6 and available all-wheel drive definitely gives a win here to the Fusion.
Learn More about the Hyundai Sonata
It’s hard to criticize the Ford Fusion since it has set the standard in the segment for years. But the fact that the 2017 Hyundai Sonata gives it such a run for its money tells you how much Hyundai has changed. You’d likely be happy with either one of these fine cars, but the Sonata costs less and offers a few extras that the Fusion doesn’t–which gives it an edge.