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Ford C-MAX

MAX FACTOR (some text hidden)

Introductionword count: 18

Ford's C-MAX compact family people carrier is still a strong mid-sized MPV contender. June Neary checks it out.

Will It Suit Me?word count: 279

Families must be one big headache for car designers. Especially mine. We all have to share the same car but we've all got different ideas about what we want it to do. While one family member wants a vehicle to look good and drive with a little verve, another might want seats that are easy to fold down and lots of storage space. Certain factions in the family won't give two hoots about any of that. They'll be more interested in the maximum volume of stereo system, the quantity of 12-volt charging points for games consoles, whether their bikes will fit in the boot or how long it takes to colour-in the back of the headrest with a felt tip pen. Pleasing all of the family all of the time sounds impossible - but Ford's C-MAX MPV is up for giving it a good go. It's based on the brand's Focus hatch, a car that drives so beautifully that plonking a bulbous body on top of it and raising the centre of gravity would seem like a bad idea. But when I tried this C-MAX model, my first thought was that they'd delivered me a Focus hatch in error. With the sharp styling of the current car, it even looks the part. I even grew to like the fact that it didn't come fitted with endless rows of seats and nowhere to store my shopping. I'm trying to think of the last occasion that I needed to fit seven people into a car and I'm still thinking. Anyway, if I were to want that, Ford offers a 'Grand C-MAX' version of this design, complete with three rows of chairs.

Practicalitiesword count: 212

By the standards set by other compact MPVs, which aren't always the highest, the C-MAX is quite a handsome thing. The design of this improved MK2 model is evolutionary, with a strong, sleek front end that features Ford's distinctive inverted trapezoidal grille. Inside, I thought that the dash was a lot less fussy than that of the original version of this model, reflecting the customer-led design refinements that have already been executed on the Focus. There are relatively few controls and switches, while the smart black satin trim and chrome detailing contribute to a clean look. Functions are simple to use, such as the air-conditioning controls that feature buttons that are easy to recognise and distinguish from each other. Practicality is a strongpoint too, with a practical centre storage console. The seats still tumble down individually in one motion to create a flat floor, with over 470-litres of space with all five seats in place. As I mentioned, the C-MAX comes in two sizes. I tried the standard one, but bigger families will want the Grand C-MAX model which is fully 4,520mm long, with a wheelbase increased by 140mm compared to the ordinary car. It's also 40mm taller and these extended dimensions allow it to cram in that third row of seating.

Behind the Wheelword count: 164

There's nothing old fashioned about the C-MAX engine range, Ford having fitted a collection of leading edge powerplants littered with the kind of technology that the layman has no hope of understanding. The star of the engine line-up is the 120PS 1.5-litre TDCi diesel engine. There are also the multi-award winning 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol engines, offered once again in 100 and 125PS outputs. The big capacity diesel in the range is a 150PS 2.0-litre unit. And on the move? Well you always expect Fords to be good to drive, even family-orientated ones. I do anyway - and this C-MAX doesn't disappoint. Particular attention has been paid to improving refinement. Noise, vibration and harshness have been improved through the use of thicker side glass and more absorbent seals around the tailgate and rear view mirror. The engine bay heat shield has been filled with acoustic damping material to reduce powertrain noise and diesel variants are equipped with extra acoustic seals to further reduce noise intrusion.

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Pictures (high res disabled)

Statistics (subset of data only)

Min

Max

0-62 mph (s):

8.5

12.6

Combined mpg:

44.1

62.8

CO2 (g/km):

117

149

Extra urban mpg:

53.3

70.6

Height (mm):

1626

Insurance group:

10

22

... and 6 other stats available

Scoring (subset of scores)

Category: MPV People Carriers

Performance
70%
Handling
100%
Comfort
70%
Space
60%
Styling, Build, Value, Equipment, Depreciation, Handling, Insurance and Total scores are available with our full data feed.

This is an excerpt from our full review.
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