The Ford Fusion is a four-door midsize sedan marketed and produced by the Ford Motor Company since the 2006 model year until the present. Available in either an FF or F4 layout, this Ford Fusion was produced after the discontinuation of the Contour. Despite the popularity over the 15 years of production, the Ford Fusion transmission problems dismayed some users from purchasing this car.
The Ford Fusion is available in either gasoline, electric, hybrid, or gas/plug-in electric hybrid variants over the two generations of Fusion. Production first began in early 2005, with the Fusion replacing the Mondeo. It is positioned between the Focus and the Taurus, providing an affordable and functional option in the market on a lineup.
The Fusion received numerous awards over the production lifespan, despite the prevalent and severe Ford Fusion transmission problems. In 206, the Fusion won the ‘Most Washable Car’ award and the ‘Total Quality’ award as the best-quality mid-size sedan on the market. A few years later in 2009, the Fusion won the ‘Motor Trend Car of the Year’ award and earned a spot on the ‘10 Best Cars’ list produced by Car and Driver magazine.
The Ford Fusion reviews were similar to the award- reviews gave high accolades and praise to this car model despite the frequency of Ford Fusion transmission problems. In December of 2005, Car and Driver ranked the Fusion as second place behind the Honda Accord. In 2009, Motor Trend awarded the Fusion Hybrid a spot above the Toyota Camry Hybrid, showing the dominance of the Fusion in various car categories.
Even though the Ford Fusion exceeded the car company’s expectations and sold 30,000 units during the beginning of 2016, the Ford Fusion transmission problems deterred some new car owners from buying this car in the first few model years.
Worst Ford Fusion Model Years
The worst model years of the Ford Fusion in terms of overall complaints and the prevalence of Ford Fusion transmission problems is the 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013 model years. The top three complaints across every single year of production is the steering failure in the 2011 Fusion and the power steering not working in the 2010 Fusion.
2010 Ford Fusion Problems
The main categories of concern in the Ford Fusion in 2010 focus on the steering, engine, transmission, and interior accessories. Regarding the transmission, owners complain about premature transmission failure, shifting issues, jerking during start-up, fluid leaking, and irregular shifting when decelerating.
Furthermore, throttle body concerns have led to various reports about a sudden and unintended deceleration and loss of power while driving. Lastly, this model year was the beginning of power steering failing during use.
To fix the transmission failure, owners of the 2010 Ford fusion have to pay to replace the transmission or replace the throttle body at around 63,000 miles. Owners will pay around $1,690 to repair the Ford Fusion transmission problems.
2011 Ford Fusion Problems
The following year the Ford Fusion had similar problems, with the top categories of concern being the steering, interior accessories, engine, AC and heater, and the transmission. The top transmission problems are the transmission slipping, the car shifting hard, a bumping sound when the car comes to a stop, lurching, and transmission failure.
The typical repair cost to fix the Ford Fusion transmission problems in the 2011 model is around $3,040 to replace the entire transmission at 50,000 miles.
2012 Ford Fusion Problems
The 2012 Ford Fusion has numerous reports of issues with the power steering. The electronic power assisted steering fails at an alarming rate, and the throttle body fails at a very early mileage. Not to mention, this car has numerous problems with transmission and interior accessories.
The top transmission issue is the car jerking when shifting, hesitating between shifts, antifreeze getting into the transmission fluid, and the car stalling during use. To fix the 2012 Ford Fusion transmission problems, owners should add transmission fluid to prevent any acceleration and shifting issues.
2013 Ford Fusion Problems
The final year of the Fusion that is the most problematic is the 2013 Fusion. Although this model year does not have the same power steering failure instances, owners still state that their car (and steering) fails between 60,000 and 100,000 miles. Other main categories of concern in this car model are the engine, transmission, interior accessories, and fuel system.
The main transmission issues in the 2013 Ford Fusion is the transmission not shifting properly, rough shifting, the shifter cable breaking, the car jerking while accelerating, the car not being able to shift into reverse, the clutch banging when backing up, the crank shifter stuck in park and a throttle body issue.
Fixing the transmission not working properly is an expensive fix – and is one of the costliest Ford Fusion transmission problems. One of the most common solutions is to replace the transmission, replace the shifter cable, or replace the temperature sensor valve at around 45,000 miles. Owners will typically have to pay around $1,570 to solve this problem.
