What is it?
It’s the Mondeo, the longest passenger car Ford sells in the UK, with a 1.0 EcoBoost three-cylinder petrol engine, the smallest motor Ford sells in the UK.
Less than ideal companions, you might think, what with a kerb weight of 1476kg. There are, however, reasons to fit this 124bhp engine to this large family car – mostly centred around the fact that it returns 55.4mpg on the combined cycle and has a 119g/km CO2 figure. The next most efficient petrol engine in the range is the 158bhp, 1.5-litre four-cylinder unit, with 134g/km.
What's it like?
We’re fond of the Ecoboost engine in Ford’s other cars, but can it hack the Mondeo’s kerb weight? Just about. It helps that it revs extremely smoothly and quietly, with a muted three-pot thrum that’s very appealing. It drives the front wheels through a slick six-speed manual gearbox, so there’s pleasure to be had in working it. Turbo lag is minimal at higher revs. It's worse at low revs, but peak torque is developed from 1400rpm, so you don't have to wait long for it to come on song.
In that way, the 1.0-litre feels not unlike a small-capacity diesel, only better sounding and with a broader rev-band. On paper it can’t match the 78.5mpg of Ford’s most efficient 1.5-litre diesel, and on the road I suspect the gap will be bigger still, such is the way you’ll rev an engine that, even giving its all, can accelerate the Mondeo from 0-62mph in only 12 seconds.