Few names are a synonymous with the MPV market as the Ford Galaxy. Since its launch in 1995 it's been one of the default choices for big families on the move.
This latest version offers flexible seating, low running costs and a plethora of engine choices. However, how does it compare to its competitors such as the Citroen Grand C4 Picasso, Volkswagen Touran and SEAT Alhambra? Well to be honest it's not bad at all.
One of the Galaxy's biggest plus points is that it doesn't feel like a big car to drive. In fact, it's one of the most agile seven-seaters around with good body control and sharp steering. However, once you turn the steering wheel beyond a certain point then it does go a little bit too light which means that judging your input can be a bit tricky. On a more positive note the Galaxy rides over most road surfaces rather well. Although there is some wind and road noise it's not overly intrusive.
1.5 litre and 2.0 litre engines are available to buyers but as you'd expect it's the diesels that make most sense. We quite like the 2.0 litre 150 diesel because it has the right blend of performance, economy and value for money. The standard 6-speed manual gearbox has a slick action while there's a smooth shifting automatic as an option.
If you're coming to the Ford Galaxy as an SUV then you'll certainly like the raised driving position and the excellent visibility means it's relatively easy to park. Although the dashboard is not all that interesting it's logically laid out. What really lets this car down is the infotainment system because although the home screen is simple enough it's the sub menus and fiddly icons that make it quite laborious to use.
Practicality-wise, storage is very good. There's enough cubbies and hidden compartments dotted around the cabin to store all of your various knick-knacks. In fact, you'll find that the Galaxy probably has the deepest central storage you'll find in any lorry never mind car! There's a real feeling of space inside whether you're travelling in the middle row of seats or the ones right at the back. There's no central transmission tunnel which means that even with three people sat across the seats there's still plenty of room for everyone's feet. The three rear seats all have iSOfix points and they independently slide and recline. Even with all seven seats in place there's still room for your luggage and even more so in five-seat form. With all seats folded down boot space is simply massive!
There's no getting away from the fact that the Ford Galaxy is expensive when you compare it to its rivals. However, if you're buying it on monthly finance then that difference is less of an issue. The Galaxy's fuel consumption is good and lower emissions means that its running costs are affordable. There's also little need to look beyond the entry level Zetec trim because this gets you climate control, DAB digital radio, Bluetooth and six airbags. The only option we'd recommend that you add is automatic emergency breaking.
The Ford Galaxy is a supremely capable family MPV which we would recommend over direct rivals. However, if your family doesn't require you to transport seven people then you're probably better off with something smaller and cheaper such as the Volkswagen Touran or a large SUV. We have thousands of used Ford Galaxy cars to choose from so why not take a look!