Clash: Fusion 1.4 TDCi vs Meriva 1.3 CDTI

author: date: 2016-07-21
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Ticket to the MPV world:
FORD FUSION 1.4 TDCI vs OPEL MERIVA 1.3 CDTI

It's not a secret that most of us desire an attractive, sporty and powerful car made by one of the world-leading brands. It should preferably also be loaded with the list of optional equipment longer than the list of required documents for the housing loan. But rare people do, however, go with the drawbacks this brings. I refer to tax / insurance costs, service / spare parts costs, tires costs, and generally COSTS! An average family requires a car that could take 4 to 5 people with some luggage from A to B, baring in mind low fuel consumption and maintenance costs. This is why I decided to write about some of the smallest MPVs out there, which should be able to fulfill all the expectations such family might have.

For a start there's the Ford Fusion, or better to say a stretched and extended Fiesta suitable for a bit taller drivers and a bit bumpier roads. Under bumpier roads I refer to an average street in Eastern Europe before the elections, and nothing more than that. 153 centimeters tall and 172 wide, this vehicle is not exactly a benchmark of road stability, although drivers do report a high level of comfort provided by this configuration, along with acceptable road grip under moderate conditions. Our other contender, Meriva, has 3 centimeters less in width and full 10 centimeters more in height, which compromises handling even further, but provides more leg space and a bigger boot. It's an overgrown Opel Corsa C with which it shares chassis and most of its engines.



Talking about engines, both cars offer a wide scope of options, but I decided for the two smallest diesel ones as the tribute to the whole economy background of this story. Ford is powered by the Peugeot's smallest HDi with disappointing 68 horse power and only 160 Nm of torque. We've seen this engine in Fiesta and Mazda 2 and we know it represents a safe choice for somebody not interested in performances at all. Luckily, Fusion weighs only 1.100 kilograms, and even this poor stud farm pulls it so that it hits 100km/h within bearable, if not discouraging, 15.5 seconds.



Meriva, 200 kilograms heavier, is not even close to that score. Fiat's little MultiJet offers 2hp and 20Nm more, but it still requires 18 unbearable seconds of agony to reach the 3-digits speed. Good news is that both models had some stronger diesel power-trains on offer, so you could get a Meriva with Isuzu-engineered 1.7 engine producing 100 horse power, while Fusion could brag with the famous Peugeot-made 1.6 HDi, offering 10hp less.

What motivates people to buy and drive these small-capacity-engine cars is, and has always been - low fuel consumption. Fusion's official average 4.4 liters per 100 kilometers is really promising, while Meriva asks for 0.6 liter more. On the other hand, when real-life data gathered by actual drivers across Europe is compared the difference shrinks to 0.2 liter only (5.2 Fusion, 5.4 Meriva). Those are still excellent results and they do, to some extent, justify the inferiority you feel while overtaking. Overtaking in sense that you're being overtaken, of course, not you overtaking others. Unless you approach a horse carriage. Anyways, engines and their fuel consumption are not crucial when deciding between the two cars, although I'd give a slight advantage to the MultiJet, but that's just my personal oppinion.



Something that every driver should also care about is certainly safety. On the paper the two vehicles are almost identical and, with their 4 EuroNCAP stars, they provide just enough for a family not to worry much about it, especially if dad is not a boy racer. Nevertheless, when the results are analysed more carefully, it turns out Fusion is a bit better when it comes to frontal impact aftermath. Considering the class they belong to, both cars are good enough and safety won't make the difference when choosing between them either.

To conclude, neither of the two vehicles is a Renaul Espace, and it doesn't pretend to be. They are two compact models at the verge of MPV segment who offer a lot for less and can be very interesting to people driving mostly in the city and in need of some extra space. At the same time they are quite frugal, their maintenance costs are low as are the other expanses related to them. It is only up to you to be disgusted by high speed driving and voilà - two great candidates are waiting for you to spend your 3.000 hard-earned euros on them.
Vehicle information - Ford Fusion
~70% score
produced:
2005. - 2012.
 
body style:
MPV
5 door
length:
4020
mm
width:
1721
mm
height:
1528
mm
boot:
337 - 1175
l
fuel tank:
45
l
Vehicle information - Opel Meriva
~70% score
produced:
2005. - 2010.
 
body style:
MPV
5 door
length:
4052
mm
width:
1694
mm
height:
1624
mm
boot:
415 - 1410
l
fuel tank:
52
l

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