Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2015 BMW 3 Series VS 2015 Ford Fusion Near Scottsdale, AZ

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2015 BMW 3 Series

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VS

2015 Ford Fusion

Safety Comparison

The 3 Series Sedan’s optional front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Fusion doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

The 3 Series Sedan has standard Active Head Restraints, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Active Head Restraints system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Fusion doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

The 3 Series Sedan offers optional City Collision Mitigation, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The Fusion offers an available collision warning system without the automated brake feature that would prevent or reduce the collision if the driver fails to react.

The 3 Series Sedan (except 320i) offers an optional Side and Top View Cameras to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Fusion only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

Both the 3 Series Sedan and the Fusion 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 and available all-wheel drive.

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

3 Series Sedan

Fusion

Passenger

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

HIC

150

254

Neck Injury Risk

32%

52%

Neck Stress

115 lbs.

197 lbs.

Neck Compression

44 lbs.

50 lbs.

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

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 BMW 3 Series Sedan is safer than the Ford Fusion:

3 Series Sedan

Fusion

OVERALL STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

3 Stars

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Spine Acceleration

38 G’s

46 G’s

Hip Force

513 lbs.

597 lbs.

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

Warranty Comparison

The 3 Series Sedan comes with a full 4 year/50,000 mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24 hour roadside assistance. The Fusion’s 3 year/36,000 mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.

The 3 Series Sedan’s corrosion warranty is 7 years longer than the Fusion’s (12 vs. 5 years).

BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the 3 Series Sedan for 4 years and 50,000 miles. BMW will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Ford doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Fusion.

Reliability Comparison

To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the 3 Series Sedan has a standard 900-amp battery. The Fusion’s 500-amp battery isn’t as powerful.

The battery on the 3 Series Sedan is in the trunk, which protects it from hot underhood temperatures that can degrade battery life. By keeping the 3 Series Sedan’s battery 20 to 30 degrees cooler, its life is increased by years. The Fusion’s battery is in the hot engine compartment.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2014 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that BMW vehicles are better in initial quality than Ford vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 8th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 8 more problems per 100 vehicles, Ford is ranked 16th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2014 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Ford vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 11th in reliability. With 10 more problems per 100 vehicles, Ford is ranked 17th.

Engine Comparison

The 3 Series Sedan has more powerful engines than the Fusion:

Horsepower

Torque

320i 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

180 HP

200 lbs.-ft.

328i 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

240 HP

255 lbs.-ft.

335i 3.0 turbo 6 cyl.

300 HP

300 lbs.-ft.

ActiveHybrid 3 3.0 turbo 6 cyl. hybrid

335 HP

330 lbs.-ft.

Fusion 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

175 HP

175 lbs.-ft.

Fusion 1.5 turbo 4 cyl.

181 HP

185 lbs.-ft.

Fusion 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

240 HP

270 lbs.-ft.

The 3 Series Sedan’s 2.0 turbo diesel produces 5 more horsepower (180 vs. 175) and 105 lbs.-ft. more torque (280 vs. 175) than the Fusion’s standard 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl. The 3 Series Sedan’s 2.0 turbo diesel produces 95 lbs.-ft. more torque (280 vs. 185) than the Fusion’s optional 1.5 turbo 4 cyl. The 3 Series Sedan’s 2.0 turbo diesel produces 10 lbs.-ft. more torque (280 vs. 270) than the Fusion’s optional 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

As tested in Road & Track the 320i 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. is faster than the Ford Fusion 4 cyl. (automatics tested):

3 Series Sedan

Fusion

Zero to 60 MPH

6.8 sec

9.1 sec

Quarter Mile

15.3 sec

17 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

88.9 MPH

84 MPH

As tested in Consumer Reports the 328i 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. is faster than the Ford Fusion 1.5 turbo 4 cyl. (automatics tested):

3 Series Sedan

Fusion

Zero to 30 MPH

2.6 sec

3.2 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

6.3 sec

9.2 sec

45 to 65 MPH Passing

4 sec

6.1 sec

Quarter Mile

14.9 sec

17 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

97.4 MPH

84.5 MPH

As tested in Motor Trend the 335i 3.0 turbo 6 cyl. is faster than the Ford Fusion 2.0 (automatics tested):

3 Series Sedan

Fusion

Zero to 60 MPH

4.4 sec

6.8 sec

Quarter Mile

13 sec

15.1 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

105.4 MPH

91.6 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

On the EPA test cycle the 328d RWD gets better fuel mileage than the Fusion w/Start/Stop 1.5 turbo 4 cyl. (32 city/45 hwy vs. 25 city/37 hwy).