2014 Ford Fusion Transmission Recall
One of the first recalls announced for the Ford Fusion affected the 2014-2015 Fusion vehicles that contained a 1.6-liter GTDI engine and a 6-speed manual transmission. Additionally, this recall affected 2015-2016 Fusion vehicles with a 1.0-liter engine and a 6-speed manual transmission.
These specific Fusion vehicles were susceptible to the clutch braking, resulting in damage to the transmission assembly and a potential fluid leak. If the fluid leaks and the clutch breaks, this could lead to further Ford Fusion transmission problems.
2015 Ford Fusion Hybrid Transmission Recall
Ford had to recall certain 2014-2015 Fusion cars made between July of 2013 to October of 2014. Certain Ford Fusion Hybrid vehicles produced during this period were susceptible to the key’s ability to be removed even when the transmission is not placed in the ‘Park’ position.
If this occurred, the car could roll away while in a higher gear, causing an increased risk of a crash and injury to the driver, passengers, and bystanders. Ford had to notify owners and dealers to pay to fix the Ford Fusion transmission problems free of charge.
2016 Ford Fusion Transmission Recall
Ford recalled nearly 260,000 of its 2013 to 2016 Fusion sedans due to gear selection and other related Ford Fusion transmission problems. A cable that connects the gear selector to the transmission can fail during use, causing the transmission to be in a different gear than what the shifter shows to the driver.
If the driver does not know what gear the car is in, they may improperly accelerate or decelerate at the wrong time. The driver could put the gear selector into the ‘Park’ position and remove the ignition key, even though the transmission may not actually be in the ‘Park’ position. If this occurs and the parking brake is not applied, the car could roll away and hit other cars, people, or harm the driver and passengers inside the Ford Fusion.
The recall is specific to the Ford Fusion cars with a 2.5-liter engine specifically built from April of 2013 until February of 2016. The problem focuses on the connector to the gear selector could fail without warning, causing the car to be at risk of rolling away. Ford was in charge of confirming a repair to ensure the owners do not have to pay to fix the Ford Fusion transmission problems.
2019 Ford Fusion Transmission Recall
A recall was announced in 2018 that dealt with certain 2013-2016 Ford Fusion vehicles that contained a six-speed automatic transmission. The item affected in these cars was the powertrain, automatic transmission, levers and linkages, and the floor shift mechanism. The bushing that connects the shifter cable to the transmission could wear down over time, leading to the bushing detaching completely from the transmission.
If the bushing is no longer connected to the transmission, the driver could move the shift lever to ‘Park’ and remove the key without the vehicle being placed in the ‘Park’ position. If this occurred, the car could potentially roll away.
Owners were not aware of these Ford Fusion transmission problems, since there was no warning message, alarm, or audible chime that alerted drivers. Ford had to notify owners of the issue and tell dealers to replace the shifter cable bushing free of charge.
2020 Ford Fusion Reliability
The 2020 Ford Fusion received a favorable score of #5 in the Midsize Cars category despite having notable Ford Fusion transmission problems. This model’s pros are the athletic handling, smooth ride, SYNC 3 infotainment system, large trunk space, and comfortable seats for long car drives.
The negatives of purchasing the 2020 Fusion are the lack of infotainment features, reduced fuel economy, and Ford Fusion transmission problems.
This car’s specs include 20-23 miles per gallon in the city and 29-34 miles per gallon earned on the highway. This car produces between 175 and 245 horsepower from the transmission, available in both front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive.
The 2020 Fusion also earned an 8.1 out of 10 on the Car US News Scorecard, earning a critics’ rating of 8.3 out of 10, a performance rating of 7.4, an interior score of 7.5, and a safety ranking of 9.3 out of 10.
Ford Fusion Transmission Cost
A transmission replacement is one of the most extensive and expensive replacements and jobs. The average cost of the transmission replacement typically ranges from around $1,800 to $3,400 for most cars.
If you decide to save some money, a used transmission ranges from about $800 to $1,500, while a rebuilt transmission charges between $1,100 to $2,800, and a remanufactured option runs between $1,300 and $1,300 for your Ford Fusion.
The Bottom Line
When looking at the Ford Fusion transmission problems, you need to know the most common issues in each model year. Furthermore, knowing the most recent Fusion’s reliability rating can give you an idea of how the company has fixed the issues from past model years to make the car safer and more reliable. Lastly, calculating the total transmission cost can help you prepare for any repairs or replacements needed in the future.