3.3 out of 5 3.3
Parkers overall rating: 3.3 out of 5 3.3

Smallest of Ford's MPVs is good to drive, but feeling its age

Ford C-MAX (10-19) - rated 3.3 out of 5
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At a glance

New price £17,510 - £29,035
Used price £2,300 - £20,895
Used monthly cost From £57 per month
Fuel Economy 32.5 - 48.7 mpg
Road tax cost £0 - £210
Insurance group 10 - 27 How much is it to insure?


  • Great to drive
  • Quality interior
  • Plenty of interior space
  • Good equipment levels


  • Trim choice limited
  • Lacks latest equipment
  • Button-heavy dashboard
  • Three-star Euro NCAP rating

Ford C-MAX rivals

Written by Tom Wiltshire on

Ford didn’t invent the MPV sector, but it’s the only car manufacturer that offers three distinct models in the class - the Galaxy, the S-Max and this, the C-Max. Throughout its life, the C-Max has been a usefully compact MPV based on the same underpinnings as the mighty - and huge-selling - Focus hatchback.

But with the irrepressible onward march of the family SUV replacing the humble MPV in the hearts and minds of British buyers, is there still space for the C-Max in the market?

Quite an old model now

To be blunt, car manufacturers don’t want to invest much into MPVs at the current point in time due to a general lack of interest worldwide. With the buying public far more interested in SUVs, there’s not a huge market for MPVs like the C-Max - which is why it’s remained on sale without much change since 2011.

What does that mean? Well, it should mean good deals in showrooms, with reasonable finance packages and potentially big discounts as dealerships try to shift models while they still can.

However, there are other considerations of buying a design that’s this old. The C-Max can’t be specified with the very latest safety equipment such as lane-keeping assist or even LED headlights. It only scored three stars in the Euro NCAP safety tests, too.

You won’t find a great deal of posh equipment inside, either. The C-Max doesn’t get clever items like a digital gauge cluster or wireless smartphone charging pad - the infotainment system feels like it’s a generation behind its rivals, such as the Citroen C4 Spacetourer, and the overall design isn’t as user-friendly as it could be.

Petrol or diesel engines

Ford offers a good choice of engines in the C-Max, kicking off with the 1.0-litre Ecoboost petrol. You might think that sounds like a frighteningly small engine for such a large, practical car, but it’s not won multiple international Engine of the Year awards for nothing - it punches well above its weight, and provided you’re not running the C-Max with all seats and boot space full up to the brim you’re unlikely to want for any more punch.

Of course, if you want a more powerful engine, or an automatic gearbox, you can opt for a 1.5-litre petrol or a 1.5-litre diesel engine instead, both of which should be more than up to the task of pulling a fully laden C-Max.

Practical and spacious inside

Five-seat MPVs can sometimes be little more than tall hatchbacks, but the C-Max has a few more tricks up its sleeve than that. The rear seats fold 40-20-40 rather than the standard 60-40 split you’ll find in most hatches, and even with a sliding rear bench the minimum luggage space is a more than decent 423 litres. With all seats folded it’s a cavernous 1,723 litres. 

Could the Ford C-Max be the best choice for you and your family? Read the full Parkers review to find out.

Ford C-MAX rivals