Most of the headlines concerning Ford this week have focused on the transition taking place in the CEO’s office, but meanwhile the end of a different era in Dearborn has passed more quietly. Production of the Ford Fusion has ended in Mexico, marking one of the final steps in Ford’s exit from the U.S. car business.
Ford, of course, announced more than two years ago that it was phasing out its remaining sedans and hatchbacks in favor of more in-demand crossovers, SUVs and trucks. It has already stopped making the Fiesta, Focus and Taurus for the domestic market. Now, Ford Authority reports that the last Fusion was sent down the line in Hermosillo, Mexico, on July 31, with production of its Lincoln MKZ platform-mate also finished. (Technically, Lincoln is still building the Continental sedan through the end of the year at Ford’s Flat Rock Assembly Plant in Michigan.)
Production of the models was originally slated to end July 21 but was extended to the end of the month, the website reported. Ford stopped taking orders for the Fusion Feb. 28. Replacing the Fusion and MKZ at the Hermosillo Assembly Plant will be the new Bronco Sport, with production set to begin in September.
Ford first introduced the Fusion as a 2006 model and was heavily revised for 2010. The current, second generation debuted for the 2013 model year in standard, hybrid and the Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid. Through the first half of the year, Ford sold 61,421 Fusions, down 36.3%. Its best full year for sales was 2014, when it moved 306,860 units.
Ford is reportedly planning a lifted crossover-wagon replacement for the Fusion, possibly called the Fusion Active.