New Ford Mondeo Evos spy pics in winter testing

The high-riding SUV nature of the new Ford Mondeo is exposed in new images of snowy, off-road assessments.

Ford will reboot the Mondeo in 2022 with the launch of the much rumoured Ford Mondeo Evos. The move represents a new lease of life for the popular Mondeo name, which will be applied to a rakish looking new crossover SUV – a response to the dwindling customer demand for traditional family sedans.

Following sightings of early prototypes on US roads earlier in the year, the newcomer has now been spied undergoing an important aspect of its development programme. The Mondeo Evos has been caught winter testing, and while our old on-road shots of the next Mondeo are a better showcase of its design, these new images give a clearer sense of the new car’s generous ground clearance.

Riding tall in the snow, the Ford Mondeo Evos test mule was sighted in the States once again, but that should be no surprise – the new SUV-inspired Mondeo will be a global model for Ford. It’s expected to land on the US market badged as the next-generation Ford Fusion.

Other spy shots show that Ford isn’t the only car company developing an SUV-styled reboot of a famous badge.

The Mondeo, unveiled back in 1992, was one of the cars that helped transform Ford into the commercial success that it is today. It consolidated a range of bit-part global model lines, was packed with kit, and was one of the first modern Fords that was truly great to drive. And now, almost 30 years on from its introduction, Ford looks set to apply the same extensive overhaul to the Mondeo’s replacement.

Sales of traditional sedans, as well as MPVs, have nosedived in the past 20 years as buyers flock to more modern and stylish crossovers and SUVs. Bosses at the firm have surmised that a radical rethink is necessary.

That’s just one of the reasons why the Mondeo will morph from its traditional shapes into a higher-riding crossover, as seen in the latest spy shots. It’s a bodystyle which has become the choice for family car buyers, but also one that offers practicality benefits over a hatch or wagon.

Our exclusive images give you an idea of how the Mondeo’s new bodystyle will be matched with a completely fresh look. Slender LED daytime running lights can be picked out beneath the prototype’s cladding, with small main headlamp units sitting either side of a wide hexagonal grille.

The crossover’s more svelte, sloping roofline, which tapers away towards the rear of the newcomer, can also be quite clearly made out in our spy photographs.

Although there are no shots of the interior, Automotive Daily understands the cabin will also be subject to an equally thorough update, with a bank of digital displays sitting on top of the dash, stretching from one side of the cabin to the other.

This radical overhaul is one of the reasons why Ford could also choose to adapt the name of the newcomer to Mondeo Evos, a name that the company successfully trademarked last year. The brand revealed a concept car called the Ford Evos back in 2011, which previewed a sleek coupé that bears a resemblance to the profile of the prototypes currently undergoing testing.

Mechanical details on the new Mondeo replacement are being kept under wraps but one thing is certain: the model won’t be fully electric, at least not initially. An exhaust system can be picked out on some of the rear shots of the prototypes, confirming that Ford will forge ahead with hybrid and plug-in hybrid technology first.

The Mondeo should sit on the same C2 platform as the Focus and Kuga, because it has been engineered with the flexibility to support a range of model sizes and bodystyles, including crossovers. Crucially, that architecture can also accommodate a full suite of hybrid powertrains, ranging from 48-volt mild-hybrid to plug-in hybrid power. It’s almost certain that the Mondeo will be offered with a completely electrified petrol engine range, as diesel continues to be phased out of larger cars.

The system is expected to be carried over from the Kuga, comprising a 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine and an electric motor that’s good for a claimed 50km on electric power. That figure is likely to be greater in the Mondeo because further developments in battery technology could allow Ford to eke out more range, while the larger footprint of the Mondeo will enable a larger, more power-dense battery to be fitted.

It’s possible Ford could adapt its C2 architecture to support a fully electric powertrain, however the firm’s approach to EVs looks to be model-specific. The new Mustang Mach-e is based on a dedicated EV platform, and the company has also confirmed that it will develop an electric vehicle based on the VW Group’s MEB platform used beneath the ID.3 hatchback.

Jonathan Burn

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