The Ten Worst Things About the 2017 Ford Fusion Hybrid

From the title of this article, you might think that I hate my 2017 Ford Fusion Hybrid. But actually, the opposite is true. I love my Fusion and I highly recommend it! Read my article, Top Ten Things I Love About My 2017 Ford Fusion Hybrid.

But, no car is perfect, and there are definitely some things that Ford could do to improve in the Fusion (or, in many cases, things that Ford should have left alone and not changed).

But without any further ado, here’s are the top ten things worst things about the 2017 Ford Fusion Hybrid:

1. No Spare Tire

It sounds ludicrous, but more and more cars today are being sold without a spare tire. If you remove the trunk liner of the Ford Fusion – surprise! No spare tire:

Fusion tire repair kit
The spare tire has been replaced by a tire repair kit

Instead, you get a Styrofoam insert with a tire repair kit. But, if your sidewall is badly slashed, the repair kit is useless. AAA doesn’t carry spare tires. At that point, your only option is to get towed and hope the shop carries your size tire.

I ended up buying a Fusion spare tire on eBay.

2. The Rotary Dial Shifter

In the 2017 model, Ford decided to eliminate the gear shift lever and replace it with a wimpy rotary dial. This is an industry trend that saves space, cuts costs, and allows the car to have the feature of shifting itself into park when you turn it off.

Fusion rotary dial shifter
Fusion rotary dial shifter

While those are beneficial features, the gear shift lever was one of the last remaining bastions of direct man-to-car connection. Even though I always drove automatics, grabbing the shift lever and rocking it into position used to give me a tiny bit of macho satisfaction.

Operating the rotary dial shifter, on the other hand, is about as macho as toe-nail painting. Turning the dial into the “Drive” position just does not satisfy. Even worse, my muscle memory has me still reaching for the non-existent shift lever whenever I need to shift from park to reverse.

3. The Electronic Handbrake Switch

Similarly, yanking on the hand brake after a long day of defensive driving used to be a mild form of stress relief for me. I could take out my aggression by really yanking on that thing.

But, Ford has replaced the mechanical lever with an unsatisfying small electronic flip switch which probably saves space. But bleh… How I yearn for good old-fashioned mechanical controls that actually took some muscle to operate!

Ford Fusion parking break switch
Ford Fusion parking brake switch

4. Too Much Junk in the Trunk

Hybrids require batteries that must be stored somewhere. Since the Fusion hybrid was derived from the gas-only version, space for batteries was an afterthought and they just threw the batteries in a big step in the trunk:

2017 Ford Fusion Hybrd trunk
2017 Ford Fusion Hybrid trunk

A big chunk (4 sq. feet) of trunk space is taken up by the batteries. But this is nothing compared to the batteries in the Fusion Energi which take up nearly the whole trunk volume.

5. The Length

The 2017 Ford Fusion is a long car.  It’s 14 inches longer than my 2006 BMW 325i. Living in a crowded city, that is definitely a minus when it comes to parallel parking in tight spaces.

Ford Fusion Hybrid SE side view
Ford Fusion Hybrid SE side view

6. The Massive Key Fob

Ford Fusion key fob
The Ford Fusion key fob is ridiculously large

The Ford key fob is huge, adding a (second?) bulge in your pants if you put it in your pocket.

7. The Side-View Mirror Option

My Fusion came with side-view mirrors that had a smaller “blind spot” bubble mirror in the upper outer corner.

Fusion side-view mirrors
Fusion side-view mirrors

This is supposed to be an added feature and some people do like these, but my beef with it is that it requires me to re-focus my eyes to use. As I get older, focusing my eyes is getting slower so this is a pain. In practice, I don’t use it. It’s actually a hindrance because the reflections in it are a distraction. I’m looking to do an after-market replacement someday with just a plain rear-view mirror with no cutout.

8. The Rear

Ford Fusion Hybrid SE rear
2017 Ford Fusion Hybrid SE rear

Ford has done a great job of improving the look of the front of the Fusion over the years, but the look of the rear has not kept up, in my opinion. For 2017, they added some chrome trim to the rear which doesn’t really do it for me.  What do you think?

