Good position and lots of adjustability; no electric adjustment unless you pay extra
Every Mondeo gets manual seat adjustment, unless you go for a high-end Titanium model and add the Titanium X Pack, which brings 10-way electric seat adjustment. That puts the Mondeo at a disadvantage against the Passat, because that gets partial electric seat adjustment as standard from mid-spec trim, but the Ford’s manual adjusters are still easy to use. There’s a broad range of movement to the seat, and you get height and lumbar adjustment as standard, even on entry-level Style trim.
The wide, relatively soft seat will also be comfortable even on a long journey, and a cushioned lid for the central cubby doubles as a fixed but well-placed armrest.
Most of the car’s systems are accessed via an 8.0in touchscreen or the driver’s information readout in the instrument binnacle. This means the dashboard is left with a fairly sparse array of easy-to-reach buttons, including the straightforward air-con controls.
Ford Mondeo visibility
Visibility isn’t great, and parking sensors aren’t standard
This isn’t a Mondeo strong point. The raked back, chunky front pillars can partially obscure your view at junctions, and the sloping roofline and wide rear pillars cause big blindspots over your shoulder. Also, because it’s such a big car with fairly swoopy lines, it can be hard to judge the Mondeo’s extremities in tight parking spots. Having said that, many rivals suffer similarly average visibility, including the Mazda 6, although the VW Passat is substantially better.
Unfortunately, you don’t get rear parking sensors as standard on any trim; you have to pay a fair amount to get front and rear sensors, or go without. If you do want them, you might as well pay a little extra and get the full Active Park Assist, which adds an automatic parking system that steers the car into a parallel or perpendicular space for you. This isn’t available on entry-level Style versions, however, and neither are the optional rear-view camera nor blindspot-monitoring systems.
A heated windscreen is standard from Zetec trim upwards, and means you can clear the screen of ice and condensation much faster than by using the air-con system alone.
Ford Mondeo infotainment
Lots of kit, but the touchscreen system isn’t the easiest to use
All Mondeos get a digital radio, voice control, Bluetooth handsfree and audio streaming, and an 8.0in touchscreen system, which has decent graphics but can show up fingerprints badly – particularly in direct sunlight. The system’s useability is more of a problem, though. While it’s easy to access the key functions from the home menu – which is split into four sections – from there on you’ve got plenty of small icons that are tricky to push precisely, and it can be hard to figure out how to complete some simple functions. If you have sat-nav, for instance (an affordable option on Style and Zetec versions, and standard on Titanium trim), it takes lots of prodding and more menus than you’d expect to simply input a postcode.
The voice control is effective, and allows you to select an artist from your USB-connected MP3 player and even change the cabin temperature.
You can also control just about every audio function via the buttons on the steering wheel, but the sheer number of controls can be a bit confusing. With two USB connections and two 12v sockets – one in the front and one in the back – charging your phone or MP3 player shouldn’t be a problem. An upgraded stereo is an option on Titanium models.
Ford Mondeo build quality
Not as good as a VW Passat
The Mondeo is a fair bit cheaper to buy than a Passat, and this shows in the interior. It doesn’t feel low-rent by any means, but there are some poorly damped switches and a few cheap-feeling materials. The matt-finish dashboard is also not as high quality as the dense, textured materials you get in some rivals.
Having said that, the general fit and finish feels solid, and the combination of gloss, matt and metal finishes help make the cabin look decently upmarket.
In short, the Mondeo’s perceived quality is good for the price.