Shed of the Week: Ford Mondeo 2.5 Ghia X

What's more important in a used car -ย the amount of mileage, or the way in which its mileage has been accumulated?

Take this week's Shed, a Ford Mondeo 2.5 Ghia X. The MOT history tells us that in the first four years of that life it only managed 12,400 miles, and that the mileage continued to build at the same careful rate of 3-4,000 miles a year from that point on.

The current mileage of 53,000 and the first owner's name still being on the V5 would suggest a loving and pampered existence. Why, then, does it look quite so scabby in places? If you didn't know different you'd guess at 153,000 miles rather than 53,000.

Older motorists brought up on Austin Sevens and the like believe that driving carefully and not very often is a good way to extend the life of their cars. Today's thinking is that low mileages kill modern cars, and that you've got to treat 'em mean to keep 'em keen.

There could be an interesting story behind this car that would help it to sell, and this mileage thing could have been a good starting point. Instead the ad copy falls straight into the 'rattle off the spec and chuck in lots of disclaimers' category. The PH grammer (sic) police would have a field day with some of the spellings here, but that aside, phrases like 'trade disposals' don't really enhance the reader's piece (sic) of mind. Surely you'd be more interested to hear how the owner was an engineer who loved Fords and who bought himself this lovely Ghia X as a retirement present but only took it out on special occasions when his grandchildren came over to stay and he told them tales of the good old days when you could buy a house for 8,995 and still have change for an ocean cruise and people used to talk to each other you could leave your door wide open and go off on a cruise for three months and come back and everything would still be there because there were 18 bobbies for every street not like today with the youth of today all being drug addicts back in my day you could smoke anywhere you liked even in a hospital bed things were built to last and if you wanted to know anything you had to go to the library don't get me started on libraries.

They could have said that in the ad. Well, some of it anyway. They could have made up a story. Surely anything's better than Centre Rear Seat Belt, Mirrors External, Seating Capacity Five Seats and DOES NOT EFFECT YOUR STATUTORY RIGHTS. Still not sure how they'd explain the slight tattiness of it now though.

But let's park that one up and examine in a here and now type of way exactly what you will get for your 1,499 sovs. The answer to that is one of the last examples of a mainstream Johnny Average motor to get an indulgently big and lazy motor, bunged in there by Ford for no other reason than it made you better than everybody else. Really. If your firm was locked into a Ford-only fleet, and you were the manager of a department rather than one of the under-henchmen, you would have wanted some way of distinguishing yourself from the filthy herd. You would have deserved it, too, by heaven. And this Mondeo 2.5 Ghia X would have done the job.

If you could get around the brand image, these Mk3 Mondeos were a very nice steer. They had plenty of space, a massive boot and good handling too thanks to the Focus-style Control Blade rear suspension. As noted earlier, the amount of power you got from your schmancy-sounding 24-valve 2.5-litre V6 wasn't that great ยญ- just 168bhp. It didn't even break into single figures on the 0-60. A TDCi diesel was faster. But the Duratec V6 was smooth and flexible and as well-suited to the Durashift 5-tronic automatic gearbox as any Mondeo engine could be. That Durashift was one of those 'sealed for life' gearboxes that didn't really like to be sealed for life.

The benefit of low power in a big engine is that there's not much stress there and 53,000 miles should literally be nothing on one of these. Well, not literally, obviously, but you know what we mean. Noble managed to squeeze well over 300hp out of the Duratec and Mountune used to do good work there too, maybe still do.

Having said that, the Duratec V6 is not what you'd call bulletproof. Water pump failure (plastic impellers on the original units, groogh) can lead to head gaskets going. Plastic roller guides for the cambelt weren't the best idea either, and piston slap/cylinder bore wear can also spoil your day.

The idle control valve is known for making what is referred to in Mondeo circles as a 'moosing' noise. This is a noise with which Shed is all too familiar, and he doesn't even own a V6 Mondeo.

In mid-2003 Ford added more quality to the Mondy, plus more kit. And that brings us to the other thing going for this one: the chrome script on the boot lid. The Ghia X's equipment package is something you'd get in a mid-spec SUV these days, of course. Why, there's not even a sat-nav. Then again you didn't need a sat-nav back then, you could just ask anyone in the street and they would tell you where to go, it was a lot friendlier in those days people had time for each other -ย oh, sorry, where were we?

Oh yes, Ghia X. That spec was a proper big deal in 2003. Indeed, Shed thinks this may well have been the poshest and dearest mainstream car in Ford's entire 2003 UK range, when the blue oval commanded nearly 15 per cent of the total British market share, and diesels - while definitely starting to gain a foothold -ย were nowhere near as big as they are now.

Just as an aside, it's remarkable to note that the Ford GT came out just one year after this Mondeo was built, in 2004. Doesn't seem that long ago somehow. Mind you, the years were much longer then.

Here's the ad.

CALL OUR TRADE DISPOSALS MANAGER NICK ON 07977 223024 THIS VEHICLE WAS TAKEN IN PART EXCHANGE BY US. WE WILL ALWAYS GIVE YOU AN HONEST APPRAISAL OF THE VEHICLE BEFORE YOU TRAVEL. MECHANICAL INSPECTION'S RECOMMENDED FOR YOUR OWN PIECE OF MIND. WE ARE UNABLE TO OFFER AN ADDITIONAL WARRANTY ON THIS VEHICLE DUE TO THE AGE AND MILES. THIS DOES NOT EFFECT YOUR STATUTORY RIGHTS. PLEASE CALL FOR AN APPOINTMENT.. Metallic Paint,Cruise Control,Central Door Locking - Remote,Immobiliser,Alarm,Anti-Lock Brakes,Power-Assisted Steering,Front Fog Lights,Head Restraints - Front/Rear,Air Bag Driver,Air Bag Passenger,Air Bag Side - Front Side & Front Curtain,Centre Rear Seat Belt,Computer - Driver Information System,Adjustable Steering Column/Wheel - Rake/Reach,Electric Windows - Front/Rear,Heated Front Screen,Speakers - Four,Upholstery Cloth/Leather,Armrest - Rear,Seats Heated - Driver/Passenger,Seat Height Adjustment - Electric Driver,Seat Lumbar Support - Driver/Passenger Electric,Seating Capacity - Five Seats,Power Socket - Front,Air-Conditioning - Automatic,Body Coloured Bumpers,Mirrors External - Electric/Heated



P.H. O'meter

Join the PH rating wars with your marks out of 10 for the article (Your ratings will be shown in your profile if you have one!)

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
Rate this article

Comments (125) Join the discussion on the forum

  • daveco 26 Jan 2018

    Why so little hp when other manufacturers such as Honda and Toyota were making the same from 1.6 NA units??

  • cerb4.5lee 26 Jan 2018

    I ran a mk2 Mondeo 2.5 V6 Ghia X as a shed for three years, it was lovely and it made a great shed because it was cheap/comfy and well specced.

    If I was in the market again I'd be looking at these for sure.

  • RumbleOfThunder 26 Jan 2018

    Oh no the "stressed" malarkey has spread to the editorial team now. eek. It's "Sachs dampers" all over again. eek

  • V8 FOU 26 Jan 2018

    Good shed and an excellent narrative, Tony!

  • cerb4.5lee 26 Jan 2018

    Mine was a manual and the auto really seems to blunt the performance big time in these.

View all comments in the forums Make a comment