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Ford Evos Could Preview the Fusion Replacement for the U.S.

Ford Evos Could Preview the Fusion Replacement for the U.S.
  • ford unveiled a mid-size car called the evos at the shanghai auto show today.
  • although details are scarce, from the photos the evos has an appearance with elements of a wagon, a sedan, and a crossover.
  • this china-only model could signify what ford's long rumored subaru outback–inspired wagon for the u.s., the fusion active, might look like.

    ford's new mid-size car for china is the evos, a name it used 10 years ago on a concept car that now signifies a possible replacement for our market's fusion sedan, perhaps in the form of the fusion active wagon that has been expected for a few years now.

    ford won't say much about the evos other than that it's "aligned with chinese aesthetics" and was specifically developed for that market. from the three photos ford made available, one of which depicts it on the stand at the shanghai auto show, the open-mesh grille and the rev counter on the instrument panel indicate the evos is not a battery-electric car like the mustang mach-e. but the body proportions, from the car's shoulder height and fastback profile to the interior's door panels and center console, are reminiscent of that car.

    as to whether you'd call it a sedan or a crossover, that's difficult to say for certain, but it's a good-looking vehicle. it's not surprising that there's quite a lot of resemblance to the concept evos, which in 2011 previewed many styling elements of the 2013 fusion. on the production evos, the muscled stance and super-thin headlights from the concept look very natural on this higher-riding vehicle.

    the evos will feature ford's newly announced level 2 self-driving feature called bluecruise. ford says it will activate on "prequalified sections of divided highways," which is exactly how cadillac's super cruise is designed to function (by using laser-scanned 3d maps). ford didn't say how many miles of road in china are set up for hands-free driving. the same technology will be available in the u.s. on the mach-e and the f-150 pickup later this year.

    the evos also gets a new ford virtual personal assistant, which uses a human-machine interface to customize interior conditions. in contrast to the mach-e's 15.5-inch vertical display and teensy instrument panel, the evos spans 43 inches of screens in one horizontal sweep. the vpa has a "co-driver" mode in which one side of the screen can be set up to show navigation, traffic signs, and road conditions while the passenger can look at entertainment on the other side. it also has a "relax" mode in which lighting, seat positions, and audio can be adjusted to taste. the software is modified by the chinese tech giant baidu and therefore unlikely to show up in other markets.

    ford also hasn't given any details about the powertrain, chassis, or anything as it relates to a potential u.s. or european version.

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