Several automakers have faced backlash after consumers discovered their cars don't quite hit the lofty fuel economy figures promised by the companies, and Ford may be the newest casualty of all this pesky fact-checking by critics and watchdogs.
The magazine drove the cars 2,000 miles and consistently got around 39 mpg for the Fusion and 37 mpg for the C-Max. Jake Fisher, director of auto testing for Consumer Reports, said this is the largest discrepancy between what automakers MPG claims and the actual real-world driving results.
"It's not to say these are bad cars at all; they still get excellent fuel economy," Fisher said. "But we've been doing this for a long time, and we've never seen such a difference between the EPA estimates and our numbers."
Ford said its figures were certified by the EPA, but the EPA only tests about 10 to 15 percent of the cars on the road. Ford said some early reports from customers showed the cars getting even better fuel economy than 47 mpg.
"This reinforces the fact that driving styles, driving conditions, and other factors can cause mileage to vary," said Wes Sherwood, a spokesman for Ford. For customers who want to optimize their fuel economy, the cars come with different driving coach software to help drivers get better fuel economy, he said.
Scroll down to watch the video report from Consumer Reports.