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Ford Focus C-Max

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15 Reviews

A reliable, practical and inexpensive family car. Fuel consumption is good, and whilst it is a very sensible choice, the Focus C-Max still retains its appealing, modern looks.

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    15 Reviews
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      07.03.2014 19:24

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      A great car. Good economy. Comfortable. Economical

      I bought this car last march brand new due for it's first service next week just short of 10,000 miles on the clock totally trouble free. Not even had to change a bulb.
      Really spacious, got the platinum model which is 1.6 turbo diesel great economy, averages 55-60mpg on the motorway. About 48 urban. This model features a upgraded sterio system. Better seating. Mats. Folding door mirrors. Reverse sensors. All as standard.
      It has also got family in the seating in the back which enables the rear seats to rotate towards each other at 45 degrees which gives added comfort on long journeys.
      We have a dog which the boot space is more than a ample. Vision is really good all round and is a pleasure to drive.
      I can achieve 500 to 600 miles on a full tank of petrol. If I was to fill it up from empty it would cost me approx £65
      All in all this car has been a great buy and wouldn't hesitate to deal with ford again

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      02.02.2014 17:06

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      Great family car

      Bought this car a year ago and at the time it was 6 years old and It is fantastic. I bought it due to me having a baby and needed a car with lots of room. You can easily fit 2 buggys in the boot plus loads of shopping. Even with 2 car seats in the back the middle seat still has plenty of room. There is extra storage under the floor in the back seats, tables on the back of the front seats and a mirror at the front so you can see the children in the back. Only downside is the cost of running this vechile ie Tax and petrol (roughly £60 to fill but normally lasts about 2 weeks aslong as no overly long journeys) In the future I am going to need a 7 seater and would deffinately look at this but in the 7 seater version. I would highly recommend this to anyone starting a family.

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      01.02.2014 19:52
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      Great family Car

      Last year I chose to change my car and decided to have a look at what was on offer with different manufacturers. I've had many cars in the past and have never been loyal to one particular make. It really depended on the offers available.

      Being self employed it can be a bit hit/miss with finance and I've learnt from past experience that it is better to check if finance is available prior to telling the family I'm changing the car. This saves disappointment and embarrassment. I rang Vauxhall and asked them to put me through a finance check and they said they couldn't until I was ready to buy. They were quickly ruled out. Same with Citroen. I then popped onto the Ford site. They pre approved you online (as it should be) and gave you a printout to take to the dealer. I was sorted. So now I could tell the family and go and check out the cars.

      Armed with my certificate I then went down to my local Ford dealer. There were a few cars that I was shown. Fiesta, Focus, CMax, and S Max. With there being 5 of us in the family I quickly dismissed the Fiesta and after test driving the Focus decided I'd like something that bit bigger. That left me with the next car up which was the CMax. Like with most models there are variations depending on the luxury you require. The types available were Zetec starting at £17, 650, Titanium at £19,650 and Titanium X AT £22, 150.

      The Zetec is the most basic model (info below from Ford site)

      ISOFIX Safety seat attachments
      Ford DAB Audio system
      Ford SYNC (includes Emergency Assist, Bluetooth, voice control and audible text messaging)
      USB connectivity
      'Quickclear' heated windscreen
      FordEasyFuel Capless refuelling with misfuel inhibitor
      16" Alloy wheels
      Thatcham Category 1 Alarm
      Air conditioning
      Torque Vectoring Control (TVC)
      Anti lock braking system (ABS)
      Traction control system (TCS)
      Electronic stability system (ESP)
      Front Fog lights
      Power front windows
      Leather trimmed steering wheel

      The Titanium is the middle of the road model (info below from Ford Site)

      Sony DAB Audio system
      Ford SYNC (includes Emergency Assist, Bluetooth, voice control and audible text messaging)
      USB connectivity port
      DEATC air conditioning
      Cruise control with speed limiter
      Power front & rear windows with global open/close
      Auto dimming rear view mirror
      Automatic headlights
      Rain sensing front windscreen wipers
      Hill Start Assist (HSA)
      17" Alloy wheels
      'Ford Power' starter button
      Ambient interior lighting
      Deflation detection system
      Front and rear floor mats

      The Titanium X is the luxury model (info below from Ford Site)

