They all perform well when they're new, and yes it is cheaply made. It's pretty sad when a Hyundai that costs less than half as much is built three times better. Get rid of it before it begins to completely fall apart, which with Ford cars is typically at about 70 or 80,000 miles, no matter how you take care of it.
I couldn't agree more with the last comment. I don't think the inside of the Fusion looks terribly cheap, but I was very impressed when I saw a new Sonata interior in person. It definitely doesn't look any cheaper than the Fusion. I actually like the look of the Sonata better. If you want to see horribly cheap plastic looking interiors, go look at some of the new Nissans. I was offended by the price tags for the interior quality you get.
The Fusion IS hard on gas! The window sticker says it all. The EPA rating for highway is 28mpg with the 4cyl automatic? The Hyundai Sonata 3.3L V6 has higher EPA rating than the Fusion 4cyl. What gives? That's pretty crappy, Ford.
I was disappointed with the interior quality as well. The interior looks as if it were made by Rubbermaid. The Chrysler Sebring sedan is even worse. The new Chevy Malibu interior is better than the other two, besides being more stylish and unique. Don't even get me started on the Camry interior. The Accord interior plastics looked rather cheap, especially considering the $24k pricetag for the 4cyl I looked at.
The Hyundai Sonata seems to have the best looking quality interior for the dollar, and it's getting decent reviews. The American car makers are sinking fast.
The reviewer had trouble to get more than 16 miles per gallon with a car that should get close to 30 miles per gallon. There is something wrong with that car. A defective car should not be used as a typical example of a model and compared with an other model.
The value comparisons regarding the interior are valid, albeit subjective.
The reviewer also doesn't state where/how they are driving. If you stay in town only, yeah you should expect sub 20 mpg because of the stop and go, it's a 3100 pound car. One time I got 12.5 mpg, took me a month to empty the tank though, so it's not a big deal. If you mash your foot into the gas pedal in town, don't complain about fuel economy. On the highway only, I usually get around 33 MPG.
Having driven several Fusions I am a big fan of them. They seem to be incredibly well built cars. As for all these remarks about interiors, I really have trouble discerning "cheap" plastic from "expensive" plastic. To me plastic is plastic. I rode in a friend's new Lexus and was a bit surprised to discover it has just as much plastic as my Ford. It DID have some plastic fake wood on the dash. Whether it was "cheap" plastic wood or "expensive" plastic wood I don't know, as Lexus had removed the price tags.
As for mileage, I think any Fusion getting less than 18 city has a mechanical issue. The least my 3.0 V-6 truck ever got was 18, and the Fusion certainly should best that.