New Ford B-Max revealed

The Fiesta-based MPV was revealed as a concept car in 2011 but the first images of the road version have not been released by Ford ahead of its unveiling at the Geneva Motor Show in March.

Based on the popular new Ford Fiesta hatchback, the Ford B-Max is a taller, more upright model in order to seat five in more comfort.

A focus on practicality means the sliding side doors remain from the concept version and visibility is increased by the lack of a B-pillar, the pillar usually found between the front and rear passenger doors.

With the exception of the height and new door combination, the B-Max looks remarkably similar to the Fiesta and Ford is expecting the keen handling and impressive driving dynamics to carry over to the mini-MPV version.

With the new Vauxhall Meriva firmly in its sights, the Ford B-Max needs some eco-friendly engines to entice buyers and choices will include a new 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol developing 125PS, an engine set to be used in the larger Ford Focus and Ford C-Max.

It will also come with frugal diesel engine options and a sub-100g/km, road tax-free engine when it goes on sale.

Ford hopes the extra space and offered in the B-Max will entice new buyers looking for more space but lower running costs in a small car, according to Stephen Odell, chairman and CEO, Ford of Europe.

He said: “The B-Max combines an exciting, innovative design with features that only previously have been found in bigger cars.

“It’s a brand new car that responds to the needs of an increasing number of customers who want much more from their small cars.”

New Ford B-Max prices have not been released but the car is expected to go on sale in Ford dealerships in September.