Party bus

Re­port 3 Ford Tour­neo

Top Gear (UK) - - GARAGE - ANDY FRANKLIN

£40,480 OTR/£40,480 as tested

The above pic­ture pretty much sums up my en­joy­ment of this car. This month I’ve stretched the Tour­neo’s legs and done a 1,000-mile round trip to France and back, where it’s proved to me run­ning a van can be so ver­sa­tile. It man­aged to be a taxi to trans­port all of my friends who had come over, ei­ther for an air­port run or a group out­ing to a kart track. It picked up some lo­cal beer for the French vil­lage fete and did ster­ling ser­vice be­ing a fam­ily car.

But a large ve­hi­cle has a knock-on ef­fect when trav­el­ling. It’s not like run­ning an av­er­age car. You need to pay for a big­ger space in the tun­nel (+£50) or on the ferry, your break­down cover is larger, jour­ney times are slower and you need to remember you are over 2m high and very long. There’s a huge blindspot and the small ex­tra mir­ror to help this can of­ten be missed. If I hadn’t needed all the seats for my trip, I prob­a­bly would have taken a few out. Hav­ing all the seats in re­duces the lug­gage space and makes pack­ing the car a Tetris chal­lenge. With nine seats, the boot is nar­row and tall, and things in there fall out when you open it. This means we had to use the space be­tween the seats to house stuff.

The ac­tual drive down was more plea­sur­able than I was ex­pect­ing, apart from the large side winds dur­ing a storm. Strangely, I no­ticed that in the UK, the van pulled to the left a tad, and in France to the right... which must just be a char­ac­ter­is­tic of Ford’s torque-steer han­dling.

Would I have wanted any other car? Not a chance. I might have found peak lifer...

With all the seats in place, pack­ing is a bit of a chal­lenge

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