The Ford Fusion was slated for a full redesign in 2020, some seven years after its second generation debuted. However, The Detroit News obtained a letter Ford sent to suppliers that casts doubt on the model’s future.
“Ford officials said the company is canceling the previously planned North American redesign program — named CD542N — for the 2020 Fusion,” reports The Detroit News.
A few reasons could motivate Ford to cancel a planned redesign. One is Ford executives may not be happy with the current design of its future Fusion. But it could also point to Ford’s reluctance to invest money in a segment that’s increasingly losing favour with North American buyers.
The midsize sedan segment as a whole is rapidly and consistently losing ground to crossovers and SUVs. The top-selling midsize sedan in Canada—the Toyota Camry—was the 32nd best-selling vehicle overall as of November 2016, beaten by its Highlander, Sienna, Corolla, and RAV4 models.
The Ford Fusion, Canada’s third-most popular midsize sedan, is ranked 52nd overall.
Further adding credence to Ford’s possible Fusion cull are its plans to switch up global production. The Blue Oval will move next-generation Focus production away from North America to China. From there, Ford will import the compact car to North America.
Meanwhile, Ford’s Fusion redesign cancelation letter to suppliers applies only to Ford’s Mexico and Spain assembly plants, says The Detroit News, and not its Fusion assembly facility in China.
Unlike the Focus, Ford has publicly stated it does not plan to import the (bigger) Fusion from China.