New Ford Mondeo: the lowdown
Hang on a second, haven't we seen the new Mondeo before? You'd be forgiven for thinking you had - Ford has relentlessly pumped out teaser photos, concept cars and even James Bond Mondeos, all trailing info on its important mid-sized family car. This is real, though: the new 2007 Ford Mondeo, finally uncovered. Ford today releases the first pix and details ahead of its world premiere at the Geneva Motor Show in March. Read on to see the full story.
Okay, so tell me the Mondeo highlights
This is an all-new model, designed to spice up the traditionally lacklustre Mondeo. The outgoing model was always great to drive, it just never set your pants on fire and looked rather dull. You could say it hid its light under a rather plain bushel. The new Mondeo gets the new EUCD mechanicals that we've already seen on the S-Max, so it should be a sharp steer, and there's a wide choice of new engines: • 108bhp 1.6-litre petrol with five-speed manual • 143bhp 2.0-litre petrol with five-speed manual • 159bhp 2.3-litre petrol with six-speed auto • 217bhp 2.5-litre petrol with six-speed manual • 99bhp or 123bhp 1.8-litre diesel with five- or six-speed manual • 128bhp 2.0-litre diesel with six-speed auto • 138bhp 2.0-litre diesel with six-speed manual Cleverly, Ford claims its new Easyfuel system will prevent owners from slotting the wrong pump into the fuel filler neck. The days of wrong-fuelling are over, it claims...
Will we get all the usual Mondeo bodystyles?
Oh yes. There's saloon, hatch and estate shapes right from the word go - all wrapped in Ford's new signature look, dubbed kinetic design. There's a new elegance, certainly, and a few stylistic echoes from the S-Max and other recent Ford designs. We reckon the new Mondeo really moves the game on; okay, it's not going to leapfrog into the compact executive class, but it looks and feels classier than its main rival, the Vauxhall Vectra.
Ok, so what's the new Mondeo like inside?
The quality of the interior is a world away from the brittle innards of the old Mondeo. Materials feel more expensive, there's more sophisticated ambient lighting and you can even specify piano black trim (if that's your thing). The kit list should be pretty impressive: ESP stability control, air-con, MP3 socket for iPods, follow-me-home lights and a trip computer are standard throughout the range. Step up from Edge basic trim, and you progress through Zetec, Ghia and Titanium X models, bringing niceties like adaptive cruise control and tyre-pressure monitoring.
Go on then, tell me: will the new Mondeo be a good drive?
The new platform brings an increase in track and a new control-blade rear suspension similar to the S-Max's; with four links controlling rear-wheel movement, it should corner tidily. Engineers promise we'll notice the improved NVH performance thanks to isolated subframes and quieter glazing, so it should be quiet and refined, too. We're driving the car in April, so come back to CAR Online to see if it delivers the goods. We'll let you know before anyone else.