First production Ford B-MAX preview

We think that Nissan and Vauxhall should be worried, as the new B-MAX, which was previewed at Ford’s headquarters in Essex yesterday, is designed to revolutionise the B-segment and sure to steal sales from the Note and Meriva. The new compact mini MPV, which is based on a stretched Fiesta chassis, will be on sale in September with prices starting at £12,995.

Key selling features of the B-MAX include the most obvious – the lack of a central B post. Instead, the B-post is built into the B-MAX’s doors and stiff steel structure.

Small family buyers in particular are bound to be attracted to this pillarless car, as getting items such as baby seats in and out of the back of the Ford is particularly easy with the unobstructed 1.5-metre side opening.

There’s also a neat Fiesta-inspired dashboard and a spacious interior with foldable front and rear seats. Plus, a practically-sized boot.

On top of the clever door, the B-MAX will also be available with the amazing 119bhp 1.0-litre three-cylinder EcoBoost petrol engine, emitting 114g/km and returning 57.6mpg economy.

Finally, this baby Ford MPV will be available with clever technology new to this segment including Sync Connectivity. Basically an onboard computer system, it can read incoming texts and operate digital music players, by the driver selecting tunes simply by requesting the title of any song out loud.One of the cleverest features we spotted when we looked round the B-MAX, has to be the mechanical mechanism that stops the sliding rear door open when the car is being re-fueled.So will it be a sales success? Well, this car was shown at a local Ford dealer event this month, which resulted in 35 pre-road tests and 3 firm orders.