Ford Fusion In Snow & Winter Driving (Explained)

With swanky looks, a spacious interior and peppy engine performance, the Ford Fusion remains one of the favorite sedans in America.

This midsize sedan is practical and family-friendly, boasting decent storage, innovative infotainment, and comfortable seating.

But does it drive well in winter? Find out below.

Here is the short answer about whether the Ford Fusion is good for snow and winter driving:

The Fusion has optional Intelligent AWD that makes driving in winter easier and safer. Fusions have features, such as Traction Control, ABS, and Brake Assist designed to reduce the dangers of winter travel. Only a few sedans can deliver safe driving in winter—and the Ford Fusion is one of them.

Is a Ford Fusion Good in the Snow?

Older sedans were poor in winter conditions, especially snow. But modern-day sedans such as the Fusion are more advanced and can drive in snow older models could only dream of.

The Ford Fusion goes further by offering optional all-wheel-drive. This enhances Fusion’s ability to handle snow and cement its reputation as a highly adaptable model.

When driving in snow, the AWD ensures your Fusion never loses traction. If the AWD system detects wheels slipping in snow, it automatically sends power to those wheels to restore traction.

Despite this, the Fusion’s minimal ground clearance affects its snow driving capabilities. Unless you want to get stuck, you shouldn’t drive your sedan in deep snow. The Fusion’s reduced ride height makes it easy for snow to fill up the wheel wells and force stalling.

What Features Will Improve Winter Driving?

The Fusion is hardly the best vehicle for navigating slippery pavement in winter—you have trucks and SUVs for that. However, if you’re looking for a sedan that can ferry your family safely through winter, the Fusion is ideal.

Here are some features that enhance the Fusion’s driving and handling qualities in winter:

Anti-Lock Brake System & Electronic Brakeforce Distribution

Have you ever “locked up” your wheels while driving? Then you probably understand why it’s important to forestall this problem.

Wheel lock happens when the wheels receive too much brake pressure, causing them to seize. Braking hard in an emergency stop will increase brake pressure and lead to wheel lockup. And if your wheels should ever lock mid-transit, your car can skid off the road or even crash.

Driving in wintry conditions increases your chances of experiencing wheel lock. Braking on slippery roads requires more effort, and you could mistakenly slam the brakes too hard and lock the wheels.

Both the Anti-Lock Brake and Electronic Brakeforce Distribution systems work to avert wheel lock under hard braking, especially on wet pavement.

ABS modulates brake performance to prevent uncontrolled application of brake pressure to the wheels.

Meanwhile, the EBD system redistributes brake pressure between front and rear wheels. This ensures no wheel gets a disproportionate amount of brake pressure that it locks.

Traction Control System

To prevent the perennial traction challenge of winter, Ford outfitted the Fusion with a Traction Control System. The TCS continually receives input from sensors and uses it to predict loss of stability and take preventive measures.

If TCS detects unrestrained wheelspin, it automatically reduces engine speed. This does two things: a) slows down the vehicle to avert a crash b) reduces wheelspin and maximizes traction.

With the TCS active, you can drive confidently in winter, knowing your car won’t lose traction and crash.

Electronic Stability Control

Maintaining stability in wintry driving conditions is often a herculean task. In fact, the chances of your vehicle going out of control are more than double in winter.

The Fusion’s Electronic Stability Control feature mitigates against unstable driving in winter. It ensures your car remains stable even on low-traction roads and prevents crashes/collisions.

While you drive, the ESC receives and analyzes data from the ABS wheel speed sensors and steering wheel sensors. Combining both, the ESC can judge if your car is about to lose stability.

Once it senses a potential out-of-control scenario, ESC automatically applies the brakes and cuts engine power. Both actions force the vehicle to slow down, increasing traction and stability.

Intelligent All-Wheel-Drive

Although front-wheel-drive is standard on Fusions, All-Wheel-Drive is offered as an option. If you plan to drive in winter, we highly advise paying the extra amount for AWD.

Intelligent AWD can use input from various sensors to bolster handling and traction in less-than-ideal road conditions such as snow/ice. It works by analyzing vehicle data including the rate of acceleration, steering angle, wheel speed, and accelerator pedal position.

Continuous monitoring of vehicle behavior while driving means intelligent AWD can quickly detect loss of traction. In such situations, I-AWD will send power to the rear wheels to prevent the vehicle from losing control.

Brake Assist

An issue that confronts drivers when navigating roads in winter is longer braking distances. The problem is longer braking distances increases the likelihood of accidents.

The Brake Assist feature on Ford Fusions helps maximize brake power and cuts down stopping times. This means you can stop quickly to forestall a crash or collision on ice or snow.

Please also read our article on how long Ford Fusions last.

Does a Fusion Have Snow Mode?

You may have heard some automakers advertising a ‘Snow Mode’ feature on their vehicles. In its basic form, the Snow Mode system helps to improve driving and handling in snow.

The Fusion doesn’t come with a Snow Mode feature like some other Ford models.

Does this take anything away from the Fusion? Not really. At least, you still get an intelligent AWD system that enhances performance in snow, too.

Can You Install Additional Snow Gear on Fusion?

You can install extra snow gear on your Fusion if you need them. Here are some useful snow gear you can install on your Fusion to improve its performance in snow:

  • Snow chains
  • Snow socks
  • Snow tires

Say you want to buy snow chains, you should know what size of tires you use, and buy based on what fits that size. If the chains don’t fit properly, it will affect tire performance and ultimately, ride quality.

Except you’re good at doing so, you shouldn’t install the snow gear yourself.

For example, your Tire Pressure Management System could suffer damage while trying to replace stock tires with snow tires. Getting an experienced mechanic to install snow gear on your car saves you stress and money.

Some regions have laws on what vehicles can use specific snow gear. Ensure that you’re not breaking any laws by using snow gear on your Fusion.

How Much Snow Can a Fusion Handle?

The Fusion’s ground clearance of 6.4 inches means it can only handle light snow of about 2-4 inches.

Anything deeper than this and you may get stuck on the road. We advise getting an SUV or pickup if you live in an area that gets extreme snow.

If you are considering getting an SUV, make sure to read our article on Ford Edge in snow and winter driving.

How Do Fusion Handle Low Winter Temperatures?

The Fusion is fuel-injected, so it can operate in subzero temperatures without issues. However, some problems could stop your Fusion from running well in low winter temperatures. Here are some:

  • Dead battery/low battery power
  • Malfunctioning spark plugs
  • Dirty air/fuel filters
  • Clogged and/or contaminated fuel lines
  • Low oil viscosity

Can a Ford Fusion Drive on Ice?

The Ford Fusion can drive on icy roads. Its low ride height minimizes rollover risk and makes your car easier to control on icy surfaces. You also have traction control, ABS, ESC, and other great features that make driving on ice safer.

Make sure to also read our article on important Ford Fusion statistics.

Does the Fusion Have 4WD?

The Fusion comes standard with FWD, but has optional AWD. AWD is similar to 4WD, but there are several differences relating to design and function of both.

What About Older Fusion Models And Winter Driving?

Most of the older Fusions come with ABS, ESC, traction control, etc., so they are decent in snow. The Fusion was released in 2006 and offered traction control and ABS as optional equipment. All-wheel-drive came in 2008, while electronic stability control debuted in 2009.

Do Ford Fusion Need Snow Tires?

Snow tires are often better than all-season tires in winter. As such, we recommend buying snow tires if you want safer winter driving, especially if your area receives heavy snow during the winter.

Can You Mount A Snow Plow On A Ford Fusion?

You cannot mount a snow plow on a Ford Fusion-except you want to destroy its engine and transmission. 

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