What is it like on the inside?
In here it’s broadly the same design/layout as the Fiesta. That means the touchscreen (eight-inches in all but base Style spec, which you won’t buy anyway) is mounted high-up, well within reach of the driver’s fingers and comfortably in his or her eyeline.
The system itself, which Ford calls SYNC, is much better now than when we first saw it. For the most part it’s quick and easy to use, with a reasonable, class-competitive UI. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are here too, but their integration could have been better managed. We’d love a permanent shortcut for getting into/out of it, for example. Sticking with displays, the dials are of the analogue variety, but the screen that separates them gives good functionality. The optional HUD is especially clear, but the money it costs is probably better spent elsewhere.
Thankfully Ford resisted the urge to integrate the climate controls into the infotainment, so these live under the vents and a small row of audio controls deemed important enough to have a physical control. For a few hundred quid, these operate a B&O Premium stereo. A further six buttons live down by the gear lever and electronic handbrake - these control vehicle functions like the start/stop, drive modes and the parking sensors. It’s a sensible layout that works pretty well. Except for the starter button, which is an awkward grope behind the steering wheel.
Quality is mixed bag, though. Some trim pieces feel a bit cheaper than they ought to - the now aging VW Golf still leads the way here.
Of course where the Estate differs from the hatch is the boot. It’s big - 1,653-litres with all the seats folded, which can be done remotely. The loadbay is longer and taller than the old car’s, and there’s space under the floor for storing the parcel shelf. In the back there’s good head- and leg-room, and the seats themselves are comfy enough. The fronts, though, could do with a tilt function as the bases are quite short.