Ancira Nissan Compares 2018 Nissan Altima VS 2018 Ford Fusion Near New Braunfels, TX

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2018 Nissan Altima

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VS

2018 Ford Fusion

Safety Comparison

The Altima has standard Active Head Restraints, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Active Head Restraints system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Fusion doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

Both the Altima and the Fusion have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front-wheel drive, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras, available daytime running lights, blind spot warning systems, rear parking sensors and rear cross-path warning.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Nissan Altima is safer than the Ford Fusion:

 

Altima

Fusion

OVERALL STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

 

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Neck Injury Risk

19%

28%

Leg Forces (l/r)

32/46 lbs.

167/333 lbs.

 

Passenger

STARS

4 Stars

3 Stars

HIC

172

254

Neck Injury Risk

35%

52%

Neck Stress

113 lbs.

197 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Nissan Altima is safer than the Ford Fusion:

 

Altima

Fusion

 

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Spine Acceleration

58 G’s

61 G’s

Hip Force

677 lbs.

790 lbs.

 

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

197

268

Spine Acceleration

42 G’s

46 G’s

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Altima its highest rating: “Top Pick Plus” for 2017, a rating granted to only 60 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Fusion is only a standard “Top Pick” for 2017.

Reliability Comparison

To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the Altima has a standard 550-amp battery. The Fusion’s 500-amp battery isn’t as powerful.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Altima third among midsize cars in their 2017 Initial Quality Study. The Fusion isn’t in the top three.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2016 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Nissan vehicles are more reliable than Ford vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Nissan 27th in reliability. With 31 more problems per 100 vehicles, Ford is ranked 31st.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ April 2017 Auto Issue reports that Nissan vehicles are more reliable than Ford vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Nissan 5 places higher in reliability than Ford.

Engine Comparison

As tested in Consumer Reports the Altima 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl. is faster than the Ford Fusion turbo 4 cyl.:

 

Altima

Fusion

Zero to 60 MPH

8.2 sec

9.2 sec

45 to 65 MPH Passing

5.6 sec

6.1 sec

Quarter Mile

16.4 sec

17 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

88.5 MPH

84.5 MPH

As tested in Consumer Reports the Altima 3.5 DOHC V6 is faster than the Ford Fusion 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.:

 

Altima

Fusion

Zero to 30 MPH

2.9 sec

3 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

6.3 sec

7.4 sec

45 to 65 MPH Passing

4.2 sec

4.5 sec

Quarter Mile

14.7 sec

15.8 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

101.5 MPH

92 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

On the EPA test cycle the Altima 2.5 gets better fuel mileage than the Fusion FWD with its standard engine (27 city/38 hwy vs. 21 city/32 hwy).

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Nissan Altima uses regular unleaded gasoline. The Fusion with the 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. engine requires premium for maximum efficiency, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The Altima has 1.5 gallons more fuel capacity than the Fusion FWD’s standard fuel tank (18 vs. 16.5 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

The Altima stops shorter than the Fusion:

 

Altima

Fusion

 

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

141 feet

145 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels Comparison

The Altima has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The Fusion doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Altima 3.5 SL handles at .87 G’s, while the Fusion SE pulls only .83 G’s of cornering force in a Road and Track skidpad test.

Chassis Comparison

The Nissan Altima may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 250 to 350 pounds less than the Ford Fusion.

Passenger Space Comparison

The Altima has .8 inches more front headroom and .7 inches more front legroom than the Fusion.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

With its sedan body style, valet key, locking rear seatbacks and remote trunk release lockout, the Altima offers cargo security. The Fusion’s non-lockable folding seat and non-lockable remote release defeat cargo security.

Ergonomics Comparison

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts detailed tests on headlights for their range both straight ahead and in curves and to be certain they don’t exceed acceptable amounts of glare to oncoming drivers. The Altima’s available headlights were rated “Acceptable” by the IIHS, while the Fusion’s headlights are rated “Poor.”

Economic Advantages Comparison

Insurance will cost less for the Altima owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the Altima with a number “1” insurance rate while the Fusion is rated higher at a number “5” rate.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Altima is less expensive to operate than the Fusion because typical repairs cost much less on the Altima than the Fusion, including $15 less for front brake pads and $323 less for a power steering pump.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Nissan Altima will be $395 to $1735 less than for the Ford Fusion.

Recommendations Comparison

Consumer Reports® recommends both the Nissan Altima and the Ford Fusion, based on reliability, safety and performance.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Altima first among midsize cars in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The Fusion isn’t in the top three.

The Nissan Altima outsold the Ford Fusion by 23% during the 2017 model year.

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