Ford in a letter sent to suppliers has stated that the redesign of the Fusion for North America and the related Mondeo for Europe has been canceled, The Detroit News reports.
The canceled program, referred to in the letter as CD542N, called for the redesigned Fusion’s arrival in 2020. The car is still on track for China, however.
The news could simply mean that Ford is delaying its plans for a redesigned Fusion in North America and Europe in the face of falling demand for sedans. The automaker did this with the Taurus which has been redesigned for China but not here. Instead, we’re still getting the previous generation.
However, in December 2017 there were reports claiming production of the redesigned Fusion would be handled exclusively in China. Ford wasn’t willing to confirm the reports but said at the time there were no plans to export Chinese-built Fusions to North America. This led to speculation that sales of the Fusion could end here after the current model’s run.
When asked about the fate of the Fusion, Ford spokesperson Mike Levine told The Detroit News the “Fusion remains an important part of the Ford lineup for years to come with even more new fresh features on the way.”
The Fusion sells in decent numbers, averaging about 17,500 sales per month in 2017. However, this is down about 22 percent on 2016’s result which itself is down 11 percent on the previous year.
Ford in a strategy outlined in October 2017 said there will be fewer nameplates in the future, though the automaker didn’t say which current nameplates would be axed. The move is a reaction to the consumer shift to SUVs, pickup trucks and electric cars, which the automaker sees as permanent. As a result, we may see the Fusion and Taurus potentially merged into a single product line, at least in the U.S.