9. The Antenna

Someone on the Ford Fusion Facebook Page said that the antenna on the Fusion makes it look like a toy remote-controlled car. Being used to the BMW “shark-fin” antenna, I agree the Fusion antenna is not sexy.

On a more practical note, it causes a “tent pole” effect when you try to put a car cover on, and could possibly break if the cover is pulled hard.

Happily, there is an easy fix for this.  You can get an after-market shark-fin antenna for your Fusion! This is on my “to do” list. People tell me it’s easy to install and works well. Be sure to order the correct color.

10. Snow Chains Not Allowed

Ford does not approve of using snow chains on the Ford Fusion which I think is ludicrous. When I asked the Ford salesman, “how am I supposed to go skiing?”, his reply was, “rent a car”. So, if you’re planning to go skiing with your Fusion, you might want to look elsewhere.

Now See What I Love About the Ford Fusion

You’ll notice that none of these are fatal flaws; most are pretty nit-picky in fact, and some have after-market fixes. I believe the Fusion Hybrid is fundamentally a really good car; see my article on the Top Things I Love About My Ford Fusion. It drives great, looks great, and has amazing gas mileage! I’m really happy with it so far, but there’s always room for improvement.

What do you think of the Ford Fusion Hybrid? What do you like about it? What are your gripes? Leave a comment or question below. – Brian

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Gus Montoya
Gus Montoya
4 years ago

I have a 2018 hybrid fusion ! This past month it was in the shop twice with the same problem! The gear knob would not turn into gear ! And was locked while car was on! Ford charged us $ 300.00 dollars to do a diagnostic test on it and said it was a switch. And it would be another $200 for the switch. Two weeks later we had the same problem then they said we must’ve spilled something in the dial which is right next to the cupholder ! Has anyone else ever had this problem.?

4 years ago

I am trying to find out where to jack my 2016 fusion hybrid up (jack points). I bought a standard fusion donut and it fits fine in the well when you remove the Styrofoam liner. The typical weld flanges are not visible under the car.
where do I jack?

Brian Shim
4 years ago
Reply to  Philip

Hi Philip,

I found the 2016 Fusion manual here:

If you jump to the “Wheels and Tires” section, it says the jack points are identified by triangle markings in the molding. I confirmed I have them in my 2017. Let me know what you think.


Don Roles
Don Roles
4 years ago

Personally I like the rear view mirror inserts. I’m getting older too, and it’s a heck of a lot nicer to not have to turn my head for a lane-check… not that that’d do any good anyhow given the size of those C-pillars.

5 years ago

I’m sitting at home while I wait for the tire center to tell me if they can fix my tire because no donut tire to get to work! LOL. Your article came up when I was googling if I could buy a spare.

All of the things you mention are things I’ve said to myself. What’s up with that giant key? And refocusing my eyes to use the tiny mirror! I had a 2012 before, they apparently redesigned the back end just enough so now I can’t use my bike rack (no flat area)

5 years ago

I love my 2017 Ford Fusion Energi Hybrid but when the brakes get wet from rainy roads..they must rust up quickly and they make a horrible rubbing sound from sticking as I back up. I’ve reported it to the dealer service and they say that’s because of the material they are made if. Very embarrassing to have your new car make such a loud annoying sound. !!!!!!!!

5 years ago

Does 2014 ford fusion se HYBRID come with Wheel Jack kit?

Norman Baraz
Norman Baraz
5 years ago

I had a problem with a 28″ Wiper blades on my 2017 Ford Fusion SE hybrid they would get stuck in the upper position. Well I Downsized to a 26″ wiper blade, the problem was solved. They do not does not get stuck and it still covers the full front window. What was ford thinking?

6 years ago

Brian-> Did you actually try out the spare on your car? both front and Rear? I have a 2014 Energi and I have not been able to find a spare that will fit properly. I get drag marks on the inside of the wheel where the break calipers. DO you have a link to the ebay sight where you purchased your spare?