I thought I'd try my hand at a little car blogging today. If it's good enough for Kaus and the Instapundit.... .
A week ago Friday I had the chance to test drive a 2006 Ford Fusion. My car was at the dealership for some routine maintenance, and while I was killing time in the lot a salesman even more bored than I was tried selling me on a small SUV.
I told him his time would be better spent with someone who actually was interested in buying a car, but apparently those people were in short supply that day as well. He was good enough at what he does to find out from me what kind of car I'd be looking at if I actually was buying one, and I found myself agreeing to a test drive.
The Fusion is the replacement for Ford's Taurus. The car I drove was the SEL model with a 3.0L V6 rated at 221 horsepower - about 50 more than my current seven year old Contour and almost as much as the 5.0L '89 Mustang I used to own. The car accelerates decently (at least compared to my '98)and got down the freeway on-ramps with power to spare. The 6-speed automatic took some getting used to - it just seemed busy when accelerating from a stop. The car rides well if a bit firmly, and it went where I pointed it without any fuss. Cornering at speed - I can't say, since I wanted to be careful with a car that wasn't mine (I mean, they know who I am there). The milage looks like it would be a bit less (21/29 vs. 22/30 for the old car) and the thing had more gadgets than I knew what to do with. I guess when you keep cars a long time the natural march of technology just makes the standard load of gadgets more impressive.
Inside, the car was done in leather (I'm one of those people who prefer cloth, what can I say?) and the color scheme was basic black, with not much chrome or anything else to distract. Compared to my Contour, it's very quiet, and the 6 disc CD changer was rather nice. All in all, if I was actually in the market, I might consider one.
Alas, one thing hasn't changed: new car smell + me = asthma attack. Annoying on a daily basis, which probably provides a neat excuse for buying used cars all the time (besides my natural cheapness, of course...).