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In-depth reviews

Ford S-MAX review - MPG, CO2 and Running Costs

Not as efficient as rivals, petrol engines should be avoided if fuel economy is priority

Overall Auto Express Rating

4.0 out of 5

MPG, CO2 and Running Costs Rating

3.5 out of 5

Price
£38,540 to £42,150
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The Ford S-MAX has never been the most economical MPV, and that hasn’t changed with this latest iteration. While the diesels won’t break the bank, rivals like the Citroen Grand C4 SpaceTourer are cheaper to fuel and tax, so if running costs are of the utmost importance you might want to look elsewhere.

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The most frugal diesel under the latest WLTP test procedure is the 148bhp 2.0 TDCi 150. It’ll do up to 53.3mpg and has minimum emissions of 132g/km. Go for a higher-spec model with larger wheels and more kit, and these figures will deteriorate slightly. The more powerful 187bhp 2.0 TDCi 190 has figures of 51.4mpg and 132g/km, which isn't too bad a compromise.

Adding four-wheel drive or an automatic gearbox does no favours for the fuel consumption, either – the 2.0 TDCi 150 AWD manual 4x4 auto manages up to 50.4mpg and emissions of 149g/km, while the front-wheel drive auto also returns 50.4mpg and 139g/km emissions. The 190PS AWD auto returns up to 46.3mpg and emissions as low as 153g/km.

The discontinued 1.5 EcoBoost petrol model isn't a great performer at the pumps. It has a claimed WLTP best of 38.7mpg, while emissions of 169g/km are around 20g/km higher than the diesels.

As for other running costs, the S-MAX is a large car and existing owners have reported heavy tyre wear, particularly on the front wheels. Service intervals are 12,500 miles for every model, while the 650-strong dealer network means there’ll be a Ford workshop near you to fix any problems. Ford also offers an annual fixed-price servicing deal for around £125 to £200 depending on the level of cover required.

Insurance groups

As you’d expect there is also a 60,000-mile or three year warranty (which ever comes first) on the S-MAX. Insurance groups have also been kept reasonably low, starting from 16 and rising to 27 for the more powerful Vignale versions.

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Which Is Best

Cheapest

  • Name
    2.0 EcoBlue Zetec 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £30,700

Most Economical

  • Name
    2.5 FHEV 190 Titanium 5dr CVT
  • Gearbox type
    Auto
  • Price
    £38,240

Fastest

  • Name
    2.0 EcoBlue 190 ST-Line 5dr Auto
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £37,400
Senior test editor

Dean has been part of the Auto Express team for more than 20 years, and has worked across nearly all departments, starting on magazine production, then moving to road tests and reviews. He's our resident van expert, but covers everything from scooters and motorbikes to supercars and consumer products.

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