The Ford Kuga is another car which felt very different depending on the wind conditions.
In still air, drivers came back impressed. In crosswinds, our judges weren’t so enthusiastic. When slowing down from high speeds the caravan’s Al-Ko ATC sensors picked up some slight movement, but nothing to make the driver nervous.
With 295lb ft of torque, there’s enough mid-range pulling power to comfortably handle any well-matched caravan, towing from 30-60mph in 12.6 seconds.
You’d expect a 4×4 to handle a hill-start test well and the Ford rose to the occasion. Very little effort was needed to pull to the top of the hill without wheelspin or excessive clutch slip.
With or without a tourer, the Kuga’s suspension is well judged. The ride can be fidgety over imperfect surfaces but it copes well with bigger bumps and handles neatly.
Inside, the Kuga has space for five, whereas as some similarly priced 4x4s like the Skoda Kodiaq have room for seven.
Otherwise the Kuga is quite practical – the boot had room for all but one item from our testing load of holiday luggage, and the towball and electrics were neatly installed.
The Vignale is the top-spec version of the Kuga, so there’s no shortage of toys included in the price. Judging by What Car?‘s research, there are big discounts available, too. However, resale values are relatively modest and you can buy roomier SUVs for similar money.