      Panoramic Roof
      Partial Leather seats
      6 way power/heated front seats
      Comfort rear seat system (Not Grand C-MAX)
      Sony DAB Audio system
      Ford SYNC (includes Emergency Assist, Bluetooth, voice control and audible text messaging)
      USB connectivity port
      DEATC air conditioning
      Cruise control with speed limiter
      Power front & rear windows with global open/close
      Auto dimming rear view mirror
      Automatic Bi-Xenon headlights with jet wash
      Rain sensing front windscreen wipers
      Hill Start Assist (HSA)
      17" Alloy wheels
      'Ford Power' starter button
      Ambient interior lighting
      Deflation detection system
      Front and rear floor mats

      I opted the the middle of the range model which as you can see offers many luxuries. I'll take you through some of these. Firstly the radio/cd is rather good. It sets in nicely to the dashboard and has plenty of pre saved channels along with Cd and USB facility to play your IPOD etc. You can even talk to the player to ask what songs you want to play.The Air Conditioning is superb and quickly warms the car up. The heater is also great in removing the condensation from the interior windows.

      One modification I didn't like was the Start Button. Basically you do not use a key to start the car. Providing your key fob is in the car it will start. For somebody who has used a key for 25 years I found it hard to get used to and uneccessary.

      I do enjoy the cruise control though when travelling along the motorway and being able to set the speed to travel. Of course if I need to manually intervene by slowing down this can also be done.

      The dashboard is also built in with bluetooth for hands free phone use which is very convenient.

      The car itself looks very sleek and is very comfy for myself and passengers with seatbelts to all five seats that go over shoulder and not over the lap like some rear seats have.

      One real bug bearer for me was the fact that within the first 6 months I had rather a bad puncture as I hit the kerb and with the high performance tyres one split. You no longer get a spare tyre and I was forced to call family to take me to a nearerst garage to buy a new tyre at the cost of £160.

      The boot in the car isn't as big as some boots I've had in cars but it is still a very reasonable size and would suit most families.

      Would I recommend the CMax. Yes without a doubt. Like with most cars shop around for the best deal. I managed to shave a few thousand off my price.

      Copyright Stebiz 2014 also on ciao.co.uk

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        12.12.2013 14:02
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        Perfect if you buy new, great once you get over the headache of purchasing nearly new!

        I have recently purchased a 2010 Ford C-Max and absolutely love the car.

        Unfortunately I have had several issues with the car but this is possibly more an issue of purchasing a nearly new car from your atypical car salesman.

        Our main reason for purchasing the car is the arrival of our first baby and so the boot of my old Honda Civic wasn't big enough to fit the pram and everything else that comes with children. The boot on the C-Max has no such problem, it's massive!

        It also has extendable sun visors on the rear doors for the kids and has massive doors for easy access.

        My Wife has no issues getting the car seat in and her Grandparents think its even easier to get in than their old Vauxhall Zafira.

        The audio system is very clear, we have a basic model that shouldn't allow you to sync mobile phones but the button is there. We have had a few issues with this as the system trys to sync itself with a phone occassionally but can't and this stops the Radio and CD from working.

        The 1.8 diesel does have enough poke but it does feel like it could do with a six speed gearbox rather than five.

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        10.08.2013 13:05

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        We love this car

        We Purchased a Ford Focus C-max 4 years ago (second hand- 6 years old at time of purchase) and to honest have never looked back!

        The car runs smoothly, has never let us down and is extremely economical.

        We have the 1600cc petrol model in metallic silver and it has provided us with 4 years years of hassle free motoring. It has sailed through every MOT.

        With it being a ford I find it easy to work on with only a little knowlege of cars. I have changed oil filter, airfilter, break pads, discs and lamps myself with ease.

        The in car audio system that comes as standard is to a very high specification. CD player and radio and built in speakers that sound very full and not all 'tinny' like some cars.

        The foot well in the rear of the car has a small storage compartment built into the floorl that is very handy for trips where storage is key.

        As a family with 2 children this car meets all of our requirements with great boot space and also decent legroom in the front for the grown ups.

        The digital display on the dashboard is simple but attractive. It displays the radio frequency, temperatire and miles left to next re- fuel required.

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        01.01.2013 13:22
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        A good all round family car that seems very reliable.

        I've had my 2004 C-Max for around 18 months now. I have the 1.8l 16v zetec engine and find that this is very heavy on fuel. It's our family car for my wife, 2 children and I and as you can imagine, budget is everything! Having a car so thirsty for fuel means we are continually filling up.

