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First drive: Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.

First drive: Ford Mondeo Estate
Ford's 1.5-litre petrol engine gets slotted into its brand new Mondeo Estate - but is it too small?

 



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Ford Mondeo Estate

4.5 4.5 4.5 4.5 4.5

The Ford Mondeo with conventional motive power comes in two body styles, with the Estate being our preferred aesthetic option. It looks suitably classy and is massive inside, although you'd be better off choosing a diesel engine to go under the bonnet rather than the new 1.5-litre petrol option, which feels a bit out of its depth.

Test Car Specifications

Model tested: Ford Mondeo 1.5 EcoBoost Titanium Estate
Pricing: Titanium 1.5 Estate starts from 23,495
Engine: 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol
Transmission: front-wheel drive, six-speed manual
Body style: five-door estate
CO2 emissions: 137g/km (VED Band E, 130 per year)
Combined economy: 47.9mpg
Top speed: 135mph
0-62mph: 9.3 seconds
Power: 160hp at 6,000rpm
Torque: 240Nm at 1,500- to 4,500rpm

What's this?

You're looking at the estate version of the all-new Mondeo, which we've already driven in hatchback format with a diesel engine. The estate has the same power unit line-up as the hatch, with wagons costing an extra 1,250 over their equivalent five-door siblings. The cars on the launch in Spain had the 1.5-litre EcoBoost petrol engine, a relatively new powerplant in the Ford family that replaces the old 1.6-litre lump yet offers similar power and torque for fewer nasties from the tailpipe.

And like so many saloons or hatches that get made into wagons, the estate ends up trumping its sister models to be crowned the visual champion. It looks marvellous in a strong colour, like the 'Deep Impact Blue' Titanium-spec models in the images, and has a neatly-styled rear that means it's not too boxy but at the same time doesn't skimp on load space. We'd go for the wagon every time on kerb appeal alone.

The inside is as good as the hatch, with the same concern about the quality of that plastic used on the centre console the only bugbear. The new Ford satnav system and SYNC 2 is vastly improved on preceding software and up there with the best-in-class, while we really like the elegant mix of analogue and TFT dials in the cluster. Rear-seat passengers will have extra headroom in the estate and the aforementioned boot is so big it has its own postcode; although, having said that, the new Volkswagen Passat Estate is claimed to have even more capacity, which must be annoying for Ford.

How does it drive?

Easily as sweetly as the hatchback, with the estate's rear suspension - set up to deal with heavy cargo at the back - not altering how brilliantly the Mondeo rides, nor really changing the way it tackles a series of corners. And the steering is the same as well: quick, hefty but not brimming with information. However, overall the Mondeo Estate proves to be an entertaining machine through quicker corners and just as luxuriantly hushed on motorways as the hatch.

Which is more than can be said for the 1.5-litre engine, which is not as quiet as the 2.0 TDCi diesel. It's certainly not an intrusive engine note and nor does the EcoBoost introduce unwanted vibrations into the cabin, but it gets a bit hard on the ears if you venture past the final point of peak torque at 4,500rpm. Wringing it out to the redline brings no appreciable uplift in acceleration despite apparently being the domain of maximum horsepower, so you're better off working the engine in the midrange, where it is a lot happier. The 1.5 is by no means utterly lost in the estate's 1,504kg body, especially on motorways where it is perfectly acceptable, but if you want punchier performance you'll need to pick the larger TDCi motors. This makes the prospect of the 1.0-litre, 125hp three-cylinder Mondeo less appealing an idea now than it was before we drove the 1.5.

Verdict

While the new Volkswagen Passat looms large on the Mondeo's horizon, we know that the German car won't set your pants on fire in terms of driver engagement. Which means the fact the Ford has sacrificed a few final tenths of chassis sparkle isn't that much of an issue. Therefore, with its magnificent ride, wonderful looks and capacious interior, the Mondeo estate is probably up there as a potential class leader... as long as you specify it with one of the 2.0 TDCi powerplants, as the 1.5 is better suited to smaller Fords than this.

5 5 5 5 5 Exterior Design

4 4 4 4 4 Interior Ambience

5 5 5 5 5 Passenger Space

5 5 5 5 5 Luggage Space

5 5 5 5 5 Safety

5 5 5 5 5 Comfort

4 4 4 4 4 Driving Dynamics

3.5 3.5 3.5 3.5 3.5 Powertrain


Matt Robinson - 14 Oct 2014









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2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.

2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.



2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.
 

2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.
 

2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.
 

2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.
 

2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.
 

2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.
 

2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.
 

2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.
 

2015 Ford Mondeo Estate. Image by Ford.
 






 

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