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2008 Ford Fusion Problems: Know the Red Flags 

2008 Ford Fusion Problems: Know the Red Flags 

With its sporty look, the 2008 Ford Fusion may seem like a great used car to buy even though it has had its fair share of problems. In addition to its three recalls, it has eight areas of common problems. Think about sending the car to the junkyard rather than put your safety at risk.

Auto Repairs Are EXPENSIVE


The majority of problems with the 2008 Ford Fusion included the brakes, engine, and transmission. You might expect brake problems in a car this old, but some of them were out of the normal realm. Engine problems, as well as transition problems, are pricey repairs, especially for an older vehicle.

Brake problems were the most reported problem and caused safety issues related to the brakes not functioning, the emergency brake sticking, and premature brake wear. And yet, the brake is one of the most important safety features of the modern vehicle. 

This blog discusses common issues that occur in the 2008 Ford Fusion and where applicable, the cost estimate for repairs and replacements. The price of the estimates depends on the location, availability of parts, and severity of the damage.

Learning more about the 2008 Ford Fusion is certain to help you make the right choice about this car. If you currently own one, it might be time to send it to the junkyard. If you’re thinking about buying one, you might reconsider after reading up on the car’s reviews.

2008 Ford Fusion Brake Problems

The problem receiving the most complaints about the 2008 Ford Fusion is related to the brakes not functioning properly, ABS failure, emergency brake issues, and premature brake wear.

Even before the 2008 model, Ford Fusion drivers reported sudden brake malfunction around 115,000 miles. 

Typically, the pedal went all the way to the floor and would require time until it came back. To fix this problem, owners had to replace the brakes or the hydraulic control unit costing an average of $1,200.

ABS (antilock brake system) failure began in the 2008 Ford Fusion at around 80,000 miles. Sometimes, ABS would work, and sometimes it would not, causing significant safety concerns. Replacing the ABS means replacing the entire part for around $1,200.

Drivers also reported the emergency brake would sometimes become stiff and not move at all, normally around 80,000 miles. This could be fixed by replacing the calipers for around $350. This might not seem like a big deal to some, but the e-brake is important, especially if you live in a city with many hills.

As if those brake issues weren’t enough, drivers also reported that they were frequently replacing rotors, brakes, and calipers. Despite replacing them, the brakes continued to wear down. Depending on what needs to be replaced, the repairs cost between $300 and $900.

The usual brake maintenance is to be expected during a car’s lifetime, which lasts an average of twelve years. A car from 2008 is about 13 years old, however. For the car to have had so many problems before it hit twelve years indicates something more than routine wear and tear is at play.

2008 Ford Fusion Interior Issues Add Up

Normally, when we think of major car repair we don’t think about the interior unless you are the owner of a 2008 Ford Fusion. Interior problems included dashboard deterioration, the door latches not working properly, and upholstery falling apart. Not only is this ugly, it could become dangerous.

At around 80,000 miles, the dashboard began buckling on the passenger side. Even when glued back in, the problem was not resolved. The average cost for dashboard replacement is $2,000. Imagine having this warped dashboard when you drive.

All model years of the Ford Fusion present door lock issues which eventually warranted a recall on certain vehicles. The door latch or door lock had to be replaced at around 80,000 miles for about $160. This may seem like “no big deal,” but if the car door swings open on the express way, it’s serious.

Although not a direct safety issue, the interior upholstery began falling apart around 60,000 miles. Because it occurred at such low mileage, it was incredibly frustrating for owners. Many car owners hadn’t even finished making payments on the vehicle just to see it coming apart at the seams.

2008 Ford Fusion Engine Problems

Besides transmission problems, engine problems are the worst problem for any car owner, especially if you own a 2008 Ford Fusion. The check engine light frequently illuminated, the engine coils burned, and the vehicle accelerated randomly.

Despite repairs and maintenance, the check engine light came on repeatedly. This fix meant repairing the circuits which happened around 70,000 miles. This little light can be a nuisance. Not only does it mean something’s wrong with the car, but you can’t pass the Illinois Emissions Test with it on.

Some drivers complained about the vehicle suddenly not moving, which began at around 90,000 miles. The diagnosis was a burnt coil which cost a whopping $1,850 to replace. Most cars need a tune up at this point, not a whole new coil.

Sometimes drivers reported the opposite of the vehicle not moving: sometimes it would accelerate although unintended. When they tried to stop the vehicle, it would stall. This happened around 84,000 miles. This caused dangerous situations in many cases as drivers lost control of the vehicle.

2008 Ford Fusion Transmission Problems

2008 Ford Fusion owners also reported transmission issues including the transmission slipping, rough shifting, and odd noises.

The transmission slipping happened without warning at around 70,000 miles. The clutch plate or transmission needed to be replaced which costs around $4,500. Again, this type of repair at this early in the car’s lifetime is atypical.

