Are you a car buyer who trusts what you read on the window sticker? New findings by Consumer Reports may make you think twice.
The magazine says its tests show the new Fusion Hybrid and C-Max hybrid don't live up to Ford's claims that they get 47 miles per gallon.
"We actually just completed our formal instrumented testing of them in fuel economy," says Jake Fisher at Consumer Reports. "We got 37 miles per gallon for the C-Max and 39 for the Ford Fusion Hybrid."
That is significantly lower than Ford's mileage claim and the biggest discrepancy Consumer Reports has ever found between a manufacturer's estimate and actual real-world performance.
Fisher predicts, "If someone were to buy these vehicles and see 47 miles per gallon and get 39 or 37, they'd probably be pretty disappointed."
Despite achieving 10 miles per gallon less than advertised, Consumer Reports finds both vehicles actually get excellent fuel economy, even at 37 mpg. It's the best mileage testers have ever seen in mid-size vehicles.
In a written statement to ABC News, Ford responds: "Early C-Max Hybrid and Fusion Hybrid customers praise the vehicles and report a range of fuel economy figures, including some reports above 47 mpg."
Ford insists that different driving styles will yield different results. The company says there are tools inside the hybrid vehicles to optimize fuel economy.
Despite Ford's assertion that 47 mpg is achievable, Consumer Reports says it doesn't believe that is the case in real-world, typical driving conditions.