The Tourneo Custom is claimed to offer a much more refined experience than any previous equivalents
- Refined and comfortable
- Good handling
- Low running costs
- Modern styling and optional equipment
- High specification versions are expensive
- Fuel filler flap looks easily damaged
- Inaccessible oil filler cap
The Ford Tourneo Custom is the passenger version of the Transit Custom. It’s a flexible and capable people carrier that’s aimed at both business and private buyers alike. The Tourneo Custom features a modern design both inside and out, and a range of advanced options and technology. This makes it a more attractive proposition than some of its more established rivals, which bear more in common with the commercial vehicles on which they are based. Both eight- and nine-seat versions of the Ford are on offer, as well as short and long wheelbase models. Under the bonnet lies an economical 2.2-litre diesel engine and the Tourneo Custom is claimed to offer a much more refined experience than any previous equivalents. “The Tourneo Custom brings car-like style and sophistication to the people-mover segment,” said Ulf Roentgen, Interior Design Manager, Ford of Europe. Does the Ford have what it takes to beat rivals like the Volkswagen Transporter Shuttle or Fiat Scudo Passenger Transport? Find out in the full Parkers Ford Tourneo Custom review.
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The Tourneo Custom drives impressively well for a vehicle of its class and size. It’s powered by a 2.2-litre Duratorq TDCi engine that delivers plenty of pulling power, allowing the Ford to make swift progress even when fully loaded. The 2.2-litre diesel is available in 99bhp, 123bhp and 153bhp outputs and all versions deliver up to and over 310Nm of pulling power. The engines are relatively refined and economical too, although when worked hard they can be noisy. All models are claimed to average over 43mpg. The engine delivers its power to the front wheels through a precise six-speed manual gearbox. An effective stop-start system is fitted as standard which helps reduce fuel consumption, particularly in heavy traffic. Driving the Tourneo Custom is a satisfying and stress-free experience as it has good handling and a smooth ride. The controls are well weighted and precise, the brakes strong and the engines flexible. Operators regularly carrying lots of passengers would be best advised to opt for the more powerful engines, however, as they will be less hard-worked and potentially more economical as a result. One thing that may also prove useful to some is the fact that the Tourneo Custom is less than two metres high, meaning it shouldn’t have too many issues with the majority of car parks. This applies even if the roof rack system is fitted, although it will need to be empty and lowered when required.
Ford is keen to stress the high interior quality and comfort levels of the new Tourneo Custom and, credit where it’s due, the people mover does very well in both respects. If you’ve driven a Focus or Mondeo recently then you’ll feel right at home in the Tourneo Custom as the dash is very similar. This makes the Ford feel a lot more upmarket inside compared to its rivals and the cabin is certainly a pleasant place to be. The vast majority of materials used in the interior feel durable, making the Ford ideal for those who intend to use their vehicles for transporting passengers frequently. Comfort levels for the driver are high thanks to a quiet cabin, supportive seating and a range of adjustments – including a steering wheel that adjusts for rise and reach. Visibility is also acceptable, while parking the Tourneo Custom is made easy thanks to large rear view mirrors. Further reducing driver workload is a good range of standard equipment and a host of modern options like Lane Keeping Alert. Myriad storage points are dotted around, including a useful phone holder just in front of the gear shift. Eight- and nine-seat versions of the Tourneo Custom are available and passengers benefit from comfortable seats, lots of head room, substantial leg room and a well-trimmed cabin. A full leather interior option is available for those who want an even more upmarket finish to their Ford Tourneo Custom. Other features, like window blinds integrated into the doors, are available.
Owners will be pleased to find that Ford Tourneo Custom running costs aren’t excessive. Ford’s commercial vehicles have always been competitive when it comes to costs and the Tourneo Custom looks like it will be no exception. It comes with a three year/100,000 mile warranty which should shield owners and operators from any unexpected expenditure. Servicing is every two years or 30,000 miles, which means minimum downtime for busy companies, and Ford parts and servicing costs are usually inexpensive as well. Ford’s Tourneo Custom also gets a 12 year anti-corrosion warranty. Additionally, all versions of the Tourneo are powered by a 2.2-litre diesel engine which is claimed to average 43.5mpg, helping keep fuel costs low. “We have combined car-like levels of performance, comfort and specification with enhanced practicality and reduced running costs,” said Barry Gale, chief engineer, Ford of Europe. “This stylish vehicle with genuine ability will enhance Ford’s reputation for long-term durability and value.”
Tourneo Custom reliability should be very good, as the Transit Custom on which it is based has received extensive development and testing. As a result Tourneo Custom buyers should have little to worry about on the durability front. Ford’s passenger and commercial vehicles have a good history with regards to reliability and the new Custom range should be no exception. Each Tourneo Custom comes with a three year/100,000 mile warranty so, even if there is a problem early on, it will most likely be covered by the manufacturer’s warranty. Ford also has a substantial dealer network so if your Ford does have an issue or mechanical failure then you won’t have to travel far to get it inspected. In fact we only have a few minor reservations about the Tourneo Custom. Firstly, the fuel filler flap appears easily damaged and, secondly, the oil filler cap in the engine bay is hard to reach which could lead to substantial oil spills.
Ford Tourneo Custom safety is very good. It has a strong structure and a wide range of safety systems to protect occupants. Over 40% of its body is made from high-strength or ultra-high-strength steels, making the Tourneo Custom both strong and light. The Ford has also been developed to take into account Euro NCAP crash testing protocols for pedestrian protection. Standard safety equipment includes driver and passenger front and seat-mounted side airbags, curtain airbags for front seat passengers, a specially designed steering column that’s aimed at reducing impact damage, electronic stability control, active yaw control, roll over mitigation, hydraulic brake assist, hill start assist and anti-lock brakes. All the seats in the Tourneo Custom get integral three-point seat belts, while ISOFix child seat fixing points are available on the two inner seats on the second row and on the centre seat in the third row. The ISOFix points also include top tether mounts for extra security. The Ford Tourneo Custom is also a secure vehicle thanks to numerous security features including a choice of two alarm systems and remote central locking.