Keith Griffin's picture

Ford Fusion Selected as Best Used Car by WheelsTV, NEMPA

A jury comprised of members of the New England Motor Press Association (NEMPA) and staff from has selected the 2006-2009 Ford Fusion as the best used car on the market.

To receive the designation as best used car on the market, of Previously Owned Vehicle as the award is more formally called, the Ford Fusion had to beat out competition from previous generation Toyota Highlander, Toyota Prius, BMW 3 series, Honda Civic, Jaguar XF and Chevrolet Silverado 1500, which were all semi-finalists for the award by virtue of winning their individual categories. A complete list is below.

Normally you read a lot about judging the best car and truck of the year through venues like the North American Car and Truck of the Year as well as the Internet Truck and Car of the Year that I founded a couple years back that combines expert voting from Internet automotive writers and consumers as well.

But Jim Barisano has come up with a whole new spin on things. His company,, based in Acton, Mass., partners with dealerships across the country to produce video reviews of all the new vehicles on the market. In the 18 years or so he has been doing this, a significant video library has been built up. It's a great resource for used car shoppers who want to quickly find out info on a car without having to search through various websites.

His writers and analysts have an in-depth knowledge of the car industry. Combined with the expertise of the New England Motor Press Association, where I am vice president, we put our heads together and came up with a winner as the best used vehicle on the market: the 2006 to 2009 Ford Fusion.

A lot of factors went into our decision making process. A ballot was sent out to more than 30 journalists from throughout New England. Then we whittled things down to three semi-finalists in various categories. After much debate we selected the Ford Fusion.

Despite the features of the other noteworthy units, the 2006-2009 Ford Fusion emerged as the clear leader because it’s practical, handsome and a good value. Barisano elaborated on those points. “While the ’06 to ’09 Ford Fusions received numerous accolades when new, the true test of a well-crafted automobile is its ability to provide solid, dependable transportation over years of service and many thousands of miles of day-to-day driving. This, the ’06 to ’09 Ford Fusion has done commendably," Barisano noted.

“And while the Ford Fusion may not power a buck-saw, hay baler or conveyor for filling corn cribs as the Model T once did, the Fusion carries on Ford’s tradition of solid, long-term performance as one of the most highly regarded pre-owned vehicles on America’s roads today,” he continued.

Bill Collins, general manager of Ford East region communications, accepted the award on behalf of the automaker. “Ford is committed to designing and manufacturing cars that provide dependable service to our owners,” Collins noted. “We are honored to receive this year’s POV of the Year Award from WheelsTV and NEMPA in recognition of the high level of consumer satisfaction that the ’06 to ’09 Ford Fusion has achieved.”

One thing I have consistently liked about the older Fords from the 2006-2009 model years is the simplicity of the interior design and the Fusion is no exception. The Fusion also boasts a roomy, comfortable interior that welcomes grownups in the back seat for extended distances.

Fusion offers a choice of Ford's 2.3-liter Duratec 23 I-4 or 3.0-liter Duratec 30 V-6. Both feature all-aluminum construction, dual overhead cams, four valves per cylinder, intake Variable Cam Timing (i-VCT) and electronic throttle control to deliver smooth, spirited performance, along with good fuel economy and emissions ratings.

The award was accepted at NEMPA's annual awards dinner at MIT – and what an award it was. Barisano took an old Model T steering wheel and mounted it for what has to be one of the physically biggest awards I've ever seen.

Beyond the accolade for the Fusion, the selection panel honored six other vehicles in various segments, including:

  • • Green Car: 2004-2009 Toyota Prius, described as fuel efficient, safe and sensible.
  • • SUV: 2007-2010 Toyota Highlander, hailed as versatile, capable and spacious.
  • • Small Car: 2006-2009 Honda Civic, seen as reliable, attractive and frugal.
  • • Sporty Car: 2005-2009 BMW 3 Series, highlighted as nimble, potent and iconic.
  • • Luxury Car: 2009-2010 Jaguar XF, viewed as stylish, unique and lavish.
  • • Light Truck: 2007-2010 Chevrolet Silverado 1500, billed as rugged, dependable and powerful.

As always, take awards like this with a grain of salt. Before buying any used car, make sure you get an independent pre-purchase inspection done by a certified mechanic (and not your spouse's Uncle Louie who tinkers with cars).

Overall, though, the 2006 to 2009 Ford Fusion is going to be a great choice to consider for a used car. There's a reason it's the Pre-Owned Vehicle of the Year. It's great transportation.

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