Grand C takes MPV to the Max
THE festive spirit is alive and well in Scotland and I’ve just returned from a wonderful weekend trip to nearby Edinburgh.
There’s always a buzz in our capital city but it’s extra special for kids and adults at this time with its festive mar-kets, lights and other attractions.
I was the driver on this occasion with my wife Jackie up front and our friends Janis and Stewart in the back.
We could have added another two or three passen-gers as my test car was Ford’s seven-seater Grand C-Max.
I don’t get the chance too often to test the rear seat comforts so it was good to hear the views of the two six-footers seated behind me.
And they gave it a big thumbs up, thanks to the amount of leg, head and elbow room and smooth ride.
Another big plus were the rear sliding doors that allow easy entry and exit.
The five-seater C-Max has been a popular model for Ford with 1.2 million sold in Europe since its launch in 2003 and last year’s third generation models brought the bigger Grand C-Max with its extra seats.
And that has added lots more flexibility to this MPV.
This includes a ‘walk-through’ seat design with the centre seat in the middle row sliding under one of the side seats, allowing access to the two easy-to-pop-up third row seats.
Up front, I liked the high seating position that allowed good all-round vision.
All models are well kitted out with three trim levels available – Zetec, Titanium and Titanium X.
The test car was a Titanium model with a 1.5 TDCI engine.
Producing 120ps, this unit offers up to six per cent improvement in CO compared to the 1.8-litre diesel it replaced and delivers 5ps more power.
It provided plenty of power going up and down a smooth six-speed manual gearbox.
Fuel consumption figures show this model is capable of achieving 57.7mpg urban, 68.9mpg extra urban and 64.2mpg combined.
What impressed most though was the excellent ride and handling.
The Grand C-Max is right up there as one of the top MPVs when it comes to cornering with quick and precise stee-ring at speed as well as good road grip.
With a top speed of 112mph, it cruised along quietly and ever so smoothly at maximum motorway speeds and ride comfort was good even on some potholed minor roads.
The stylish interior included sports-style front seats with driver seat lumbar adjust.
An extensive spec also gives you 17-inch 15-spoke alloys, LED day running lights, front fog lights, auto headlamps, rain sensing wipers, dual zone auto temperature control, powerfold heated mirrors, rear parking sensors and tyre pressure monitoring system.
There’s keyless entry, power starter button, cruise control with speed limiter, chrome finish on upper door line and scuff plates with Ford logo
The SYNC 2 system with eight-inch colour touch screen features voice control for hands-free operation of audio, navigation, climate control and connected mobile phone functions.
A worthwhile £550 option on the test car was the driver assistance pack that brings you active city stop, lane departure warning, lane keeping aid, traffic sign recognition, driver alert and auto high beam.
And a welcome £325 option for the winter months was the £325 winter pack of heated front seats and steering wheel.
Costing £23,795, this Grand C-Max Titanium represents excellent value and would definitely be on my Santa wish list.