The Ford B-Max may not be near the top of your fleet buying list, but is it worth considering?
That’s the question we’ll be asking of our latest long-termer, as it joins our test fleet for evaluation.
Launched in late 2012, the car, built on the Fiesta platform, counts space, and access to that space, as its key selling points.
Legroom in the front and back is reasonable, and loading access to the boot is easy, partially thanks to a false floor that’s included as standard – unlike many other vehicles.
The car’s trump card, though, is the rear sliding doors. Combined with the lack of a B-pillar, it makes access to the rear, whether for passengers or belongings, exceptionally easy, especially in tight supermarket car parks.
Delivered with just 270 miles on the clock, our B-Max is in Titanium trim, which features a good level of standard equipment, including cruise control, Sony radio, climate control, and LED daytime running lights.
In addition to the standard kit, our car has a few options added - Deep Impact Blue metallic (£495), privacy glass (£200), DAB and navigation (£400), and what Ford calls the City Pack – rear parking sensors and powerfolding mirrors (£200) – completes the line up, adding £1,295 to the base price.
Our car is powered by Ford’s Dagenham-built 1.6 litre TDCi diesel engine, which is said to deliver a combined 70.6mpg, along with 104g/km CO2.
First impressions are good. The seats are fairly upright, which combined with the tall windscreen gives a good view of the road, although it does make the wing mirrors seem a little low. The cupholders and net storage for rear passengers beside the seats are also a nice touch, making up for the lack of door bins on those sliding doors.
My biggest problem so far is that I still can’t stop reaching high over my shoulder for the seatbelt. As there’s no B-pillar, the front belts are cleverly integrated into the seat itself – but if that’s the biggest problem to date, our time with the B-Max should be pleasant.
So far, we’ve added 350 miles to the delivery mileage, and are averaging 51.7mpg driven carefully - so it’ll be interesting to see if that’ll increase in time.