2021 Volvo S60 vs. 2020 Ford Fusion Plug-In Hybrid

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/10/27

The S60’s pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

Both the S60 and Fusion Plug-In Hybrid have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The S60 has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid’s child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can’t know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.

The S60 has a standard Whiplash Protection System (WHIPS), which use a specially designed seat to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the WHIPS allows the backrest to travel backwards to cushion the occupants and the headrests move forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. At the same time the pretensioning seatbelts fire, removing slack from the belts. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

The S60 has standard Automatic Braking After Collision, which automatically apply the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The S60 offers optional CTA Auto Brake that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

The S60 offers all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.

The S60 offers an optional 360° Camera to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid only offers a rear monitor and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the front or sides.

Both the S60 and the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front and rear seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, rearview cameras, rear cross-path warning and driver alert monitors.

For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, its standard vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention system, with its optional vehicle-to-pedestrian front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Good” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the S60 the rating of “Top Pick” for 2020, a rating granted to only 32 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid last would have qualified as a “Top Pick” in 2017.

Warranty

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The S60 comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.

The S60’s corrosion warranty is 7 years longer than the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid’s (12 vs. 5 years).

Volvo pays for scheduled maintenance on the S60 for 3 years and 36,000 miles. Volvo will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Ford doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid.

Reliability

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To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the S60 has a standard 800-amp battery. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid’s 500-amp battery isn’t as powerful.

The battery on the S60 is in the trunk, which protects it from hot underhood temperatures that can degrade battery life. By keeping the S60’s battery 20 to 30 degrees cooler, its life is increased by years. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid’s battery is in the hot engine compartment.

Engine

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The S60 T5’s standard 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 55 more horsepower (250 vs. 195) than the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid’s 2.0 DOHC 4-cylinder hybrid. The S60 T6’s standard 2.0 turbo/supercharged 4-cylinder produces 121 more horsepower (316 vs. 195) than the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid’s 2.0 DOHC 4-cylinder hybrid. The S60 Recharge’s standard 2.0 turbo/supercharged 4-cylinder hybrid produces 205 more horsepower (400 vs. 195) than the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid’s 2.0 DOHC 4-cylinder hybrid.

As tested in Car and Driver the Volvo S60 is faster than the Ford Fusion Plug-In Hybrid:

S60 T5

S60 T6

Fusion

Zero to 30 MPH

2.3 sec

n/a

3.1 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

6.1 sec

5.2 sec

8.6 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

15.2 sec

12.8 sec

23 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

7 sec

6.1 sec

9.3 sec

Passing 30 to 50 MPH

3.5 sec

3.2 sec

4.6 sec

Passing 50 to 70 MPH

4.7 sec

4.2 sec

6 sec

Quarter Mile

14.6 sec

13.8 sec

16.6 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

98 MPH

103 MPH

86 MPH

Top Speed

131 MPH

131 MPH

104 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/10/27

The S60 AWD’s standard fuel tank has 1.9 gallons more fuel capacity than the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid (15.9 vs. 14 gallons).

Brakes and Stopping

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For better stopping power the S60’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid:

S60 T5

S60 Polestar

Fusion

Front Rotors

12.7 inches

14.6 inches

12.4 inches

Rear Rotors

11.9 inches

12.6 inches

12.4 inches

The S60’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid are solid, not vented.

The S60 stops much shorter than the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid:

S60

Fusion

70 to 0 MPH

163 feet

185 feet

Car and Driver

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the S60 has larger tires than the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid (235/45R18 vs. 225/50R17).

The S60’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 45 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid’s standard 50 series tires. The S60’s optional tires have a lower 40 series profile than the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid’s 50 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the S60 has standard 18-inch wheels. Only 17-inch wheels are available on the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid. The S60 offers optional 19-inch wheels.

The S60 has a standard space-saver spare (not available on Recharge) so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid; it requires you to depend on roadside assistance and your vehicle will have to be towed.

Suspension and Handling

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The S60 R-Design AWD handles at .94 G’s, while the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid Titanium pulls only .80 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

Chassis

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The Volvo S60 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs up to about 350 pounds less than the Ford Fusion Plug-In Hybrid.

The S60 is 4.4 inches shorter than the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid, making the S60 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Cargo Capacity

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The S60 has a much larger trunk than the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid (11.6 vs. 8.2 cubic feet).

Pressing a switch automatically lowers the S60’s optional rear seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

With its sedan body style, valet key, locking rear seatbacks and remote trunk release lockout, the S60 offers cargo security. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid’s non-lockable folding seat and non-lockable remote release defeat cargo security.

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the S60’s power trunk can be opened or closed just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid doesn’t offer a power or hands-free opening trunk.

Towing

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The S60 has a 2000 lbs. towing capacity. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid has no towing capacity.

Servicing Ease

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The S60 uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.

Ergonomics

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The S60 offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed and navigation instruction readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

Heated windshield washer nozzles are optional on the S60 to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts detailed tests on headlights for their range both straight ahead and in curves and to be certain they don’t exceed acceptable amounts of glare to oncoming drivers. The S60’s available headlights were rated “Good” by the IIHS, while the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid’s headlights are rated “Poor.”

In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The S60 offers available headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid doesn’t offer headlight washers.

To help drivers avoid possible obstacles, the S60 has standard cornering lights to illuminate around corners when the turn signals are activated. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid doesn’t offer cornering lights. The S60 also has standard adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle.

When the S60 is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.

Both the S60 and the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid offer available heated front seats. The S60 T6/Recharge also offers optional heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid.

The S60 Inscription offers optional massaging front seats in order to maximize comfort and eliminate fatigue on long trips. Massaging seats aren’t available in the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Volvo S60 offers an optional wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

The S60’s optional Park Assist Pilot can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Economic Advantages

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The S60 will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the S60 will retain 40.05% to 43.62% of its original price after five years, while the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid only retains 36.65%.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the S60 is less expensive to operate than the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid because typical repairs cost much less on the S60 than the Fusion Plug-In Hybrid, including $83 less for a timing belt/chain and $470 less for a power steering pump.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/10/27

J.D. Power and Associates rated the S60 second among compact premium cars in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The Fusion Plug-In Hybrid isn’t in the top three in its category.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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