First drive: Ford Mondeo 1.6 EcoBoost and 1.6 TDCi

The trend of offering smaller but more powerful engines is continuing at Ford with the introduction of 1.6-litre diesel and petrol engines with auto-start-stop as standard, for its fleet and family favourite, the Mondeo.

The new 1.6-litre 113bhp TDCi diesel boasts a low 114g/km CO2 figure, which is a 30 per cent reduction over the top-selling 138bhp 2.0-litre TDCi.

If that wasn't enough to give this new Mondeo a second look, it's also the most frugal model in the range, with a 65.6mpg average figure. Whilst the engine may be small, there's no need to cut back on specifications, as this engine is available on all models except the Titanium X Sport.

Like the sound of the 158bhp EcoBoost petrol version more? Well, it's the same engine that really impressed us recently in the Focus. In this installation, it has 13bhp more than the bigger 145bhp 2.0-litre petro enginel and is cleaner and more economical, with an average fuel consumption of 41.5mpg (up from 35.8mpg in the 2.0-litre) and emissions of 158g/km of CO2 (down from 189g/km).

So what are they both like to drive? Well, one major worry I had was whether such small engines would work with the extra weight of the Mondeo's bigger body. I shouldn't have worried, as I had the chance to drive both of these engines on a variety of roads and both gave an eager, refined performance.

Top speed for the 1.6 TDCi diesel is 118mph compared to 134mph for the EcoBoost petrol. The latter comes top again for acceleration, taking just 9.3 seconds compared to 11.9 seconds to 62mph for the diesel.

The Mondeo still remains the driver's choice of this class with responsive handling, direct steering and they are both mated to crisp six-speed manual gearboxes.

In my view, Mondeo man has never had it so good, as these new engines are the pick of the range. In fact, the only reason I can see to choose the diesel over the petrol, is the reduced fuel consumption.

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