Finally Ford puts seven seats in new, bigger C-Max variants in what could be the class leader

What is it?

The C-Max seven-seater, 140mm longer and 110kg heavier than the five-seater. This one comes with the 138bhp 2.0-litre Duratorq diesel engine, driving through the optional six-speed dual-clutch Powershift gearbox

What’s it like?

It’s the version targeted at the US market, and within a mile of driving you know it.

The car is distinctly softer in the suspension than the shorter model; engineers say it’s as much to give the occupants of the third row a comfortable ride as to meet American tastes.

In fact, the rest of the car is very European, with identical interior and seat designs to the short-wheelbase model and VW levels of material quality and finish.

It is deceptively spacious, with sliding rear doors and a clever set-up that allows the centre seat of the second row to fold beneath one of the others, leaving a ‘walk-through’ space. Ford calls the model a ‘six-plus-one’ layout, rather than a simple seven-seater.

The engine is impressively smooth and refined, with typical turbodiesel torque from low down. It works especially well with the Powershift gearbox.

On the road, there’s little beyond the slightly more relaxed ride to choose between the Grand C-Max and the smaller C-Max.

They feel identical in steering precision and cornering grip, and you’re barely aware of its extra size and weight.

Should I buy one?

Ford’s decision to put seven seats in a new, bigger C-Max variant is a good one as this could well be the class leader.

Despite its billing, this is a European Ford; it’ll be fascinating to see how Americans like it.

Ford Grand C-Max Zetec 2.0 TDCi 140 Powershift

Price: £21,995; Top speed: 123mph; 0-62mph: 10.5sec; Economy: 48.7mpg (combined); CO2: 154g/km; Kerb weight: 1634kg; Engine: 4 cyls, 1997cc, turbodiesel; Power: 138bhp at 3750rpm; Torque: 236lb ft at 1750-2750rpm; Gearbox: 6-spd dual-clutch auto

Looking for a used Ford C-Max for sale? Visit PistonHeads Classifieds

Steve Cropley

Steve Cropley Autocar
Title: Editor-in-chief

Steve Cropley is the oldest of Autocar’s editorial team, or the most experienced if you want to be polite about it. He joined over 30 years ago, and has driven many cars and interviewed many people in half a century in the business. 

Cropley, who regards himself as the magazine’s “long stop”, has seen many changes since Autocar was a print-only affair, but claims that in such a fast moving environment he has little appetite for looking back. 

He has been surprised and delighted by the generous reception afforded the My Week In Cars podcast he makes with long suffering colleague Matt Prior, and calls it the most enjoyable part of his working week.

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Rich boy spanners 3 October 2010

Re: Ford Grand C-Max 2.0 TDCi

Old Toad wrote:

Ha ha stick to a 2 seater sports car AND a pack of durex then you wont need a people carrier !

You won't need the Durex, if you have a 2 seat sports car everyone thinks you're having a mid life crisis and you won't pull in the first place... :-)

Old Toad 1 October 2010

Re: Ford Grand C-Max 2.0 TDCi

ischiaragazzo wrote:
Looks OK but like most of these if you load it up with seven passengers you end up with enough luggage space for a packet of Durex and a folding toothbrush

Ha ha stick to a 2 seater sports car AND a pack of durex then you wont need a people carrier !

Rich boy spanners 1 October 2010

Re: Ford Grand C-Max 2.0 TDCi

ischiaragazzo wrote:
That wasn't my point. A four or five seater car or hatch generally has a fair bit of luggage room. What I am saying is that if you filled this with passengers and you all went to do a weekly grocery shop then you wouldn;t fit it all in the boot

These MPV's are not designed for using the rear seats full time - they are 5 seaters with 2 additional seats for use from time to time. I doubt many people at all will ever use this car with the a rear seat raised and the normal centre slid sway, it's too much bother and sounds gimmicky, the rear seats will be left in place as normal and then you get a useable boot. I've used the rear 2 seats in my Verso twice in 3 years.