        That said, the car itself is very good. The engine has a good amount of power to it which is helpful as we live in a place that seems to be dominated by very large hills!! Gear changes seem nice and smooth and I quite like the position of the gear stick, around half way up the centre console.

        Maintenance costs so far have seemed relatively low. Usually just wear and tear items such as tyres or exhaust rubbers. Having a large engine does mean that it sits in a higher road tax band, currently around £200/year.

        The boot is very big, ideal for a family and we manage to fit all of our baby daughter's gear in there, such as pram, changing bag etc. We have even managed to use the boot to move furniture before now!

        The interior is pretty solid although is made from flimsy plastic and looks cheap in some areas. This wasn't really important to us as it's our family car and we fully expect it to be messed up on a regular basis due to having two young children.

        All in all, a decent and well built car. Definitely no good if you're wanting to save money on fuel though, but for us it serves it's purpose as a good all round family car.

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          21.05.2012 16:10
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          Good overall and no major problems

          We have owned a 2007 plate Ford Focus C-Max for about 18 months and overall it is a great car. We have the Style 1.8l petrol engine and boy is it thirsty. I mainly do short journeys and it feels like I am constantly having to fill up the tank. I would seriously consider a Diesel option next time.

          We bought the car because we were expecting a baby and it seemed to be a good family vehicle. However when we came to want to fit an isofix base for our baby car seat we had to cut into the fabric of the back seat in order to fit it. Not helpful. Ford would have done this for us but at a cost of around £70.

          That said, the C-Max is a comfortable vehicle with a spacious and pleasant (albeit standard Ford plastic) interior. It is a good driving position, being slightly higher that a standard car and feels more like a people carrier. There is plenty of boot space for luggage/the dog and you can comfortably fit three in the back. There are useful storage spaces under the rear footwells and lift up trays on the back of the front seats.

          Our model has electric windows to the front and manual in the rear. I would have preferred lockable electric windows in the back and expect these are available in higher spec models. A handy extra is the built-in pull up window shades on the back windows which is great if you have a little one in the back.

          Our model does not come with a spare wheel but has a contraption which involves filling your flat tyre with
          some kind of resin. We have yet to try this but I am not convinced.

          The C-Max is a reliable and solid car. It is a comfortable ride in the front and the back and in my opinion is a pleasure to drive. I would recommend this car to others and apart from the above comments I am generally positive about its performance. I guess if I didn't trust the car I wouldn't put my baby girl in the back of it.

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            12.05.2011 17:59
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            All in all, a very nice family car, with an enjoyable ride and no complaints really

            I have owned a Ford C-max for around 5-6 years now, and it has been a real step up from the old ford mondeo we previously owned.

            The Ride height in the car is well suited for long car journeys rather than shorter ones as it lets you take a little bit of a step back so that although you don't feel as connected to the vehicle, you can relax and enjoy the comfortable interior and seating. The same can be said of the diesel engine though, for shorter journeys it does tend to drink like a thirsty camel, however for those long trips abroad and to the family who just happen to live over 60 miles away, it does better, averaging around 70 miles to the gallon.

            One horrible disadvantage I must state though, is the handbrake is on the wrong side, it is offset to the left as the original model was designed for Europe rather than the UK (discount this if you drive on the right), this can get a bit of getting used to.

            Other than that, the car has ample boot space for all your luggage, comes with heated seats and parking sensors on the slightly more expensive versions and a sun roof if you want it (costs a bit more though).

            All in all, a very nice family car, with an enjoyable ride and no complaints really.

            Mr Toxiic

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              25.01.2011 15:47
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              not the best ford by far

              I've had a few people carriers and a few larger hatchbacks and to be honest my 2000 mondeo was the best yet. When we had our 3rd son we bought the C max thinking we'd get great fuel economy as reviewed, we'd get loads of room and an outstanding family car. What we bought 2 years ago was the C max which absolutely guzzles the diesel, is a poor drive around town, great drive on the motorway, roomy but no concert hall and finally a long list of receipts for repair work done to things like the electrics, fuel system and the suspension. We did buy it on a certain bidding e site but never the less we werent happy. We kept it for about 6 months and went back to the mondeo but a 2005 model estate which to be honest is a marked improvement. Come on Ford, get your act together and bring back the good old motors.

