Design Footnote: somewhere inside Ford, someone nodded quietly to the firm’s past.
A few months back, while studying the parked cars in my area, I noticed that there was something deeper to the design of late-model Ford Mondeo Mk2s. Not very many cars have a solution that avoids both a horizontal and a vertical wraparound at the front end. The 2005 Mondeo has a design where the strongest line runs down the edge of the wing, down the lights and then goes horizontal under the valence, requiring a twist from forward to sideways mediated by a vertical descent.
Usually the bumper and bumperettes interfere with this sort of fold line being so clear. For this (and its generally extremely handsome, reserved form) the Mondeo deserves a credit. What is more unusual, for Ford especially, is that this solution has been used before, on the 1965 Ford Taunus. Ford don’t generally design with rear-view goggles on. The Taunus shown here parked outside my home by accident and I noticed the resemblance. And you can see in the image below that there is the same sculptural treatment although it is a bit bolder. This makes me like the Mondeo Mk2 even more than I do already.
If you look at the 2000 Ford Mondeo (below), as it was originally designed, the relation between the body side and front under-bumper or valence is less clear than the facelifted one. There is more of a continuity around the side to the front bumper on the early car. Actually, I think the relationship is ambiguous, neither flowing down from bonnet to valence nor flowing from bodyside to front. I think the 2000 version is good in isolation but the 2005
car is better, bringing out something incipient in the 2000 model and so genuinely adding to it. So often, facelifts run counter to the original character of a design. This one avoids that fault.