On the EPA test cycle the 3 Series Sedan gets better fuel mileage than the Fusion:

3 Series Sedan

Fusion

2WD

n/a

22 city/34 hwy

2.5 4 cyl./Auto

2.0 turbo 4 cyl. (240 HP)/8-spd Auto

23 city/35 hwy

22 city/33 hwy

2.0 turbo 4 cyl./Auto

AWD

2.0 turbo 4 cyl. (180 HP)/8-spd Auto

23 city/35 hwy

22 city/31 hwy

2.0 turbo 4 cyl./Auto

2.0 turbo 4 cyl. (240 HP)/8-spd Auto

22 city/33 hwy

n/a

Regenerative brakes improve the 3 Series Sedan’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Fusion doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

Regardless of its engine, the 3 Series Sedan’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) Ford only offers an automatic engine start/stop system on the Fusion 1.5 ECOBoost.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the 3 Series Sedan’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the Fusion:

320i/328i

335i

Fusion

Front Rotors

12.3 inches

13.4 inches

11.8 inches

Rear Rotors

11.8 inches

13 inches

11.9 inches

The 3 Series Sedan’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Fusion are solid, not vented.

The 3 Series Sedan stops much shorter than the Fusion:

3 Series Sedan

Fusion

80 to 0 MPH

214 feet

216 feet

Road & Track

70 to 0 MPH

164 feet

175 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

107 feet

120 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

139 feet

145 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the 3 Series Sedan has larger standard tires than the Fusion (225/50R17 vs. 215/60R16).

The 3 Series Sedan’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Fusion S’ standard 60 series tires. The 3 Series Sedan’s optional 255/35R19 rear tires have a lower 35 series profile than the Fusion Titanium’s optional 40 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the 3 Series Sedan has standard 17-inch wheels. Smaller 16-inch wheels are standard on the Fusion S.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the 3 Series Sedan can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The Fusion doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The 3 Series Sedan offers an optional driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads. The Fusion’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

The 320i handles at .95 G’s, while the Fusion SE pulls only .83 G’s of cornering force in a Road & Track skidpad test.

The 335i xDrive executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.8 seconds quicker than the Fusion SE (25.6 seconds @ .75 average G’s vs. 27.4 seconds @ .58 average G’s).

Chassis Comparison

The 3 Series Sedan is 9.2 inches shorter than the Fusion, making the 3 Series Sedan easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the 3 Series Sedan’s available trunk can be opened just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The Fusion doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its trunk, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Ergonomics Comparison

The 3 Series Sedan (except 320i) offers an available heads-up display which projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts onto the windshield, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Fusion doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The 3 Series Sedan has a standard locking fuel door with a remote release located convenient to the driver. A locking fuel door helps prevent vandalism, such as sugar in the tank and fuel theft. The Fusion doesn’t offer a locking fuel door.

The 3 Series Sedan’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Fusion’s standard intermittent wipers change speed with vehicle speed, but can’t turn on and off or change speed based on changing rainfall.

Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the 3 Series Sedan to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The Fusion doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.

In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The 3 Series Sedan offers available headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The Fusion doesn’t offer headlight washers.

To help drivers avoid possible obstacles, the 3 Series Sedan offers optional cornering lights to illuminate around corners when the turn signals are activated. The Fusion doesn’t offer cornering lights. The 3 Series Sedan also offers optional adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle.

A power rear sunshade is optional in the 3 Series Sedan (except 320i) to help block heat and glare for the rear passengers. The Fusion doesn’t offer a rear sunshade.

The 3 Series Sedan’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Ford only offers heated mirrors on the Fusion SE/Titanium.

When the 3 Series Sedan is put in reverse, the passenger rearview mirror tilts from its original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirror into its original position. The Fusion’s mirror doesn’t automatically adjust for backing.

Both the 3 Series Sedan and the Fusion offer available heated front seats. The 3 Series Sedan also offers optional heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the Fusion.

The 3 Series Sedan has a standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. Dual zone air conditioning costs extra on the Fusion and isn’t available on the Fusion S.

The 3 Series Sedan’s standard automatic temperature control maintains the temperature you set, automatically controlling fan speed, vents and temperature to maintain a consistent, comfortable environment. The Fusion S doesn’t offer automatic air conditioning.

Both the 3 Series Sedan and the Fusion offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the 3 Series Sedan has standard rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The Fusion S doesn’t offer rear air conditioning vents, only heat vents.

Economic Advantages Comparison

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the 3 Series Sedan is less expensive to operate than the Fusion because it costs $675 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost less on the 3 Series Sedan than the Fusion, including $22 less for a fuel pump.

Recommendations Comparison

The BMW 3 Series Sedan has won recognition from these important consumer publications:

3 Series Sedan

Fusion

Consumer Reports® Recommends

TRUE

FALSE

Car Book “Best Bet”

TRUE

FALSE

The 3 Series was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Ten” for 20 of the last 20 years. The Fusion Hybrid hasn’t been picked since 2010.

The 3 Series was chosen as one of Automobile Magazine’s “All Stars” for 13 of the last 18 years. The Fusion Hybrid hasn’t been picked since 2010.

The 3 Series was selected by Automobile Magazine as their 2006 Car of the Year. The Fusion Hybrid has never been chosen.

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