Hybrid Rivals: Ford Fusion vs Chevrolet Malibu vs Toyota Camry
There's a reason why midsized Sedans are selling like hotcakes.
There's room for five.
Plenty of And they just seem to be what America wants.
Well, what if you want more?
Well, no worries, because today we have three very popular mid-size hybrid sedans.
The Toyota Camry, the Chevy Malibu, and the Ford Fusion.
We're gonna put them through some real world testing, but first up is a half-mile drag race.
Three, two, one, go.
See you, suckers!
I so have him!
Shoot, shoot here he comes.
I wasn't looking for it.
Come on, come on, come on, no, no!
I can't believe I just lost a wave.
So if you're buying a hybrid, gas mileage is probably of utmost importance, so we're gonna take all three of these on, let's say, a ten mile urban jaunt.
And at the end, we'll let you know the miles per gallon of each car.
The Chevy Malibu has got a 1.8 liter gas engine, which is good for 122 horsepower and 129 pound feet of torque.
But the good folks at Chevy had taken some of the cool things out of the Chevy Volt, such as the two electric engines, the regenerative braking system, and the transmission, and that's gonna get my total power output to 182 horsepower and 277 bound feet of torque.
Now that's what allowed me to go so fast off the line on the drag race yesterday but just not enough horsepower to win.
Toyota pretty much set the standard for hybrids with the Prius.
But I've always like the Camry better because they've got a much more potent drivetrain then this.
I've got the 2016 Toyota Camry hybrid here.
It's got a two point five liter [UNKNOWN] engine and a 105 kilowatt electric motor.
That combined with the total of 200 horsepower, that's really the sweet spot in the Camry lineup as far as I'm concerned, and it's way more powerful than the Prius.
Obviously in the drag race, this car just toasted the other one.
Did really well with that horsepower, and even with that 200 horsepower, this car still gets 40 miles per gallon in the city.
38 on the highway, and they also call it 40 miles combined.
And that's just immense fuel economy for a car of this power, this size.
Now the fusion hybrid is powered by a two liter [UNKNOWN] cycle four banger.
That That's mated with an electric motor and a lithium ion battery pack to make it's hybrid power train.
Total power is gonna be stated at 188 horsepower which is about middle of the road with the three cars we've brought today.
It's EPA fuel economy is about 42 miles per gallon combined, which is again pretty much on par with the rest of the competition.
What I really like about the Chevy Malibu is that it's very comfortable.
The seats are comfortable, and the suspension is tuned in such a way so that it's Equally at home on the main city streets where the pavement is a little rougher or out on some longer sweeping turns where you can really put your foot into it.
The steering on this seems to be a little light especially at parking lot speeds.
It does [UNKNOWN] up when you go a little bit faster.
I really like something that's got a little more pep to it and this is just really light.
The regenerative brakes are very linear, they're not like other hybrids where they're really grabby.
Instead, I have a lot of confidence under that my foot, that the car is gonna stop when I want it to stop.
The drive character in the Camry Hybrid is in fact good.
It's just feels a little loose, a little vague.
You know, it's comfortable enough.
But the suspension kinda feels wobbly.
You feel like you're up pretty high and everything's moving around a little too much.
It doesn't really feel as engaged with the road as I would like.
The Malibu is available with loads of tack.
Now if you get the driver confidence 2 package, which unfortunately I don't have but that comes with adaptive cruise control and automatic parking.
Still even when the driver confidence one package, I've got lane keep assists, blind spot monitoring, forward warning Everything that you need to really keep your drive safe.
I do wish that the screen was tilted towards me just a little bit because I feel like I have to take my eyes off the road a lot in order to look at it.
The navigation inputs are pretty quick but you do have to enter your address be at three different boxes.
Now, a lot of us are use to Google Maps where the one box entry.
I feel like manufacturers should know that.
They should make it easier for me to enter any kind of destination that I want.
As for tech in the Camry Hybrid, I've gotta depth of cruise control.
I've also got blind spot monitors on each of my mirrors so I can see if there's cars in the lane next to me.
I don't have an automated parking function here so, this may be a little behind the times as far as that stuff goes.
With the navigation head unit.
I like this one.
It's kind of basic.
But it's secret weapon is Toyota Entune.
So, I've got the Entune app running on my phone that's connect to the head unit via bluetooth and that enables Online destination search.
And a few other apps here, so that's really convenient.
I don't have CarPlay, I don't have Android Auto.
But that untethered application hookup is really nice because with CarPlay and Android Auto you do have to plug your phone into the care.
The place that the Ford Fusion really stands out in my mind is in technology.
Ford really sort of led the way with a lot of really cool features, like automatic parallel parking, an adaptive cruise control and this new Fusion brings all of those features to the table.
A lot of the competition really caught up but some like the Camry, really haven't.
Also Ford really became a tech leader when it debuted it's sync system so many years ago and over the course of three generations it's become a really good infotainment system.
Sync three is very crisply rendered, very well organized and it is very responsive to all of your input The organizational structure of all of the options and things have just gotten a lot more intuitive, so you'll never really find yourself getting lost in this system.
Now, we don't have navigation today, but that's no problem, because when you get sync three, you also get Android Auto and Apple Car Play compatibility, so you can just plug your phone up with the USB cable and bring your own navigation.
Saves you about $795 off of the bottom line right there.
Now we're coming in on the home stretch of our ten mile urban circuit in the Ford Fusion hybrid.
And what's interesting is that at 9.2 miles about 6.3 of those miles have been fully electrically powered.
The Ford Fusion really likes to use its electric motor to maximize its fuel economy.
As a result, I'm sitting at around 47.5 miles per gallon, significantly better than what the EPA thought that I would do for this.
As I come to the end of our ten mile circuit, looks like I've got 41.9 miles per gallon.
That's almost 2 better than the EPA setting.
That's That's really good.
Well we are at the end of our little jaunt here.
And it looks like I am getting about 49.8 combined miles per gallon.
And that beats the EPA rating of 46, so go Malibu!
While the Malibu was the clear winner in our short test, it also bested the Camry and Fusion during our week of driving.
Our text was also backed up by the EPA fuel numbers the Malibu get 47 miles per gallon in the city, while the Fusion falls a bit behind at 43 and the Camry comes up last at 42.
You know you would think for a three speed daemon that we would be all over the Toyota Camry Hybrid but that didn't Really seem to be the case.
Well, the Toyota Camry Hybrid whipped everybody else in the drag race.
200 horsepower, that's what you need for that kind of test.
But the driving dynamics were a little big vague.
They weren't quite as nice as the other cars.
And the tech feels like a generation behind these other cars as well.
Now, I think when it comes to driving dynamics, I think we all really enjoyed driving Antoine's Ford Fusion.
Yeah, the Ford's got some of the best driving dynamics, which s really important for a car you have to drive every day.
This is the one that I'd want to take to work if I had to drive Myself.
Plus, the Ford's got the best tech in the class, and of the cars that we've got here today.
But everything else about it felt pretty middle of the road, including the build quality, the looks, and the fuel economy, which is gonna be the most important thing for a hybrid sedan.
I think the Chevy wins out there.
It does, it's got the highest EPA fuel rating of the three, it's got great looks.
It's got decent road qualities, and it won the coveted first loser in the drag race, which is still very respectable.
So the winner of this episode of Road Show Rivals is the 2017 Chevy Malibu Hybrid.