Stranded! - 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid Long-Term Road Test

2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid Long Term Road Test

2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid: Stranded!

November 03, 2010


A mile into my drive to Las Vegas for the 2010 SEMA show, I got on the throttle hard to pass another motorist. (The Fusion was already warmed up and it's not an especially quick car, so flooring it to get around somebody is not what I consider cruel or unusual, but then editors are a pretty cold, heartless lot.) Then, I noticed a warning light on the dash. I had already started to ease up on the throttle, but the car was easing up a little more than normal.

Soon, I couldn't go above 50 mph.


Oh, and there I was at the Interstate 10/405 interchange, so there was no place to exit.

It was obvious that the Fusion Hybrid had put itself in "limp home" mode, as available power continued to wane. I put the hazard lights on and pedaled it around the long ramp to the 405 North; my top speed was 23 mph on the downhill portion. So I wasn't going to make it that extra 1/2 mile to the Santa Monica Blvd exit. I pulled onto the shoulder and called Ford's roadside assistance.

I was on hold for about 11 minutes. All told, it took well over an hour for the tow truck to arrive.

That's not the flatbed pulled up behind me in the first photo. That's a Cal Trans truck, and the driver put a yellow decal on the Fusion Hybrid's back window to let passing highway patrol officers know that it was a disabled vehicle.

I should note that fellow editor Ron Montoya did most of the waiting for the tow truck. Ron arrived on the scene with an alternate road trip vehicle, so that I could get on the road to Vegas. Yeah, you're absolutely right, Ron is a good guy.

So why did things go bad with our long-term Ford Fusion Hybrid? Stay tuned for the exciting conclusion.

Erin Riches, Senior Editor @ 9,606 miles

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