Reality can be a real pain in the back-side of your aspirations. That two seater sports car you crave? Reality check, you have three children. A luxury yacht to sail along the south coast of Spain? Oh, hang on, you are not a millionaire. Though these super luxury items are what many of us hanker for, from the moment you wake up from these daydreams the fact is that in life you have to deal with such realities. That said, these real life scenarios needn’t be an obstacle to you going about your day as proven by Ford’s new Tourneo Connect.
The Tourneo Connect is Fords interpretation of what they think a highly functional “people mover” should be. Throughout Europe the demand for vehicles in this segment has grown dramatically and with cars such as the Citroen Berlingo already being well established, the blue oval has decided it is time to claim their slice of the pie. A quick flight to Germany finds us in Poing with the keys to a Tourneo Connect equipped with Fords very highly rated 1.0 litre EcoBoost engine.
In Solar, a sort of golden yellow colour, our test car really showed many of the design elements that makes the Tourneo Connect more than a van with windows. Its cascading front features sport the familiar family face and proportionally looks much more car-like. Visually, I think it has to be said, this car is quite pleasing to eye with some strong body lines that emphasise a purposeful stance.
Sliding open the rear door provides best access to the rear of the car in its class and also reveals a well packaged cabin. Seating five with plenty of luggage space, the interior feels vast with a lot of natural light being allowed to enter the car. This Titanium model featured a glass panel in the roof which makes the already lofty amount of head room feel infinite. The dashboard makes the driver at home with a premium layout found on many other Fords in todays line-up. As for the seats themselves, they proved to be nicely supportive and, much like the rest of the interior, looked very durable. The Ford Tourneo Connect is versatile in its loading capabilities. With a split rear bench that can also be folded completely flat lends it to being the perfect partner for people in the decorating profession, or just those super active families who feel the unrelenting need to go kayaking. A low lip at the rear and large entrance to the back further champions the cars practicality. A 7 seat Grand Tourneo is also available.
On the road the first thing that strikes you about this little Tourneo is how much it feels like a standard family hatchback to drive. There is no sense of compromise between a normal car and this machine which offers so much function. The steering is direct and in tandem with torque vectoring it is responsive allowing for accurate placement of a fairly large car. Visibility all around is unrestricted and promotes a sense of confidence whilst driving in urban environments. Ford’s famed 1.0 litre engine that is literally no bigger than an A4 sheet of paper performs well in built up areas, cleanly pulling away and plucky enough to go for a gap at junctions. However, on more open roads the smaller capacity petrol engine did not suit the character of the Tourneo. It is very capable of holding its own on the motorway, thanks in part to a very nice 6 speed gearbox, but the diesel option would seem to be the logical choice if these sorts of journeys were to be regular. Officially the 1.0 litre EcoBoost engine will return 50.4MPG. The ride may not be class leading but the suspension components do a good of trying to minimise body role in what is a tall car. Something else to mention about this specific Tourneo Connect is that it is equipped with Active City Stop, a clever system that will stop the car from colliding with another ahead of it at low speeds or minimise damage at slightly higher ones.
Overall the Ford Tourneo Connect provides a practical and relatively good looking alternative to the establishment. A 100,000 mile warranty and strong residual values will no doubt make this car popular. Another plus the Connect has is that it is extremely competitively priced starting at just £14,425. It might not be the fictional Ferrari of your dreams, but it could become the most versatile tool of your reality.