In the old days in Europe, if you wanted a true luxurious car, you bought an American car. Nowadays, even Americans are done with American luxury cars. Sometimes however, history repeats.
(In order to write a review for the Dutch car site dagelijksauto.nl, Ford loaned me the new Mondeo Hybrid Wagon for a week. It was in a glorious color called Urban Teal. We need more teal on the road)
More and more hybrid cars appear on the road, and Ford does not want to stay behind. One of the first hybrids they offer is the Mondeo Hybrid, which is basically the American Ford Fusion. It was only available as a sedan. Because sedans are not very popular in Europe, early 2019 the Mondeo Hybrid Wagon was introduced.
The hybrid Mondeo Wagon was developed especially for Europe. This means Americans can’t have it. So basically the Mondeo Hybrid Wagon is an American car for the European market. The American roots show clearly: for example, the dashboard can be switched from kilometers to miles with a push of a button. But also its comfortable drive reminds us of an American car of the past.
The design of the Mondeo has been around for some time, but there’s not much ugly here. The distinctive gaping mouth and the angry looking headlights make the Mondeo look tough. No high body lines, but a timeless design and decent-sized windows. The only line from front to back hides the handle bars. This is a car you can show off!
While driving the Mondeo Hybrid Wagon, the comfort stands out. The 2-liter petrol engine and the electric motor together produce 187hp, with which the Mondeo comes along nicely with other traffic. The large weight of 1716 kilo (3783lb) makes the car feel like a massive brick to move: it does not invite you to drive fast. You do not feel the eCVT automatic shift and it keeps the revs low.
Despite the weight the Mondeo Wagon handles nicely. It does not lean in corners. The steering makes you take corners with confidence and bad road conditions go unnoticed. The feel of comfort is fed even more by the silence in the car: there is hardly any engine sound or wind noise and sounds from outside are not coming in.
The hybrid technology works best at American highway speeds, which is a lot slowed than Europeans are allowed to drive on the highways. Because of that the electric engine seems redundant on the highway. We only got 15 kilometers to the liter (35mpg) which is not very good for a hybrid wagon compared to the competition.
Graphs, graphs, graphs
You can monitor the fuel consumption very well: the dashboard shows more graphs than the average management meeting. On the left and right side of the analog speedometer the digital screens can be configured to exactly what you want to see. You can keep your eye on how much brake energy you produce, if the battery is charging or if you are using the petrol engine.
We were a bit baffled by the “efficiency leaves”: this sounds like it was thought up during a creative session that lasted way too long. Still the green tree leaves make you feel ‘zen’. If a leave flies away after pressing the go-pedal to firmly, you do feel resonsible for your little dashboard garden.
Lots of Space
The sloping console makes the interior look spacy but it makes some of the buttons on the passenger’s side hard to reach. The dashboard looks clean because there are few buttons and knobs. The steering wheel however is filled with buttons, making a weird contrast. Luckily there is no tacked on touchscreen here. A lot of functions can only be used via the screen, but luckily Sync3 works fine.
The Mondeo offers a lot of space. Also in the back there’s enough room for adults, especially with the long roofline of the Wagon. Because of the batteries the floor in the boot is a bit higher but it leaves more than enough space for your stuff. A button here operates the automatic tow hook, unfortunately the hybrid Mondeo can only tow 750 kilo (1650lb).
The Ford Mondeo offers more luxury than you think at first. The materials used in the interior feel nice. The audio system proves you can have great sound without a lot of fancy names or logos. Heated front seats, adjustable steering wheels with memory and back-up-camera make life easier, while adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assistant and blind spot detection makes life safer.
In the Netherlands Ford also offers the Mondeo Wagon as diesel, but because of taxes the most expensive Hybrid Mondeo (the Vignale) is less expensive than the most basic diesel.
In comfort and driving pleasure this Mondeo Wagon reminded us of the luxury American barges of yesteryear. It does so without bragging. The hybrid technology is not translated in a low fuel consumption, but it is enough to get a tax break. After all that’s what counts most for most people.
European people, that is. Because Americans can’t have it.