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                27.11.2010 11:46

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                I bought this as a slightly smaller version of a people carrier, and what a nightmare its been. Gobbles up the diesel like it's drinking water (it is better on long distances). We have had the car two and half years and have spent a fortune on it. It had very low mileage and only one owner so was in good condition. In the last two years we have had to replace the alternator, rear and front break pads and discs, new clutch and fly wheel (costing £1,000) as the Ghia is more expensive, new air conditioning unit as well as still servicing it and MOTs. All this with less than 50,000 miles on the clock. The car is now juddering when accelerating and the fuses are making funny clicking noises!? First Ford and the last!!

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                02.07.2010 20:02
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                An excellent reliable car

                The ford focus C-max has been our car for about 5 years now and has taken us all over the country and even a famous trip to Southern France. We have always until buying the recent Vauxhall Costa bought fords and particularly ford fiestas. However, when our then ford fiesta gave up the ghost it was time to buy a new car, now at the time we had a large red setter (we still do) and wanted a car in which we could convert the boot into a dog cage thing which people do. This never happened and there is a very good reason in that we started to have children, fortunately the C-max is the perfect people carrier.

                The ford focus c-max we drive is a petrol powered car, it is a five door hatchback and ours is a silver one. We bought ours with 9000 miles on the clock and now we are approaching 80000 so far except for new tires and general servicing it's never had any serious problems.

                The price

                we bought ours when it was 9 months old and cost about £11000, new they cost about £17000. That's a reasonable price for a five door hatchback and has been a faithful servant for the last 5 years.

                Handling

                Any people carrier is of course built for the purpose of getting lots of people from one place to another in relative comfort, high performance handling, acceleration and driver enjoyment are not perhaps number one on the priority list. Saying that though for a big car, it is surprisingly responsive when being driven and cruises along very happily at 80 miles an hour. The 1.6 litre engine version we have has a decent range of speeds and responds well to being prompted for that quick getaway.

                Comfort

                Well its spacious I think you can say for certain, bucket seats for the driver and front passenger, ample leg room in the back and a spacious boot. The back seats easily take child seats, dogs sprawled on the back and the legs of my six foot four inch dad. He never complained so it must have loads of leg room.

                Driving

                This is a five speed gear box with a reverse as well of course, the gear box does take a little getting used to as its slightly higher than other car models. But this design is a plus after a while because it gives plenty of clearance for the hand brake. The steering wheel is large and responsive and on it are means to change the radio and CD but as this is a 2004 model then the application of mp3 players is a little difficult. The wheel also has the indicator and windscreen wipers behind it and the lights are on the right hand side of the driving position just above the right knee area.

                Security

                The car has central locking, and can be locked once in the car by pressing a little button behind the automatic window openers.

                Any quibbles

                We did have a problem with the driver's side window which in winter refused to come back up fully when pressing the automatic window button, as this model doesn't have any manual way of shutting the window it meant we had to leave the car open very slightly in out garage for a couple of nights. The garage fixed it very easily though.

                The only other problem was that the water for the windows came out the wrong way around so when you squirted for the front windows, water would come out of the back and vice versa. This doesn't sound like a huge issue except when you consider that the wipers on cars is preset to come on when you put on the water squirter so it meant the wrong wiper was on with the wrong window. This was and is a slight annoyance and nothing more, just means we have to start the wipers manually when we use the water to clear the windows.

                Entertainment

                As I said our car is pre-mp3, there is a CD player, multi station radio player and nothing else. The reception for the radio is excellent and CD's play with decent clarity.

                Fuel Economy

                Probably not the car for fuel economy as it does about 320 miles to a full 50 litre tank so you get about 6/7 miles per litre and if you feel the need work it out in gallons but as this is 2010 I've no idea how many litres there are in a gallon. I'll guess it does about 40-45 mpg.

                Buy again?

                Yes, but see no reason to trade in this model for a newer version at the moment. Seriously touching wood after that comment.

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                  09.06.2010 22:41
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                  I'd recommend if it is covered by a warranty

                  I own a 55 reg 1.6 LX (115ps) 5 door, which is the 111bhp version rather than the normal 98bhp 1.6 version. I got it cheap from an auction because it seems no one wants these cars. However I'm guessing it will have zero resale value.

                  I get 31 miles to the gallon round town and 33 miles to the gallon on longer runs, which seems to be about the same as other owners so it is not great in the fuel efficiency department. The emissions are also not good and so you'll end up paying a fair amount in road tax too. A few reviews have said that power is lacking, but I have never found this even with 4 people and a boot full. The car also has a 4 star NCAP safety rating which I consider very important.

