2003 Ford Mondeo LX 2.0 TDCi 130 BHP from UK and Ireland
Minor faults not enough to detract from superb handling, comfort, performance and good build quality
Fuel rail needed replacing. Identified by dealer when servicing.
Spare (non push button) key wouldn't activate/deactivate alarm, due to faulty alarm system from day one.
Boot door wouldn't close on two separate occasions. First time fixed by RAC, second time required new boot latch.
For all of it's faults (as listed), it redeems itself, in terms of comfort, handling and performance as being the best car I have ever driven and (being a company car driver), it's had a lot of competition with rental cars etc...
...Just within the past year I've had BMW 3 series, Mercedes, Toyota Avensis & Corolla, Renault Laguna & Scenic, Mazda 6, VW Bora, Peugeot 306, Vauxhall Vectras, Ford Focuses and the Mitsubishi Carisma and it's miles better then any of them.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know
Review Date: 26th October, 2004
Agree totally with your comments about the Mondeo being better than others, including BMWs and Mercs - probably the two most over-rated vehicles out there. Still, if its 'common sales-rep image' helps keep Mondeo prices down for us 'less privileged mortals' then I'm not complaining :)
Oh how I laughed at the comment of 26th October 2004 re the 406 being miles better.
The 406 handles and rides brilliantly, and is both refined very comfortable, that much is true. Unfortunately, it is also an unreliable, badly made and very poorly supported pile of junk.
I've had two as company cars. The first one, a 1.9 TD LX broke down seven times in two years with everything from a total electrical failure (at 1 am on the M1), to a clutch failure caused by contamination from a blown rear main oil seal at just 25,000 miles. There were also problems with the dash electronics, the central locking, the "STOP" warning light, the glowplugs, the wheel bearings and the electric windows. This car also had an amusing habit of winding miles onto the odometer when completely stationary. During one jam on the M25 on a Friday afternoon, the odometer added 11 miles to itself with the car stationary and handbrake on.
The second, a 110PS 2.0 HDi GLX facelift model was even worse. The ECU died after a week, the fuel gauge went faulty, the climate control had a mind of its own, the idle speed was all over the place, and the small ends starting rattling at 45,000 miles requiring a complete replacement engine - not uncommon on these 90/110 PS HDi engines I found after a bit of research. Oh, and I ran out of fuel once with 35 miles remaining showing on the fuel computer. When the AA turned up and refilled it with fuel, the interior electronics went haywire, went into ECO mode and wouldn't come out. There was then a smell of burning inside the car and all the electrics quit totally. It went back into the dealership on a tow-truck.
As if the car wasn't bad enough, the dealer was hopeless. They were always "inventing" problems on the car to get more money at service time, yet getting them to fix genuine faults was impossible. It took them a week to find out the ECU had died on the HDi and despite seven visits, they never cured the erratic idle speed. I also had to wait eleven weeks for a service slot at one time, and then they started arguing about the car having gone 1,000 miles over its recommended service date. All other local dealers were similarly "booked up", although with the reliability problems of these cars, it wasn't completely baffling as to why.
The 406 is a pretty car, and it is well specified and very good to drive. However, I would never pay my own money for something so shoddily engineered and terminally unreliable.