From June 2008 issue

List price when tested: £24,395
Kerbweight: 1600kg
85% match: 1360kg
Max towing weight: 1800kg
Towball limit: 90kg
Braking 30-0mph: 11.8m

THE FORD Mondeo makes a stable, practical towcar. Go for the 2.5 petrol and it’s a remarkably quick one, too. We hitched the Ford to an Abbey Expression 470 with an MTPLM of 1310kg. The 2.5-turbo engine dragged car and caravan from 30-60mph in just 8.2 seconds. That’s one of the quickest acceleration figures we’ve ever recorded.

The Ford isn’t just quick, it’s stable, too. We found the Mondeo relaxing to drive at the legal limit, and composed through our lane-change test. The Ford also tackled the hill start test well, although the armrest made pulling on the handbrake a little awkward.

Great fun to drive

Leave the caravan behind and the Mondeo 2.5 is great fun to drive, with nimble handling and performance to embarrass many sports cars.
Passengers should be happy as well as the driver. There’s plenty of space inside for one six-footer to sit behind another, and the huge luggage area makes this one of the most practical estate cars of its size. Fold the seats down and there’s a generous 1733 litres to fill.

However, a lot of litres will go into the petrol tank, too. Official figures promise 30.4mpg, and on our towing economy route we could do no better than 20mpg. Insurance premiums are also high and this Mondeo doesn’t hold its value especially well. Whichever way you look at it, running costs are high.

Impressive though the Mondeo 2.5 Estate is, we can’t help but feel that one of the diesel models will make a better buy for the majority of caravanners.

We say
Towing: 4/5
Solo: 5/5
Practicality: 5/5
Buying & owning: 2/5

Verdict: 4/5. Quick, stable and practical, but fuel economy is poor.

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