I own a Ford. At the beginning of the year I decided to get a new car and I purchased a Ford EcoSport. I love it. I love all the bells and whistles, I love how economical it is and I love the after sales support which has, for me, been superb. I’m a fan of the brand and I love my car.
I was recently given a Ford B-Max to drive for two weeks. It isn’t a car I’d purchase and it isn’t a car I’d need. There is no doubt in my mind that the Ford B-Max is designed for a family. The back doors don’t open out like normal cars. Rather they slide back. It’s a nifty trick if you think of moms with car seats or those fancy prams that can clip out into little cots to put in the car. They can roll the pram to the car, slide the door back and get the cot thing in without a problem. You also don’t need to worry too much about little ones smashing doors into the car parked next to you because of the nifty slide. It was the first thing I noticed and understood.
The Ford B-Max is designed for a mom with her hands full.
There’s a few other features in the B-Max that made me immediately dub it the Mom Mobile. It has seven airbags (yup seven) including curtain airbags that run along the side of the vehicle. It also has an anti-locking braking system with emergency braking and hill launch assist (imagine how useful that is during the school run in peak hour traffic while waiting at a robot on an incline.
It also comes with all the technology joys I love in my current car. Ford SYNC is a life saver. I spent 80% of my time driving talking on the phone. I find sitting in traffic to be “dead time” and usually use it to plan meetings or catch up with friends who are tired of me cancelling dinner plans. Ford SYNC is standard in their vehicles. I hopped in to the B-Max and was able to pair my phone with the car system in a matter of minutes. I love SYNC for this very reason – it is so incredibly easy to use, even for the technology illiterate (read: my mom). The rear view camera on the B-Max is also pretty nifty when you’re leaving shopping centre parking lots as you can see what is behind you and get warned of obstructions. Works like a charm until one of those annoying parking guards steps in the way of the sensors.
One of my favourite tech features of the B-Max was the Ford MyKey. This is pretty cool, you’re able to code the key of the car with various settings depending on the driver. So back to the Mom Mobile – you can programme speed-limits and also limit how loud the radio can go. I imagine this would be ideal when you’re trying to teach your moody 17 year old how to drive. You can also switch off all the driver-assistance features if you want – clever!
But how does it drive?
I really liked the Ford B-Max. It was quick and zippy. Like I said earlier, I drive an EcoSport which means I don’t like sitting “in” the car and prefer to feel a little bit higher on the road (I’m hoping my non-motoring journo speak is making sense here). Despite my personal preference, I didn’t feel like I was driving a little car. It felt secure and “up” off the road. It’s a great car to drive in traffic as well.
Still a Mom Mobile though
It is the little things in the B-Max that make it a great family car. The boot space is HUGE. There is more boot space in this little bugger than my EcoSport and a part of me was jealous. It also has the most luxurious of back seats with pull down arm rests complete with cup holders. Great for a stack of kids piled in to the back after football practice. Most moms these days cruise around town in their 4x4s but the truth is most of us can’t justify the expense of a Kuga. That’s why the B-Max is such a great Mom Mobile. It has the safety features and smarter add ons like those sliding doors and all that damn space to ensure you can toss a horde of kids in to it and still feel safe driving them around.
The price point is also a big seller for me. The entry level B-Max comes in at a little over R200k brand new.
I’m not the target market for this car.
I’m not going to go out and buy a B-Max. My EcoSport will do just fine thanks. However, my mother, despite having two adult kids, would love this car. I imagine she’d pile us all in it, dogs in the back, for a sneaky trip to the coast to relive our youth. It is small enough to zip around town but spacious enough to be the ideal family car. Toss away the 4×4 dream – you’ll be far happier (or at least your bank balance will be) with this zippy little Mom Mobile!
Disclaimer: They let me drive the car for a few days but then they come and fetch it. I don’t get to keep it.