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Dees Wimbledon
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Ford S-Max Review

Ford has never been one to follow bandwagon standards and the Ford S-Max is just one of the many firsts the company released to provide a driver-oriented, sporty, desirable, full-size seven-seat MPV. This vehicle became a favorite among the MPVs at first but there were also disagreements when the S-Max had to undergo its mid-life revisions. Read on to know how the vehicle fared throughout its life and how it expects to perform given the current market trends.

Pros

Although the S-Max and Galaxy appear similar, Ford distinguished these vehicles in its interior. The S-Max has a lower height by 69mm. Other different features include the aggressive front appearance, a slimmer grille, slatted air vents below the bumper line, circular fog lights, and a subtly placed raked roofline. Other features include the larger trapezoidal lower air intake, a shorter and unbulkier rear, and front wheelarch vents. The facelifted S-Max models offer other design additions such as reshaped LED tail-lights, deeper front and rear bumpers, a more contoured bonnet, and a glass chrome surround. The Titanium X Sport models feature a pronounced front valance, a lower grille, and smart-looking twin chrome-ended exhausts.

The interior features an impressive 2m long load bay that forms when both seat rows are flattened and tucked into the floor. The seating pattern itself is 5+2, meaning the rearmost seat pairs are for children. But the headroom and legroom is enough for adults to bear on both long and short journeys. Up front five adults won’t have any problem fitting in their headroom, elbows, and legs. Seats are also supportive and have a decent shape. Drivers will have no problems fitting into the upright position and getting accustomed to the windscreen angled tilt of the steering wheel. The seat’s front edge is positioned high enough from the pedals.

All of the S-Max’s engines were given a complete overhaul: while the 2.0-litre diesel units at 138bhp and 161bhp are still available, the 2.2 TDCi at 197bhp and 1.6-litre at 114bhp diesel have been added to the range as well. But the real star are the petrols, such as the Ecoboost at 237bhp and the entry-level 1.6 Ecoboost at 158bhp. Tying up the powerful petrol units is the 2.0-litre at 143bhp. Maximum performance is achieved through the 200bhp Ecoboost and its turbodiesel like performance. Expect an 8.7 second mark for its 60mph sprint and only 7.9 seconds to achieve acceleration from 30 to 70 mph.

Cons

The downside to the powerful Ecoboost is its 34mpg fuel economy and the 194g/km CO2 emissions. The 2.0-litre petrol pales in comparison next to the turbocharged version and even the 1.6-litre Ecoboost trumps this smaller engine. On the upside, the 2.0-litre petrol provides better economy and lower CO2 emissions.

The current S-Max model still retains the basic suspension architecture that has carried the brand’s ride and handling. Enjoyment is effortless, along with comfort, proper steering, and grip. The ride, however, sometimes tends to get stiff but is still comfortable enough for long family rides. 

The interior almost matches up to luxury brands but given its affordability, the S-Max does employ cheaper looking plastics at the rear area.

What do you think?

(Average rating: 5 , Total rates: 5 )

The Ford S-Max: A quick look

The Ford S-Max is an MPV introduced to the European and Chinese markets by the Ford Motor Company and the Chang’an Ford Automobile Co., Ltd, respectively. To tap into other markets, there are plans of selling the S-Max under Mazda in Japan. Designed by David Hilton, the S-Max was intended to combine the spaciousness of an MPV with the sporty stylings of a saloon, drawing inspiration from the seven-seater Galaxy and the Ford C-Max.

First revealed at the Geneva Motor Show in 2006, the S-Max is reported to be related to vehicles like the Ford Mondeo and Ford Galaxy. Top Gear also reviewed the S-Max alongside the Mercedes B200 and Vauxhall Zafira, noting that while it was the cheapest it was still the most comfortable to drive and had the best exterior and interior design of the three.

The Ford S-Max is still in production today though it was given a facelift in 2010. As the first Ford vehicle to use Kinetic Design styling, the S-Max featured angular headlights, large wheel arches, and two trapezoidal grills. Additionally, a major selling point for this vehicle is the Fold Flat System where seats at the second and third row can be folded into the floor to provide extra storage space when needed.

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