Premium makeover for Ford's large SUV fails to turn the Edge into a premium car

What is it?

This is the Ford that is priced well into the £40,000s even before you tick any of the option boxes: the Ford Edge Vignale. That sticks it right at the very top of the Ford range in price and prestige terms, with the likes of the S-Max Vignale, Ford Mustang V8, Focus RS and any Ford Galaxy Titanium X all well behind it.  

In theory, the Edge Vignale should hold plenty of appeal in Europe. The market can’t get enough of SUVs and many car makers report that SUV buyers, more than most, are willing to pay for top-spec models. Indeed, SUV buyers have proven themselves to be fairly neutral to badges as well – so long as the car is good enough.

The Edge Vignale, as with all other Ford Vignales, has been dipped in Ford’s chrome trim and big alloy machine on the outside, moved to the leather factory for the inside, before heading off to the technology department to heat, power, light and add vision to anything that can automate or turned into a switch or camera. All with a view of making it ‘premium’, which also extends to the buying and ownership experience.

Ford You can have the 2.0-litre diesel engine in the Edge Vignale with either 178bhp or 207bhp, the latter of which we’re testing here. All-wheel drive is standard in both versions and they have a six-speed dual-clutch Powershift automatic gearbox.

Ford edge vignale rear

What's it like?

The Edge Vignale does what all other Edges do: it offers a comfortable, spacious cabin and a relaxed drive, and provides an adequate performance, but now with a few more toys thrown in. Remember, though, creditable as the Edge is on those fronts, it is not a class-leading car before its premium transformation.

So, at this price, the Edge’s have-nots now show up even more against its haves, particularly inside, where a premium car really sells itself. The big leather seats are comfortable and the undoubted high point, but all that plush leather is dotted around a load of switchgear and a fairly crude infotainment screen you’d find in Ford Mondeos costing half as much, diluting that premium feel.

Space is of course a premium feature, and the Edge Vignale does deliver on this front. The boot is a vast, usable space, with a wide opening, and the 60/40 split rear seats fold flat to create your very own posh van. But, then again, so do other Edges - just without the plusher carpet to line the boot floor.

The performance of the engine is decent, its delivery making for comfortable, relaxed progress rather than anything brisk. That makes it a nice companion for the automatic gearbox, which offers smooth and unobtrusive shifts. Ford Although, again, the same can be said for lesser Edges.

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The ride is not vintage Ford. Fords tend to ride in an intuitive way, with fine chassis engineering belying the often humble underpinnings, yet the optional 20in alloys (in chrome, of course) contribute to a brittleness over potholes and scars in the road - a problem that worsens the lower the speed. 

Ford edge vignale dashboard

Should I buy one?

The Edge Vignale must always be remembered in the context of its price. For Ford is playing at this level with the likes of well-specced Land Rover Discovery Sports, Audi Q5s, BMW X3s and Volvo XC60s - all cars that start their lives as premium models and scale up from there, rather than being something more humble and affordable to begin with before the leather is added.

Having now tried it in the UK, our advice on the Edge Vignale is the same as it was when we first sampled it in Austria a few months ago: if you’re really sold on an Edge, pick yourself one lower down the range and tick some option boxes to get much of the same package for a lot less money. But if you’re looking to spend more than £40,000 on an SUV, you need to look elsewhere.

Ford Edge Vignale 2.0 TDCi AWD Powershift

Where Bristol; On sale Now; Price ££41,795; Engine 4cyls, 1997cc, diesel; Power 207bhp at 3750rpm; Torque 332lb ft at 2000rpm; Gearbox 6-spd twin-clutch automatic; Kerbweight 1949kg; Top speed 131mph; 0-62mph 9.4sec; Fuel economy 48.7mpg; CO2 rating/tax band 149g/km/31%; Rivals Land Rover Discovery Sport TD4 HSE Auto, Audi Q5 2.0 TDI Quattro S line

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Ford edge vignale badging

Mark Tisshaw

Title: Editor

Mark is a journalist with more than a decade of top-level experience in the automotive industry. He first joined Autocar in 2009, having previously worked in local newspapers. He has held several roles at Autocar, including news editor, deputy editor, digital editor and his current position of editor, one he has held since 2017.

From this position he oversees all of Autocar’s content across the print magazine, autocar.co.uk website, social media, video, and podcast channels, as well as our recent launch, Autocar Business. Mark regularly interviews the very top global executives in the automotive industry, telling their stories and holding them to account, meeting them at shows and events around the world.

Mark is a Car of the Year juror, a prestigious annual award that Autocar is one of the main sponsors of. He has made media appearances on the likes of the BBC, and contributed to titles including What Car?Move Electric and Pistonheads, and has written a column for The Sun.

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80sXS 4 September 2017

Looks good but they usually do

I've often looked at Fords and thought 'I wouldn't mind a Ford', but I've never thought 'I really want a Ford' once sat in one.

smokescreen38 1 September 2017

Ford Vignale

A quick look on Autotrader will find you a 2016 Monday Vignale with 14k miles on it, 4wd for £20k that was £30+k list. Gives you an idea that people have seen through all the glitz & bullshit. It looks nice but as mentioned in an earlier post I'll get one at a couple of years old & probably well over half the price.
gazza5 1 September 2017


I had one of these on recent trip to USA, had the 2.0 ecoboost engine from the mondeo (240ps?) - I liked it, its quite a nice car, and agree with the post about the tiguin, its fine sitting in the front, but the back its cheap cheap cheap.

If they did the 2.0 petrol - or the v6 - think its 2.7v6 - I would certainly consider it, but a diesel - not for me.