                  Mine has developed a fault with the power steering pump, apparently this is a common fault with the cars. It wouldn't be so bad just under the bonnet the layout of everything is a complete nightmare where you can't get access to anything. To replace this you need to take the front of the car off, ridiculous. Although this would have been covered by an extended warranty I didn't take one out, and so ended up with a cost of £700 to replace such a small thing. Apparently there are other common faults such as the with the electronics.

                  The ride is very comfortable and smooth, and the handling of the car is great. The higher seating position is great, especially if you have trouble getting in and out of vehicles and also gives you good visibility. Although one point on visibility is that one of the struts of the roof is very thick and is positioned exactly where you need to look when approaching roundabouts.

                  Inside the car the rear seats fold down in a few ways or can be easily removed. The boot is fairly large anyway. The CD player and speakers are fine. Fully adjustable seat and steering column which allows good comfort while driving.

                  Overall I really like the car, but I really worry about the reliability of it, and then the subsequent cost of getting it repaired. If you can get one still covered by a warranty then I'd recommend it. But my next car I'll be looking to buy something more fuel efficient and reliable.

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                  17.05.2010 18:43
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                  Overall a nice family car for space but could do with some driving comfort

                  I currently own a 54 plate Ford Focus C Max, and to be honest yes it is a good car for people especially when you have kids... it is quite spacious, the boot is a pretty good size, which for me is great because I need room for a buggy and also shopping! I also like the fact that I am seated a little higher than a normal car, and I like the gear stick being a little higher.

                  Saying all that I do have to say that I feel like it can be hard work to drive sometimes, unless that is just me being fussy, but I feel the sterring can sometimes feel a little heavy, and the brakes seem to only register when pushed right down to the floor. The only thing that really annoys me, and makes me feel quite uneasy at times is that it is not that great in the icy weather or the wet conditions... it does tend to slide about a bit, I don't know whether this is because maybe buying really expensive tyres would be the best but, however, I am happy with the car overall, and I know what it feels like to drive and I know what to expect in weather conditions.... one thing I dont get is... it is classed as an MPV.... which I always thought stood for Muti-Person/passenger Vehicle... so I thought maybe it had extra seating... but I was wrong, as it does only have 5 seats, just like the car... I am hoping that I can get maybe a Ford Galaxy or Vauxhall Vectra next, so I can take my family out, and have more room for those extra passengers!

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                  11.09.2009 00:55
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                  Reviews good - my experience bad!

                  I purchased a 05 plate C-max in early 2006. It replaced a W reg Focus Estate TD. It was 9 month old and bought for £8000 in a cut price dealer - onl 7000 miles on the clock. On the plus side when i PX'd it 15 months later, with 24000 miles on the clock and having missed its major service - i was given £7500 - Cant complain there!

                  I bought it wanting to go back to a small MPV and having read fantastic reviews about the build quality and drive.

                  Well build quality -couldnt fault it,felt considerably more solid than many cars ive owned, and had a good solid weight to it - in all the time/miles i owned it i had no complainsts on that front!

                  However the way it drove for me was a very different kettle of fish!

                  I found the steering to be heavy and unresponsive, the brakes never felt quite as they should (did have them checked, all ok apparently), and the overall feel just wasnt very nice i though - the way it felt n wet and icy roads did not install confidence in me atall!

                  However i know others that own them and love the - maybe its personal taste, but i wouldnt have another if it was given to me! My previous focus estate a much nicer car!

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                  13.03.2009 16:14
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                  A great family car without that 'family van' look

                  I have always driven small cars and when expecting my second child I knew my little Clio was not going to survive or handle the future. My other half had previously bought a car at a city used car dealership and told me that they were really good and friendly. The two cars I have had in the past were bought with the help of my father and now I was on my own. Silly but true I hadn't a clue what to do or what I needed to look for. It took me a good couple of months before I had put pen to paper and the list of things I needed from a car was made. I had to be quite precise as I knew that once I had purchased a car that would be it for the next lord knows how many years. I have to say whenever I looked at the MPV or family cars my heart dropped and I think I might have even died a little inside! I'm not sure if it's just me but the thought of being a 'soccer mum' didn't appeal to me.

