What is it?
One of two new additions to the Ford Mondeo range, the other being an enhanced Graphite specification for retail customers. This latest iteration of the business edition combines an impressive array of standard equipment with a very economical range of engines.
Driven here is the 2.0-litre TDCi Duratorque version, which comes in the middle of the range power wise with 138bhp. It beats the other diesel in the range, the 1.6-litre TDCi which has 113bhp, but is bested by the 1.6-litre EcoBoost petrol version with 158bhp.
This is a car built for company drivers, and rates well on the company car tax scales, costing £833 annually at 20 per cent Benefit in Kind, and £1666 at 40 per cent. By comparison, the older 2.0-litre TDCi Zetec business edition costs £783 at 20 per cent, and £1565 at 40 per cent.
What's it like?
The interior in this ‘most luxurious Mondeo yet’ is as well appointed as you’d expect, with Ford’s excellent touchscreen satellite navigation and infotainment system stealing the show. Other features like part-digital dashboard display, power start button and Windsor leather seats help to give the Ford a well-appointed feel.
In both interior and exterior looks, however, the Mondeo is beginning to show its age. The cabin isn’t a bad place to sit by any means, but it does feel dated in places, especially around the central fascia which is coated in cheap-feeling black plastic.
The 2.0-litre TDCi engine still feels refined, if sounding a little strained at high revs. While there’s more than enough power on tap to make progress, above 3500rpm the noise from the engine into the cabin becomes intrusive. That’s a shame because otherwise noise dampening at speed is very good.
A six-speed manual transmission was fitted to our test car, although a six-speed automatic Powershift option is also available at a cost. The manual copes fine with most driving situations, but we did find it to be a little stiff around town.
Overall though, and most importantly to company car drivers, the Mondeo is a very comfortable, very confident motorway cruiser.
Should I buy one?
Chances are you won’t be buying one, but if your company decides to then you’ll quickly see why it’s been so consistently well ranked in recent years.
There’s a very good reason why the Mondeo still appears at the top of our list of great family cars. Even if it’s beginning to look dated, the interior bests the dull cabin of the Volkswagen Passat and with that excellent infotainment system it’s much easier to fathom technologically than the Mazda 6.
Not surprisingly, the super-frugal 1.6-litre TDCi is tipped to be the best seller in the range. Putting out just 112g/km CO2 it far beats the 2.0-litre TDCi at 129g/km and the 1.6-litre EcoBoost with 149g/km. If it was our decision, though, we’d choose the lower-powered diesel over the 2.0-litre driven here. The reason? It's an overall smoother experience at a lower price. In fact, Ford has already tipped that engine to be the biggest seller in the range.