I bought my Ford Galaxy 2.3 Ghia 9 years ago. It had only had 1 owner and was 2 years old when I bought it. As I have a lot of children, I needed a large car so this 7 seater was an excellent thing to own. I bought it from Carcraft it was priced at just over £18.000 but with H.P I think it came to around £22.000 which seems quite a bit, and I also paid £2000 for a guarantee/warranty which I would NOT recommend anybody buying as it was not worth the paper it was written on.
However on the plus side, this car has been a workhorse. The high seats give for a comfortable drive and when folded down give a little"tray" compartment for the children to eat their dinner from. You can fold the seats down or take them out if you need the empty space to put furniture in, with it being a people carrier it has lots of room to move those bits of furniture that you need to get from A to B. I was able to bring a double bed, no problem 53 miles. I also moved furniture for a friend, and it accomodated a washing machine, a tumble drier, and a fridge freezer plus all other items without a problem. The passenger doors are wide too, so easy access. With it being 7 seats, the boot is only small, but when the back two seats are dropped, there is ample room, it also has a boot shelf cover.
The engine size is 2.3 so its a fast engine, and its a petrol car, so I find it seems to run away with the miles on short journeys sadly with all the stopping and starting, but on motorways it is very economical. The electrics are underneath the front seats, which can be a bit of a pain as the children in the back can spill things and it can get under the front seats and into the little well. The carpet under the seats tends to move also,as it is only on by small black studs, leaving the electric loom open.
Another problem I found with this car is the cup holders. They are ABOVE the radio and if you have been to McDonalds and have put fizzy drinks there, it tends to seep through, and down into the radio and heater compartment, I have had to have two heaters put in, and also a new radio.
The car has air conditioning which is really useful for the summer, especially with small children, but not a lot of people know that the air conditioning uses your PETROL and is only efficient when the windows are CLOSED, so I would only use it when really needed. The very back windows open sideways to about 4 inches approximately, which is really good as small children cant climb out, or throw things out. I had a child with neuro problems and used to sit her in the back where she can do no harm to herself or anybody else. The windows are also slightly tinted, which helps keep the sun off the childrens faces. All the windows and doors can be safely locked from the drivers door, and there are child locks also. When you get out of the car and realise the children have left some windows open, all you have to do is put your key in the lock and turn and hold in the locking position and the windows will automatically close. There is also a little port at the back of the car, for plugging in lighters or such, however I bought a box from Maplin, which converts a household plug to fit into this port, so we could take a small fridge and plug it in on long journeys to keep drinks cold. Also it could accomodate the dvd players which we had in the seats at the back for the children to each watch their own, (with the ear phones in) sheer bliss aaaaaaaaahh.
Good car to be used for towing also.
This is a brilliant car and I really dont want to part with it, however, its getting old now and Im finding the parts for it are getting very expensive, but I would buy another.
I'll put this in context to begin with. This car is an addition to my family, acting as a pseudo camper van for days out, due to its swivelling front seats and plenty of space and cubby holes. It also doubles as a tow car for our caravan.
Budget dictated that this car had to be a Ford Galaxy. That and Renault Espaces not really being to my taste (no offence intended to satisfied Espace owners). After a short search which revealed a lot of tired, high mileage examples, I stumbled across ours, a 2002 Ghia with 70,000 warranted mileage, two previous owners and a full service history. Cost? Just under £4,000. Good ones are out there if you shop around a bit. And remember, if it's a petrol, it's extremely unlikely to have ever been used as a taxi!
I have to admit I like this car - a lot. It's a Ghia so it's loaded with kit, including air con, alloy wheels, cruise control, computer, CD interchanger, and of course the seven seats. I do feel quite posh when I'm driving it (probably slightly sad but I don't care).
Mine is a petrol engine model. I'm not going to go into the petrol or diesel argument - ultimately this is down to personal choice. But if you do go for a petrol make sure you go for a 2.3. The engine is a cracker! I've driven a lot of cars over the years and I can honestly say I can't believe a four cylinder engine could be so smooth. It's a delight, with a good spread of torque across the rev range - handy for towing. Also it has chain driven camshafts, so no expensive cam belt changes!
Fuel consumption? It's not the lightest in the world, but the engine is lugging quite a big car around. However with sensible driving you should be able to average the low 30s per gallon. It does dip a bit around town, though. A petrol engine in a car of this size is never going to be as fuel efficient as a diesel and I think you just have to accept that. If fuel consumption is the most important thing for you, go for a diesel.
To drive, it's an absolute peach. Especially on motorways. The high driving postion plus the smooth petrol engine makes for a very relaxed cruise. I've never done this myself (and I never will) but you do get the feeling this car would cruise comfortably at 100 mph all day if asked to do so - but you'd probably need to go to Germany to do that.
Noting's gone wrong with mine so far and it's just been serviced/MOT'd with no trouble. Thankfully Fords are quite cheap to fix and run expecially if you use a trusted independent garage. Expect to pay around £160 for a fuill service on the 2.3 which is pretty good actually. You shouldn't find the insurance too salty either as these aren't really classed as high risk vehicles.
I think I've got quite a good one but I know Galaxys have their weak points. The biggest one is the air con. If you buy one secondhand you must check that this works and blows nice and cold, otherwise you could be setting yourself up for frequent and expensive regasses.
Practically this car is great. It has seven seats, although as we have two kids, we never use the back two seats. The one disadvantage is that you have to take the seats out if you want the space and store them somewhere, and they are very heavy to lift in and out. But if you can find the space to store them, then this shouldn't be a big deal.
So to sum up, Series 2 Galaxys are extremely good value for money if you can find a good one. As the title of this review suggests, I can't believe I've got as much as I have for the money- and that engine!!! Happy hunting.