What is it?
Mondeo man has it right. This is a good car with nice styling, a cracking chassis and plenty of kit. Which is a good job: we were expecting a replacement soon, and we’ve indeed already seen the new-shape Mondeo that’s on sale in the US. Trouble is, Ford’s closing the factory in Belgium that makes it, and moving it to Spain. The launch of the new Mondeo is thus delayed.
Luckily, although it’s ageing fast, the Mondeo remains a good car. And Ford is enhancing it now with added value to further boost the low-CO2 appeal of its newer diesel engines. Will this be enough to see it battle on for the next year or so? Ford’s fingers are firmly crossed…
Perhaps the Mondeo’s greatest attribute is its chassis, for, despite being a really large car when compared to an A4 or 3-Series, it feels remarkably agile under a full head of steam. There’s plenty of grip here while the steering is responsive and full of feel. The ride excels too. Stable and quiet at those all-important motorway speeds, it’s also supple and cosseting enough to tackle bumpy A and B-roads without tiring driver or passengers.
The range is built around the 2.0-litre TDCi, striking a good balance of pace and economy, although if petrol is your thing, Ford’s EcoBoost technology does much the same. The 1.6-litre TDCi works better than you’d expect car too — it’s smoother and quieter than the 2.0-litre.
On the inside
The Mondeo has this peculiar ability to make even quite large blokes feel diminutive. Not just because the cabin itself is large, but also because, looking out from the driver’s seat, it’s hard to believe just how far away the ends of the car are. Not the most obvious choice for anyone struggling with their parallel park then, but all that length does make for a very spacious and practical cabin. The back seat is getting on for executive levels of legroom and the boot is vast.
It’s all very modern, clean and functional, with just enough detailing to make it feel a bit special without going over the top.
The Mondeo isn’t desperately cheap to buy (although it’s better value than before) and the relatively average residuals are likely to worsen as the launch date of the new one approaches. At least it’s more efficient than before: the 2.0-litre TDCi could still do better but the 1.6 TDCi is very impressive, averaging up to 65.7mpg. Company car drivers will still be annoyed it doesn’t dip into the sub-110g/km CO2 category though. But all that space is worth a lot day-today, and the comfortable, practical Mondeo could be all the car a growing family ever needs.