There were also issues with shifting at around 80,000 miles. Again, this required complete transmission replacement for around $4,500.

Sometimes drivers reported an odd noise coming from the transmission although there were no additional problems. This happened around 90,000 miles.

2008 Ford Fusion Heating and Air-Conditioning Issues

Most drivers rely on heating and air-conditioning in their vehicles to drive comfortably but 2008 Ford Fusion drivers could not. There were issues with the heater core, the heater blowing cold air, and the opposite: the AC blowing hot air. 

In certain climates, the heating and AC aren’t huge problems. However, in cites like Chicago, where the winters are frigid and the summers are sweltering, the repair could be necessary.

The majority of heating and cooling issues stemmed from one or more leaks in the heater core occurring around 114,000 miles. A heater core replacement costs around $1,000. In some cases, the air sensor needed to be replaced for about half the cost: $500.

Shocking 2008 Ford Fusion Electrical Problems

Although minimal compared to other complaints, the 2008 Ford Fusion also had electrical issues. 

Many drivers reported that the dome light would not go off when it was supposed to. This often means a sensor or bulb needs to be replaced. The average cost is $150. 

Sometimes, especially in smaller cities, finding a mechanic who deals specifically with electric repairs can be tough, making this minor problem even more inconvenient.

2008 Ford Fusion Window Problems

Similarly, the 2008 Ford Fusion also had window problems. The most common problem was water leaking from the sunroof which occurred around 100,000 miles.

Leaking water can lead to mildew and mold, which makes the car smell bad. Nowadays, it wouldn’t even make sense to sell this car as it would be better suited for the junkyard. But at some other point in time, this was causing potential buyers to turn their nose the other way. 

2008 Ford Fusion Paint and Body Problems

Just like the upholstery issues, the 2008 Ford Fusion had another issue that did not directly relate to safety but was just as annoying: body and paint issues. Paint began chipping from the vehicle’s bumper at around 60,000 miles. If the paint could be matched, it only required repainting the part.

That being said, car shoppers should remember that the paint does more than just make a vehicle look pretty. It also makes the car safer as the paint is an exterior shell that prevents rust on the car’s body. These little problems add up later on as structural issues might evolve, especially thirteen years later.

2008 Ford Fusion Recalls

It is no surprise that with so many problems, there are three recalls for the 2008 Ford Fusion.

  • The front passenger-side inflator module was recalled due to a possible rupture. An inflator rupture may cause metal fragments to enter the vehicle injuring anyone inside. That’s a scary situation to imagine.
  • Some brake control unit valves were not closing properly, meaning the vehicle will not brake properly and could result in a crash. 
  • Additionally, some of the floor mats were shifting while driving and interfered with the accelerator pedal. This meant the vehicle moved forward at unintended speeds and could result in a crash.

If you own a 2008 Ford Fusion or are interested in buying one, you should check the status of recalls within the vehicle. To do so, check with a local Ford dealership. They will run the vehicle identification number (VIN) against a database to see which recalls have already been done.

Is the 2008 Ford Fusion Reliable?

The 2008 Ford Fusion could be reliable if properly maintained and all recalls were repaired. When released, the vehicle was sporty and well-equipped, although as you have read, it has its fair share of issues. Today, however, many mechanics and car experts would be tempted to say no.

The Ford Fusion comes in a variety of models with front-wheel drive, all-wheel drive, manual or automatic transmissions, and different engine sizes. The possibility of upgrades makes it ideal for a car hobbyist, but again, with its problems, it may be more headache than value.

For the everyday Joe, we would recommend passing on this car (even as a gift).

How Much Should I Pay for a 2008 Ford Fusion?

The price of a 2008 Ford Fusion depends entirely on its upkeep. If the car was well maintained and regularly serviced, it will more than likely cost more.

Repairs, replacements, and recalls also play a factor. If many of the repairs required replacement that the previous owner(s) made, many of the car parts will be pretty close to brand new. This applies to recalls as well.

Additionally, if the car has low mileage, it could also cost more.

When released, the 2008 Ford Fusion base model costs $18,135. Today, a used 2008 Ford Fusion with 100,000 miles costs around $4,000.

The car has many issues that affect its purchase price and value.

2008 Ford Fusion Problems: What to Do Now

If you were thinking about purchasing a 2008 Ford Fusion, this article likely made you change your mind. 

If you are a current owner of a 2008 Ford Fusion, you may be having a panic attack wondering when your car will break down.

The good news is you have some options. If you own a 2008 Ford Fusion, it may be time to part with the car by sending it to the junkyard. If the car is unsafe to drive, call for tow service and ask a friend to drive you to the junkyard where you will receive cash payment after a quick inspection and title handover. 

If you can’t part with the vehicle, at least check with the dealership about your vehicle’s recall status. 

Then ask your mechanic for a full inspection. It’s better to be proactive about repairs and replacement instead of stranded on the side of a road with a dead car.