                  On a trip to my local farmers market I passed a Ford dealership and saw in the forecourt a car that seemed very nice. I pulled into the dealership to have a closer inspection. I got the key off of one of the staff members who told me it was a model called the Focus C-Max. I jumped into the car to see what it had to offer. This particular one was second-hand and had a bit of damage to it but I was able to see what features this model could offer me. I sat first in the driver seat. My other half has a Ford Focus and as the C-Max is a Focus on steroids it felt very similar. The dash wasn't too in your face as many these days can be. After spending a few minutes getting a feel for the auto I allowed my son to jump in the back to give me his opinion. The back middle seat folds down to make a table between the two side seats and thus he was sold.

                  The next weekend I made my way to the big used car centre as the internet site showed that they had a good number of C-Max cars to have a look at. This was my chance to really see if this was the car for me. I was armed with my son, other half and a list of must-haves.

                  Firstly the car had to be in my price range. The ones I was looking at were 2004-2006 models and between £5,000 and £7,000. The maximum my budget would allow was £6, 200.

                  I walked around for a bit looking at what the cars themselves to see what kind of shape they were in as they were of course second-hand. Looking at price and general exterior looks my search was narrowed down to three cars. One was a diesel and the other two petrol. Diesels provide eye-catching mpg (miles per gallon) figures, but all models offer good economy. Eco-conscious buyers should consider the 90bhp 1.6-litre diesel, which is one of the greenest models in the range emitting 119g/km of CO2 (making it cheap to tax) and returning 60mpg. Now I'm not especially 'green' but I can handle cheap tax! I already knew from my other half that Ford servicing was reasonable and we have a big servicing centre near our house so quite convenient.

                  Going back to my car search. I have narrowed my search to three C-Max's. I got all the keys to have a better look. The first one I sat in had quite a few smoke related burns to the seats so that one was written off my list, the next had a very odd looking hand brake which Ford have since stopped making but I have to say it did put me off buying that one. Now onto the third one which was soon to be the car that comes home two days later.

                  Called a MAV (Multi Activity Vehicle) and not an MPV as it is not as big. The car looks very much like the Focus it was modelled off of. Very slick, stylish lines with an elegant one-piece bumper adding to its visual appeal. The rear has a subtle spoiler added just above the rear window which I thought was a cute extra that gave it a bit of a sporty feel.

                  The steering wheel is leather with silver accents. Easily adjustable to many heights so good for any driving position. Very good for us as I'm a shorty and my other half is over 6 foot. This car is higher off the ground and compared to my previous cars it was easy to get in and out of. Especially as by this time I was 7 months pregnant and getting in and out of any type of chair was causing issues. You can see that there has been real attention to detail. On the dash there is an extra storage space for maps and such. The glove box is spacious and even has a little holder built in for a pen which I can't even tell you how good that is for me.

                  Performance ... To be honest I am not overly knowledgeable about cars but from my point of view as a driver I have no complaints about this cars performance. Shortly after buying it we made a family trip to Cornwall for a wedding and the car drove like a dream. I had been told that the 1.6 litre models when filled up and made heavier can struggled on hills and such but I didn't notice it struggle any more then any other car I have driven. I don't know how you measure a good turning circle but compared to my last car the kerb-to-kerb is really good!

                  One concern I had was being able to drive a car that was not big but compared to my previous cars huge. I was afraid of not knowing how wide the car was and if I'd be able to park. It did take me a few days to get the hang of the width of the car but I think that is normal with any new car. As for parking I haven't had any trouble (so far, touch wood). The model I got has rear parking sensors which I have to admit are so handy. I can forget everything I learnt about parking as the car now tells me what to do. There are a number of back roads where I live and the C-Max seems to glide over the rough terrain. My son used to grip the door on these roads! When on the motorway the engine is relatively quiet and wind noise is minimal.

                  Mine has the heated front windscreen which rocks! After such a cold winter it has really been put to use. It only takes a couple of minutes just like the rear defrost. Shaves a few minutes off my morning rush to get the kid to school. When the heating is set to blow on the front windscreen it has two vents that face the side windows which is good but it takes a little too long to do its magic. In other cars to clear the window a bit I would wind the window down and then back up again but for some reason when you do that on this car it makes no difference. Almost as if the window doesn't touch anything on the way down or up.

                  As mentioned before we took a trip to Cornwall just after buying the car. The seats themselves were really comfy. Usually my back is in knots by the halfway stop for food but I was ok this time, nice change.

                  Practicality ... The big thing people are saying is that there is no seven seat option. If you need seven seats then this isn't the car for you (Try the S-Max). The C-Max however I found brilliant. I have a larger then normal buggy and it fits in the boot easily and along with it I can fit a weeks food shopping for four people and yet still have some room left. On our trip to Cornwall almost everything fit into the boot so my son didn't have anything balanced on him this time.

