With quality sedans like the Chevy Malibu and Ford Fusion, it’s no surprise the midsize segment has some of the fiercest competition in the industry. Having modern features and adopted styles that mirror best-selling SUVs, midsize cars are quickly gaining traction again thanks to these line-leaders in the march toward regained dominance. What makes the 2017 Chevy Malibu and its rival Ford Fusion two of the top commanders in this endeavor to retake the automotive market? Let’s find out how they compare in a friendly Malibu vs. Fusion skirmish.
The Malibu Handles & Performs Brilliantly
As was the case with last year’s model, the 2017 Chevy Malibu comes available in four trims: L, LS, LT, and Premier, with the Premier trim sitting at the head of the table. Also carried over is a longer wheelbase and more rear passenger space. Several new stylings and flourishes have been added—18-inch aluminum wheels, all-season tires, and more—but where the 2017 Malibu overpowers its rival Fusion lies under its striking hood.
A 1.5L ELOTEC® engine proves to be the Malibu’s special power, giving it some best-in-class fuel savings. Compared to the 2017 Ford Fusion S model’s subpar 23 MPG city/34 MPG highway (on its comparable 1.5L EcoBoost® engine), the Malibu shines brightly with an impressive 27 MPG city/36 MPG highway.
Fuel-efficiency numbers at the top of the lineups are even more telling; the 2.0L turbocharged engine on the Malibu Premier pumps out 250 horsepower and an estimated 22/33 MPG. The Fusion Platinum, on the other hand, meanders at just 231 horsepower with an estimated 20/29 MPG. In fact, the 2017 Fusion’s numbers are down from 2016 and are some of the poorest in this midsize segment.
Longer and lighter than the Fusion, The Chevy Malibu is also bolstered by a dynamic suspension that absorbs motion from even the bumpiest of roads. Large wheels, low-profile tires, and a rigid chassis help prep the Malibu for any challenge. The Fusion is fairly similar in its ride quality, although harsh driving conditions transfer more noticeably into its cabin. For this reason and because of its uninspired engine, the 2017 Ford Fusion leaves much to be desired.
Full of Features & Safe to Boot
The 2017 Malibu is equipped with some notable features that make it stand apart from its competition, especially the Fusion. Designed with a dual cockpit, this midsize wonder is a tech-packed sedan that’s perfect for drivers and passengers alike. Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and wireless mobile charging should make long road trips a breeze, and the integration of 4g LTE Wi-Fi connectivity is a game-changing addition that other midsize sedans should adopt.
The critically acclaimed Chevy MyLink infotainment system is at the center of the Malibu, and for good reason. Connecting with audio apps and OnStar services, this infotainment feature is as easy to use and highly functional as it is handsome in its presentation. Swooping slightly out toward the driver, the screen is visible without craning your neck or taking your eyes off the road.
Both sedans offer lane-keeping assist, a feature you’d expect to be helpful, but the Ford’s version can be a nuisance thanks to its insistence to abruptly tug the car when drifting. Other standard or optional features not found on the Fusion Platinum include wheel locks, a rear parking aid, auxiliary power outlets, telematics navigations, and a rear body airbag.
The Affordable 2017 Malibu is Now Available in Kansas City
At the top of each model’s lineup you’re sure to find stylish designs, features, and functionality, but what about price? The 2017 Malibu—the same car we’ve just shown to have better features, safety, and fuel-efficiency numbers—is priced up to 20% lower than the Ford Fusion. And if you pair the Malibu with Chevy incentives from our new and used car dealership near Kansas City, you’ll save even more on one of the best midsize sedans on the market.
In addition to the new Malibu, our inventory also stocks all of the freshest Chevy models, certified pre-owned cars, and some of the most affordable used cars for sale in Lee’s Summit. If you live in the areas of Independence, Blue Springs, or Kansas City, come check out our newly delivered Malibu cars at 945 SE Oldham Parkway in Lee’s Summit. Call the McCarthy Chevrolet sales team at (816) 875-4678 to schedule a test drive, and we’ll be happy to get you into the driver’s seat of a 2017 Malibu.