Ford has released images and spec details of the all-new Ford Mondeo, allots a year before in enters UK showrooms.
Almost 80mm longer than the outgoing model — and the current model has been criticised for being too big — the 2013 Mondeo will go head-to-head with the Vauxhall Insignia and Volkswagen Passat.
But by stepping up the standard of finish and luxury inside the cabin, Ford believes the car will be able to steal sales away from the likes of BMW, Audi and Mercedes.
Not scheduled to go on sale until “September 2013 at the earliest”, because of production delays, the new Mondeo has larger front and rear overhangs. The wheelbase remains the same as the current ,odel.
Without question, the biggest styling difference comes at the front where new, slimmer, all-LED headlights, and an Aston Martin-esque ‘trapezoidal’ grille have been fitted.
Look carefully and you’ll notice there’s also a sharper crease along the flanks, while the side profile and window line are reminiscent of the current car’s.
At the rear there’s a smoother bumper, a curvier bootlid and slimmer tail-lights.
Inside the cabin — which is unlikely to change in rearms of interior space — Ford has used more soft-touch and premium finishes.
Options will include Sync, which brings an eight-inch colour touch-screen, voice control and the ability to offer a Wi-Fi hotspot for up to five devices. The estate model will offer the option of a panoramic sunroof. The line-up of safety equipment now includes inflatable rear seatbelts that are designed to reduce head, neck and chest injuries.
The engine line-up will get a major overhaul, with the inclusion of smaller petrol and diesel motors, plus the option of four-wheel drive.
Ford’s 1.0-litre turbocharged three-cylinder Ecoboost unit will appear in the Mondeo for the first time. Likely to be offered in various states of tune, it will start with the 123bhp spec already used in the Ford Focus. Don’t be surprised to eventually see a 177bhp version of the little unit.
There will also be at least two versions of Ford’s 2.0-litre turbocharged diesel. And the current 1.6 turbodiesel is predicted to be replaced by the new, more efficient 1.5-litre engine already seen in the smaller B-Max. It’s likely to bring the Mondeo’s CO2 emissions down to less than 110g/km.
Four-wheel-drive will be offered as an option in partnership with the Mondeo’s larger diesel engine in all three bodystyles, five-door hatch, four-door saloon and estate.