Ford has for a number of years been the masters of multi-person mobility. They’re famous for their vans under the Transit badge, but when it comes to creating MPVs they’re hard to beat. They have a small compact MPV in the B-Max, a midsized compact MPV with the Grand C-Max and the C-Max proper, and then they also offer the massive new Galaxy – that can comfortably seat seven adults. Below the Galaxy in size is the S-Max, and while this car is big, it doesn’t offer the same amount of space. However, it is one of the most spacious MPVs in its direct segment. This is among the ultimate in MPVs, and its biggest restriction to customers is its price.
Initially in Ireland there will only be two engine choices available. The diesel offering is the 2.0 Duratorq TDCi. This engine offers 150 PS and is feisty enough for an MPV offering. The official 0-100 km/h offering on this vehicle is 10.8 seconds. There is also an all-wheel drive version available using this engine – but be prepared to open the wallet even further for that. A tweaked version of the same engine offers 210 PS – but this is even more expensive. In terms of petrol Ford has made their 1.5 litre EcoBoost engine with 160 PS available.
Ford has done really well with all of their MPV offerings when it comes to ride and handling. They somehow manage to bring that small car feeling into their bigger cars. The S-Max deals well with twists in the road and it’s simple to corner. The suspension soaks up bumps and uneven road surfaces with ease. It doesn’t feel bumpy like some of the other MPVs in its class.
Of course, if turns and corners are taken too hastily there is a hint of body roll. This comes with the territory of vehicles of this size and the S-Max deals with it better than some of its competition.
The same engines are available in most Fords, and they are proving to be refined in most vessels that they are housed in. The S-Max does well in keeping road noise to a minimum.
There are only two trims available with the S-MAX, Zetec and Titanium. Titanium is the one with most on offer and with it comes front and rear view cameras, Power Fold 3rd row seats and rear sun blinds. For those of you who really want to spend, there is an option of Salerno leather seats available. These are heated to the front and they are extremely chunky and comfortable.
As standard with the Zetec model you will find among other items; 17 inch alloys, the new SYNC 2 infotainment system (which is much easier to use than the outgoing system), DAB radio and keyless start.
The S-Max is jam packed with airbags, and the new model has received a full five stars in the Euro NCAP. It scored brilliantly on both adult and child occupancy with 87%. The S-Max is also the first Ford to feature their new Dynamic LED Headlamps with Glare-Free High Beam. This ensures maximum illumination, and doesn’t distract oncoming traffic.
This is one of the best seven seat vehicles available on the Irish market. Seats 6 and 7 are ideal for children and they are comfortable too. Head and leg room is ample and with the third row folded down there is plenty of boot space.