                  Equipment ... There are a few different looks to the interior and it will mostly depend on which model C-Max you choose. There is Studio, LX, Style, Zetec, Titanium and Ghia. I have the Zetec (05) and the interior is black and charcoal. All models get driver's, passenger's, and side curtain airbags, Isofix child seat anchors, an immobiliser, remote central locking, electric windows, height adjustable steering wheel and a heated rear window.

                  I have two different child car seats; A 0+/0 and a booster for a 5 year old. The booster easily fits into any car so no problem there. The other car seat is a little trickier. I got the car seat that fits onto my Graco Quattro buggy. It is pretty standard in size. I went to a local children's store and purchased one of those car seat bases so that I wouldn't have to strap the baby seat in every journey. It makes life so much easier when you can just pop the car seat onto the base, click it into place and go. My only problem arose when I was having the base fitted to the car. Just below your feet in the back of the car are two under floor storage areas. Very handy for putting handheld games machines out of site but the car seat base has a leg that must be fixed to a main bit of floor. My other half and I thought I wasn't going to be able to use it and the children's store was saying it "wasn't advisable". We fit it into place anyway to see what it would be like and the leg of the base actually doesn't sit on top of the floor storage top. Hooray! I was so happy. I had been thinking of ways to fill that storage area but now I can use it and have the base in place which is brilliant.

                  There are a few extras that mine has which have come in handy. As previously mentioned there is the heated front window which I love, fog lights, a 12v socket in the boot (we used it to power a Halfords mini food fridge on our trip), full size spare tyre, alloys, parking sensors and detachable towbar. There are a number of radios available for all models. I have the basic CD one which is perfect. I don't need anything more. For reference if you were to replace the radio the space is called a double DIN as it is large. Sony is one of the companies that make radios to fit.

                  The cup holders are in a middle of the two front seats and is a good shape to hold most things. The only things that don't sit properly are cola bottles. They stay put, but not brilliantly. To solve this they fit perfectly in the side of the door, problem solved. To add I have also found that the cup holder with hold Tommee Tippee and Avent baby bottles perfectly. There is also a little holder (not for cups) just under the gear stick which is perfect for keeping chargers and hair clips ... but it also a perfect fit for a grocery store sanwich! I was on a road trip not long ago and found that the triangle shaped sani packets fits there and is in easy reach to have a bite and put it back as you're driving.

                  The bonnet locks into place using the key which gives me something less to worry about as the bonnet of my Clio flew up into the front window on the motorway! Just another thing that went wrong with that car.

                  Safety ... A four-star Euro NCAP crash test rating can't be a bad thing! Standard is the dual front airbags and ABS (Anti-Lock Braking System) and some of the models also have the side impact airbags. For security parts are marked and windows etched with codes to be easily identified as belonging to the car and on some models a standard Ford alarm is available.

                  Running costs & Green credentials ...
                  "Reports to parkers.co.uk about reliability and build quality are mostly positive. The previous generation Focus hatchback won a German reliability survey and the hatchback, estate and saloon versions of both the first and second generation Focus models have proved very durable." - www.Parkers.co.uk

                  Estimated fuel cost for 10,000 miles/year:
                  £900 to £1575

                  It costs me £5 a tank less to fill this car up then it did to fill my old Clio up. I'm never going to argue with that!

                  Disadvantages ... This first one won't bother most people but the lovely people at Haynes who advise me how to change lights, washer fluid and various other things have not yet made a manual for this car. I always like having a book like this in the boot just in case I need it and also so that I can perform the little car check-ups every so often. I have sent an e-mail to the company and apparently they are working on one at the moment so hopefully not long now before they publish it. As mentioned before the car seat base posed a slight issue at first.

                  New price range: £14,550 - £22,040
                  Used price range: £2,496 - £13, 393

                  (c) oioiyou 2009

                  2011 update: There's been a few occasions when having a bigger car with boot seats would have come in handy but as for my day to day it's a perfect size. With two young children and a partner who finds in impossible to not spill thigns i should have realized that the interior wouldn't hold up. i keep thinking about looking into having the seats recovered but it's probably a waste of money. I found quite a good cleaning product so I'll just try and stay on top of it. I went to Halfords and have a seat cover on the back seats so the kids don't ruin anything more.

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