The all-new Ford Mondeo finally goes on sale in the UK and Europe later this year – its been on sale in the USA, badged Fusion, since last year.
Ford has released the first technical details for the fifth-generation Mondeo, which is lighter, stronger more efficient and more technologically advanced.
The bodyshell uses lightweight, high-strength steel, reducing the Mondeo’s weight by as much as 115kg. A magnesium tailgate structure weighs around 40 per cent less than a steel equivalent; removing various joints saves 2.5kg; 6kg has gone from the B-pillar, and so on.
The ‘shell has been carefully designed to provide as much crash protection as possible. The safety innovations extend to the interior too, with an inflatable rear seatbelt that disperses crash forces across an area five times greater than a conventional ‘belt, reducing the risk of injury. There’s another nine airbags, as well.
The Mondeo is also the first Ford with a pedestrian detection system, which works at speeds of up to 50mph.
Under the bonnet, the engine range is either heavily revised or all-new. The base option is Ford’s award-winning 1.0-litre, three-cylinder EcoBoost petrol engine, producing 123bhp. Above it is a 158bhp version of the new 1.5-litre EcoBoost. A 2.0-litre EcoBoost with 200bhp or 237bhp rounds out the petrol options.
Not that anyone really buys a Mondeo with a petrol engine anymore. Much more relevant are the diesel options. Topping the range is a 207bhp version of the 2.0 TDCi unit with a new twin-sequential turbocharger set-up. In single-turbo form it comes in 148bhp and 178bhp tunes, both with the option of four-wheel-drive.
The frugally-minded can choose the 1.6-litre ECOnetic diesel, which will deliver Co2 emissions of as little as 94g/km. Or there’s the hybrid version, which combines a 2.0-litre petrol engine with two electric motors.
Mondeos have always been known for their handling prowess, and the new car promises to be even better, with a Europe-specific set-up. The attention to detail was such that the rear suspension bushes went through five redesigns before the engineers were happy.
It is the first car to use Ford’s new, stiffer integral link rear suspension system, which improves both handling and ride. Active systems like Torque Vectoring Control, Pull-Drift Compensation and Active Nibble Compensation (no sniggering at the back) keep it pointing in the right direction.
The new Mondeo was originally unveiled all the way back in 2011, but European production was delayed when Ford decided to close the Belgian factory that usually produces the car, and switch to its plant in Spain.
So it needs to be good to make up for the delay. On paper, at least, it’s looking very good.
Visit the Ford website here