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Ford Mondeo: Test Drive Review

Date: 16 September 2010   |   Author:

Category: Upper medium
P11D price: £28,245 (est)
Key rival: Vauxhall Insignia

The likes of BMW and Audi are increasingly encroaching into Ford's sales heartland, but the Blue Oval is fighting back.

The Mondeo is already lauded as one of the most prestige-aping cars Ford has produced, but now the brand claims to have made a series of improvements to counter the German competition.

Ford's executive design director Martin Smith said that the small alterations are designed to "improve the premium appeal and make it a car that can compete with the best Germany has to offer". There are 1365 upgrades in total, including the new front grille and bonnet, new LED daytime running lights, side indicators incorporated into the mirrors, chrome detailing to the side, new rear bumper, LED rear lights, centre display, new fonts for the dashboard and an array of technology including lane departure warning, blind spot monitoring, auto high beam and driver alert monitoring.

The revised looks aren't a decisive change from the previous car, while the extra chrome trim gives the Mondeo an almost American look. Only the LED tail lamps are a massive clue to the new model's identity.

Also on the list of new features is the 2.2-litre 200hp diesel engine. It joins the range a month after the facelifted car's arrival in October, and is another example of Ford trying to compete with the prestige Germans by offering a high-power diesel. Costing £2750 more than the 163hp 2.0-litre and available only in the top Titanium?Sport X trims the new unit is the most powerful diesel available in the sector from the volume players, and in manual form scrapes below the capital allowance writing-down boundary with CO2 emissions of 159g/km, which means a fuel economy figure of 47.0mpg.

Only available to sample on the launch event in estate form, the new engine is strong, especially in the higher gears, but doesn't feel quite as quick as a 200hp diesel could, which is largely down to the Mondeo's bulk - at 4784mm in length and 2092mm wide the estate is a hefty piece of kit.

Sensibly, Ford hasn't meddled with the driving experience, which can only really be beaten by BMW and maybe Mercedes in this class.

The Mondeo's big problem, now Ford has realigned prices to stop its cars being so expensive compared with its volume rivals, is the badge. It's a noble aim to try and take on the likes of BMW and Audi, but the company car park prestige is never going to match them. That is a shame because on merit the Mondeo has a right to be battling the best-in-class. Realistically, however, badge-conscious drivers won't abandon their 3-series or A4 for a Mondeo in serious numbers, no matter how good the car is. Instead, Ford will have to console itself with being up with the very best of the volume upper medium competitors.

Ford Mondeo 2.2 TDCi 200hp Titanium Estate
P11D price£28,245*
Model price range£17,295-£28,245
Fuel consumption47.0mpg
CO2 (tax) 159g/km (23%)
BIK 20/40% per month£108/£217
Service interval12,500 mls
Insurance (1-50)group 28*
Warranty3yrs/60,000 mls
Boot space (min/max)549/1740 litres
Engine size/power2179cc/200hp
Top speed/0-62mphmph/8.3secs
On sale October 2010
VerdictWell-managed minor refresh
increases Mondeo’s
already substantial appeal


Well-managed minor refresh increases Mondeo’s already substantial appeal