Ford S-Max hybrid: an “eco-friendly” minivan subject to a … big penalty!

It’s the end! However, Ford doesn’t want to see his S-Max die! This elegant minivan, in line with the Renault Espace, caused a stir in 2006. Dynamic, lowered compared to its competitors at the time, it was innovative because of its dynamic nature. Sixteen years later, his former success is sadly just a memory. Renovated in 2015, it was equipped, before its withdrawal, with the ultramodern hybrid engine of the Ford Kuga SUV. Gasoline-electric technology close to that of Toyota, with a planetary gear train of CVT effect, the variation of the ratio of which is controlled by an electric motor that acts as a generator.

Despite the joint patents, the engines and the box called e-CVT are indeed of Ford origin. The front wheels are powered by the electric propulsion engine that announces 125 horsepower, or the large atmospheric 2.5 of 152 horsepower, or both if necessary. But the two powers do not combine! Electric traction works with a 1.1 kWh lithium ion battery that can travel between 2 and 3 kilometers in zero emission mode. Not much. But the system recharges quickly when braking.

Generous living space

We find what made the S-Max charming, that is, an original line and generous living space. Accessibility is handy, though it doesn’t look extraordinary in the front seats due to an overly rounded roof arch. Ford has also studied the functionality well, with sliding and individually adjustable rear seats. The third one disappears, he, perfectly in the ground of the trunk, conserving a great prey. So we have all the advantages of the real minivan. We also appreciate the brilliance, despite the thick mounts in front.

The dashboard is more opulent than the previous one before 2015, with fewer fake plastics. The build quality seems to have improved. But the crunch and squeaks, incongruous in a car of this price, have not yet been erased. Damage on the wrong track. The driving position is good. The seats properly support the back when taking the curves. But we regret the uniform black atmosphere. It seems that Ford has completely forgotten about interior colors a few years ago, which in the 90’s and early 2000’s made their cars warm. Why this darkness? Sure, it simplifies manufacturing with fewer variants on an assembly line, but it’s sad. Fortunately, the equipment is provided, as usual at Ford. But the ergonomics seem a bit messy at first glance. With a little practice, though, we’ll appreciate setting up security alerts with a button on the left, behind the wheel. However, we will criticize the pre-collision warning, thunderous and too sensitive, which screams brutally and often, in case of danger … imaginary or at least very unlikely. Quickly irritating.

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