Ford Galaxy Review
The Ford Galaxy isn’t the most exciting seven-seater out there, but it’s affordable, very practical and even pretty good to drive
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If you can liken high-riding seven-seat SUVs to a luxury chocolate bar, then the equally practical Ford Galaxy has more in common with a Milky Way than its fancy namesake. It’s far from the poshest MPV on sale, but it’s affordable and tasty enough to enjoy every day.
That said, the Ford Galaxy has recently undergone a few nips and tucks to help keep it looking fresh, including some new alloy wheels and revamped interior tech.
Unfortunately, while the 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system is much easier to use than the old car’s frustratingly fiddly unit, it’s still a bit trickier to use than the system you get in a VW Sharan. That said, you can get it with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone mirroring to get around having to use Ford’s system.
Sadly, there isn’t much you can do to spice up the Galaxy’s rather lacklustre cabin. It doesn’t feel quite as plush as in a VW Sharan and it loses out in the looks department to the futuristic design you’ll find in a Citroen Grand C4 Spacetourer. At least everything’s laid out nice and sensibly though, and you can get 18-way electrically adjustable front seats to help make long journeys as relaxing as possible.
The Ford Galaxy probably won’t wow you with its slightly dated interior and unassuming looks, but prepared to be impressed by its super roomy interior and massive boot
Things are equally comfortable in the Ford Galaxy’s sliding and reclining middle seats. There’s enough space for three adults to side side-by-side without rubbing elbows or scrabbling for foot space.
Getting into the Ford Galaxy’s rearmost seats is dead easy, and there’s even space for adults to sit fairly comfortably without feeling too claustrophobic thanks to the large windows.
Even with all seven seats in place, there’s enough space in the Ford Galaxy’s boot for a weekly shop. Fold all but the front seats down and it has a load bay big enough to put some vans to shame.
If carrying plenty of heavy loads sounds like something you’ll be doing regularly, you’ll want to pick a Galaxy with a 190hp 2.0-litre diesel engine. There’s also a 150hp 2.0-litre diesel model that’s a better bet if you spend more time in town. Both can be had with an automatic – instead of the standard six-speed manual – gearbox to help take the stress out of long drives in stop-start traffic, but only automatic versions come with the option of adaptive cruise control that matches your speed to other cars.
The Ford Galaxy is dead easy to drive, whichever engine you pick. Its light controls and good visibility mean it’s pretty easy to park and its suspension does a decent job ironing out bumps and potholes.
It doesn’t feel quite as nimble as the oddly agile S-Max on a twisty country road, but the Ford Galaxy feels more sure-footed than most MPVs. As a result, it makes a good choice if you’re looking for a spacious family-focused seven-seater that comes with a decent amount of standard kit and a massive boot, yet still drives like a small-ish car.
See how much you can save by visiting our new car deals pages or read on for our in-depth interior, practicality and driving Ford Galaxy review sections.
The Ford Galaxy is a seriously spacious seven-seat MPV with plenty of handy features that make it easy to live with, but the uber-comfy 18-way adjustable seats don’t come as standard
The Ford Galaxy’s roomy cabin comes with seven seats arranged in three rows. There’s loads of space for lofty adults to get comfortable in the front seats and you can even get them with 18-way electric adjustment that’s earned them the seal of approval from the German Campaign for Healthy Backs.
The seats in the middle row aren’t quite so adjustable, but you can still slide and recline them and there’s ample space for six-footers to stretch out. Things get a little cosier if you carry three adults side-by-side, but the Ford Galaxy’s cabin is wide enough to prevent any arguing over elbow room.
Like the smaller Ford S-Max, you can slide the middle seats forward to let passengers climb into the rearmost row but, unlike this car, the Ford Galaxy’s back seats are spacious enough for adults to sit fairly comfortably. Its large windows mean the rearmost seats don’t feel all that cramped like they do in some seven-seat MPVs and SUVs, too.
If you need to carry some very young passengers, you’ll find it’s a doddle to lift a bulky child seat through the Galaxy’s wide door openings and there’s plenty of space to secure it using the standard Isofix anchor points in the middle row.
There are plenty of handy cubby holes dotted about the Ford Galaxy; from the deep front door pockets to the decent-sized glovebox and roomy storage tray under the front armrest.
You get a couple of cupholders in the centre console behind the gear lever and there’s an extra storage area on top of the dashboard. You don’t get a folding armrest in the middle row of seats, but you do get a pair of roomy door bins and some seatback pockets.
Those in the rearmost seats get some storage trays beside each seat with a built-in cupholder, but that’s about it.
The Ford Galaxy doesn’t just have a roomy cabin – its boot is massive, too. With all seven seats in place, there’s still space left over for 300 litres of luggage – more than enough room for a big-ish weekly shop.
Flip the rearmost seats down and you’ll have enough space to carry a few large suitcases, a baby buggy and an assortment of soft bags or go the whole hog and fold all but the front seats down to bump the Galaxy’s carrying capacity to a whopping 2,339 litres.
The second and third row of seats can be folded down in 32 different combinations using handy levers by the boot opening so you can carry a few passengers and some oddly shaped luggage without any hassle.
With all five rear seats flipped down out of the way, the Ford Galaxy’s boot floor is completely flat. This makes it dead easy to lift in some heavy luggage and means you can slide boxes all the way up behind the front seats without them getting stuck on any awkward bumps in the floor.
The Ford Galaxy is dead easy to drive and feels fairly nimble for such a large car, but you don’t get many engines to choose from
Don’t go expecting the Ford Galaxy to feel like an agile hatchback to drive, but it certainly has the edge over some equally large MPVs on a corner-ridden country road
You can currently get the Ford Galaxy with two diesel engines and with either a manual or automatic gearbox.
The 150hp 2.0-litre diesel engine is a decent all-rounder. It doesn’t grumble like clattery diesel engines of old around town and it cruises happily at motorway speeds with seven people on board.
If you plan to carry lots of heavy luggage or ever use your Ford Galaxy for towing, you’ll want to consider the more powerful 190hp 2.0-litre diesel engine instead. It isn’t quite as economical as the 150hp unit, but it’ll power past slow-moving traffic without too much fuss – even when fully loaded.
Both engines come with a six-speed manual gearbox as standard. It’s smooth and precise around town, but if you spend lots of time in heavy traffic you’ll want to upgrade to the optional eight-speed automatic. This changes gear smoothly at speed and doesn’t lurch during low-speed manoeuvers.
There’s no getting around the Ford Galaxy’s large size, but it’s still pretty easy to drive in town. This is partly down to its massive windows and raised driving position, but the light controls mean a tricky three-point turn won’t leave your arms aching.
Its suspension does a decent job ironing out bumps around town too, although you will hear a little wind and tyre noise once you head out onto some faster roads.
The Ford Galaxy doesn’t feel quite as nimble as the small S-Max on a twisty road, but it controls its tall body well without a great deal of unpleasant leaning in tight bends. Combine this with the Galaxy’s very large windows, and there shouldn’t be any reason for passengers to feel overly car sick on long drives.
Speaking of long drives, you can get automatic versions of the Galaxy fitted with adaptive cruise control to help take the sting out of long stints behind the wheel and automatic emergency braking – to help prevent avoidable collisions – comes as standard across the range.
The Ford Galaxy’s feels much posher than in previous models, but alternatives look more modern and come with more intuitive infotainment systems