Ford Mondeo tyre changeBlackball Media

With our long-term Mondeo fast approaching a landmark 12,000 miles, it's safe to say that of our fleet it's been by far the busiest.

On a daily commute to and from the office it averages about 80 miles, but for the past couple of months it's been touring the country as a valuable member of the Blackball Media video team.

As an all-rounder there's no getting away from the fact that the Mondeo is right at the top of its game. There might be more spacious estates on the market, more affordable ones and better examples with stronger residual values but, overall, the Mondeo is an attractive proposition – especially when you consider competitive discounts are available because of large volumes, plus dealerships will be keen to clear forecourts ahead of an all-new model.

It's only when you get behind the wheel of some of its rivals that you really appreciate how good the Mondeo really is. At cruising speed, it remains refined and composed, but find a deserted country lane and its responsive steering and sharp handling are evident.

Having spent so much time behind the wheel, I've grown to appreciate just how well the Mondeo is stitched together. We did have a slight hitch this month with a puncture, but we can hardly blame that on the car.

Report by Nigel Swan (@motoringnut)

The knowledge

Model: Ford Mondeo Estate Titanium X
Price: £29,490 (as tested)
Engine: 2.0-litre, turbocharged diesel
Power: 161bhp, 340Nm
Max speed: 137mph
0-60mph: 8.7s
Emissions: 119g/km
Mileage this month: 1,331

This month's highlight

Spending some quality time with a car that's right at the top of its game...until we blew a tyre.