After a long search through a variety of MPVs, it was a straight fight between Honda's FRV and the S-MAX. Ford's extra seat and flexibility won the day. Both cars drove well, and although the Ford is noticeably noisier, it's road-holding is excellent. The only problem (so far) is Ford's atrocious customer service. Even though the car was 'checked' ,we took delivery of a car with headlights that didn't work (four bulbs blown). The dealer was unapologetic. Proper customer support would take the overall rating up to four stars, but I'm not holding my breath. Honda next time, methinks.
The new S-Max ticks all the boxes for a large family we have all the kids in the back and space for two push chairs + all the rubbish you have to take with you for a 6week old baby. The drive is great.well done to fords for getting it right.
I took delivery of my S-Max 1.8TDCi Zetec on September 1 2006. It is a lovely car to look at and drive.
Sadly, my ownership experience has been let down by a catalogue of silly faults that should have been picked up either by the factory or dealer PDI (pre-delivery inspection) - such as warped exterior trim items, no puncture repair kit, centre stowage box which would not lock, faulty FM aerial cable and third row seat not fully bolted in. Also the engine did not run correctly with terrible turbo lag. All these items have now been resolved by our Ford Dealer.
The worst problem, which the dealer cannot resolve, is that if you do not turn the ignition key full lock the engine can produce the most horrendous clattering sound but does not fire up. Ford is apparently aware of the fault, and is working on a fix for it.
Frankly, we have been on the verge of rejecting the vehicle, but there is nothing else on the market of that size that looks so good and handles so well!
Having purchased our S-Max at the end of July and following my previous entry dated 14/09/06 we have experienced three further problems with our vehicle. Only one week after being returned from the dealership (having already been off the road for 30 days) the starter motor failed and we had to get the vehicle towed back into the dealership where it spent a further two days off the road. A short period after the air flux pipe fell off from under the bonnet whilst driving on a dual carridge way, yet again more time off the road! Only last weekend an error message appeared on the dash regarding a fault with the alarm system, again the vehicle spent a further two days off the road. Ford have a great product in the S-Max but unfortunately the quaility of the build does not match the great looks of the vehicle. Again the Ford customer service team don't appear to be bothered about the customer as we have nearly done as many miles in the demonstrators and hire cars we have done in our own car!
When will Ford wake up and put their customers first?
It's a great car but the issues with quality and service have driven me to an overall rating of one star.
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