The latest Ford Mondeo (the fourth generation if you like to know these sort of facts) has been on sale since December 2014. Without a doubt it has already met with huge success, having won a number of accolades including the ‘Best Family Car’ UK Car of the Year award.
John Challen, head of the UK Car of the Year Awards which started last year, declared: “One of the most eagerly-awaited cars of the year does not disappoint. Great levels of equipment and technology, a sensible cockpit layout, and – as is the case with almost every Ford – a joy to drive.”
So, what makes this latest large family hatchback (or indeed estate, or saloon if you order a hybrid) stand out from the crowd? Let’s take a look at some of the features and consider whether not only is it the right car for you but indeed if it is deserving of such high praise.
The new Ford Mondeo is an extremely sleek looking car. It offers some swooping bonnet lines and a simply stunning grille that is more Aston Martin than it is old style Mondeo. The crease stretching from the front lights all the way down the body pillars draws the eye and gives the car a sporting, crouched appearance.
The interior is equally impressive, with quality far better than the previous car. The dash has plenty of high quality plastics which are also soft touch – giving the impression that the car should last for a good many years to come. The digital displays are clear to read and the ancillary controls are located well within easy reach of the driver.
To sum this section up, the new Ford Mondeo is not only a very pleasant thing to look at from the outside but it is also a very nice place indeed to be. There are swathes of room for passengers, whilst the driver feels suitably cocooned within the ‘cockpit’ of the car. It is definitely a winner in this regard.
It has been widely reported that there are 14 powertrain combinations for the new Ford Mondeo, including:
- 125PS 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol manual
- 160PS 1.5-litre EcoBoost petrol manual and automatic
- 240PS 2.0-litre EcoBoost petrol automatic
- 120PS 1.5-litre TDCi diesel manual
- 150PS and 180PS 2.0-litre TDCi diesel manual and automatic
- 150PS and 180PS 2.0-litre TDCi diesel Intelligent All-Wheel Drive
- 210PS 2.0-litre TDCi diesel automatic
- 87PS petrol-electric hybrid
As you can see, there’s a power plant for just about every type of driving. The 125 1.0 litre EcoBoost is particularly effective, having been tuned to deliver over 55 miles per gallon and only 119g/km of CO2. Having had the opportunity to drive a car with this engine (albeit a Focus) I can confirm you won’t be disappointed, despite the size of the powerplant. Engines across the board are efficient, quiet and will live up to Ford’s now ingrained reputation for reliability and longevity.
Four wheel drive
If you need more road holding than front wheel drive can offer, the new Mondeo can be fitted with Intelligent All-Wheel Drive when the 150PS 2.0-litre TDCi diesel engine or 180PS 2.0-litre TDCi diesel engine are optioned.
The system continually measures how the car’s wheels are gripping the road surface every 16 milliseconds, and can adjust power delivery to individual wheels in 100 milliseconds. This is sure to add a sense of safety and security for those needing to travel in wintry weather or on neglected UK ‘B’ roads.
The Hybrid Option
The first hybrid electric vehicle ever manufactured by Ford in Europe, the Mondeo Hybrid is available in a saloon body style. It uses two electric motors and 1.4kWh lithium-ion battery combined with a 2.0-litre Atkinson cycle petrol engine to drive at up to 85mph in electric mode. The drivetrain delivers 187PS with 67.3mpg and 99g/km CO2* and is priced the same as the equivalent 2.0-litre TDCi model at £24,995.
This makes ‘green’ driving within reach of those who would otherwise seek to buy oil burners. It’s a great option for those who may drive fewer miles and opens up the hybrid market for those who would normally consider this type of car simply too costly to purchase.
There are a whole host of new and improved advanced technologies available for the new Ford Mondeo, including:
- Heated steering wheel
- Heated rear seats
- Full dynamic LED headlamps
- Adaptive Front Lighting System – which adjusts beam and angle according to conditions
- Pre-collision Assist with Pedestrian Detection Technology
- Active Park Assist with Perpendicular Parking
- Inflatable rear seatbelts for optimum passenger safety
- Ford’s SYNC 2 connectivity system with eight inch colour touch screen
- Ford MyKey – designed to keep younger drivers safe by preventing incoming phone calls etc
- Active City Stop – with automatic braking to prevent low speed city collisions
With the Mondeo being a large car (at 4871 mm long it’s not exactly a supermini) I’ve no doubt that a significant proportion of cars will be specified with the Active Parking Assist. If you have yet to see the system in operation, you’ll be in awe of it when you do. The computer scans for spaces then the driver only needs to operate the brake as the car steers into the space. It really is a fantastic piece of technology.
Five Star Euro NCAP Safety
Given that the new Mondeo is a stand out family car, safety was of course on the top of the priority list for Ford. This is emphasized by the coveted highest five star Euro NCAP safety rating being awarded in tests.
“This is the most technologically advanced Ford ever introduced in Europe. Through features like Pre-Collision Assist with Pedestrian Detection, and Inflatable Rear Seatbelt, we’ve delivered safety features that provide exceptional protection for drivers, passengers and pedestrians alike,” said Ulrich Koesters, vehicle line director, Ford of Europe.
It’s worth remembering that as each year passes, the Euro NCAP tests become more and more stringent and so vehicles have to become safer as a result in order to meet the higher standards of the test. What that means in reality is that a five star car even just five or six years ago is not as safe as the latest cars such as the Ford Mondeo.
The all-new Mondeo body structure features 61 per cent high strength steel, and uses an industry-first application of hydro-formed high strength steel for the forward window pillars and the roof rails – reducing side impact intrusion by up to 64mm.
Further structural developments include an anti-roll bar uniquely designed to limit transmission travel in a frontal impact – minimising steering rack movement, and sill rocker panels made of martensitic boron steel for improved side impact protection.
Autocar, the UK’s weekly motoring magazine, reported the new Mondeo’s superiority over a direct rival – BMW 3-Series. Featuring a five-car Autocar group test versus key rivals, the magazine added a final comparison between the Ford Mondeo Titanium 2.0-litre TDCi 180PS PowerShift and a BMW 320d.
“(The Mondeo) rides better, handles better, grips harder, communicates better, is more refined and is quicker among urban speeds,” said Autocar.
Whilst we haven’t had the opportunity to conduct a side by side comparison, we at Car Articles can confirm that the new Ford Mondeo is a firm favourite. Whilst the ‘Mondeo Man’ may have been something from an election campaign of years ago, maybe it’s about time he made a return. After all, how can you argue with something that offers quality, driveability and advanced technology at such a reasonable price in the face of such stiff (German) competition?
Few cars offer so much at a base price – especially with as many options for technology and engines. If you’re in the market for a larger family car (or even spec it highly and consider it an executive) then we’d recommend that you look no further. Your money will go very far with this new Ford and whether doing the school run or travelling cross country you’ll travel in safety and arrive in comfort, all with a smile on your face. Take a look – your wallet will thank you for it.
The all-new Mondeo is priced from £19,995 and available in five-door, estate and four-door (hybrid only) bodystyles.
More information on the New Mondeo range available from Jennings Motor Group