My year behind the wheel of the Mondeo seemed no where near as long as that, and with a total of 18,400 miles completed.
I knew it would be subjected to high mileage, which was one of the reasons I chose it with Ford’s Powershift automatic transmission.
It’s a dual-clutch six-speed gearbox which offers the smoothness of a conventional automatic transmission, but with a reduced CO2 and fuel consumption penalty.
The CO2 emissions of 149g/km from the Mondeo’s 163bhp 2.0 TDCi diesel are significantly lower than the 187g/km achieved with the conventional automatic transmission available with the earlier 140bhp version of the engine.
Although 149g/km is only slightly higher than the standard manual gearbox’s 139g/km, I found that using the manual function to shift up through the gears about 500rpm sooner than the car would in automatic mode would improve fuel consumption.
It meant the difference between mid-40mpg fuel consumption to high-40mpg – the highest achieved during the year-long test was 49mpg.
Long-distance comfort was excellent, and the automatic gearbox helped save my left leg from repeatedly using the clutch in the many hours I spent crawling through traffic.
With its substantial 235/40 R18 tyres, last winter could have caused significant mobility problems. However, in October we switched to cold-weather rubber, and ran Michelin Pilot Alpin tyres for the next five months.
The Mondeo instantly performed better on wet roads, with much improved grip and traction, but when it snowed the new tyres were a revelation. When it comes to wintry weather, many people think they need four-wheel drive, forgetting that stopping their vehicle is at least as important as making it go.
The car’s braking performance was perhaps the most impressive aspect of driving it on cold weather tyres.
While we were running the car, the Mondeo underwent its mid lifecycle facelift. Our car was using one of the latest diesel engines introduced in April 2010, but in October 2010, the Mondeo received cosmetic changes, including revised instruments and new dashboard materials, as well as a new bonnet and the availability of LED daytime running lights.
But the fundamentals were unchanged, and our car ends its life on our fleet still looking as up-to-date as the latest versions.