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See also the Ford Galaxie full-size car of the 1950s and 1960s
For the Ford Galaxy built in Argentina in the 1990s, see Ford Versailles.

The Ford Galaxy is a five-door large multi-purpose vehicle (MPV). It was first introduced in 1995, and is available in three generations.

Galaxy Mk1 (1995−2000)

The first Galaxy was designed as a joint venture product between Ford and the Volkswagen Group (VWAG), in order to catch up with the original MPV Renault Espace. Produced at the joint-venture AutoEuropa plant in Palmelamarker, Portugalmarker, the vehicle was badge-engineered to create three vehicles: the Ford Galaxy; by Volkswagen Passenger Cars as the Volkswagen Sharan; and by SEAT as the Alhambra.

The Galaxy used predominantly Volkswagen Group mechanicals, most notably the 2.8 litre VR6 petrol engine from the top versions of the Volkswagen Golf, as well as VWAG's 1.9 litre Turbocharged Direct Injection (TDI) turbodiesel unit. Initially only the 2.0 litre inline-four petrol version used a Ford powerplant - this derived from the Ford I4 DOHC engine. In later years this unit was supplemented by a 2.3 litre 16-valve version first seen in the facelifted Ford Scorpio. This engine was transversially mounted (as with the MKV Escort RS2000) as opposed to longitudinal mounting like in the Ford Scorpio.

All of the VWAG-sourced engines were supplied with "Ford" badges on the rocker covers, despite being of Volkswagen Group designs. All automatic transmissions were VWAG AG4 boxes, but manual gearboxes on all engines were VXT75 five-speed (modified versions of the trusted Ford MT75 five-speed set-up to suit the transverse engine layout).

The original interior used a mix of both Ford and VWAG components, using a Golf-derived instrument pack, and most of the switchgear, while the curved fascia moulding was of Ford design, heavily reminiscent of that used in the Ford Mondeo.

Galaxy Mk2 (2000−2006)

A major redesign in 2000 saw the Galaxy distance itself from its Volkswagen Group platform-mates. The car adopted the Ford corporate front end, while the interior benefited from an all-new dash, utilising high-quality materials and a design akin to the third-generation Ford Mondeo, introduced at a similar time as the new Galaxy.

Also new engines were available across the range, the newer 24v VR6, along with VWAG's Pumpe-Düse (PD) TDI engines available in (only on LX models), , and forms, these were matched to a six-speed manual transmission, a four-speed automatic transmission with manual sequential shift operation, and a five-speed automatic transmission (auto boxes were only available on variant).

This version is still available in Latin America, with 2.0, 2.3 and 2.8 petrol engines. However, the VWAG-sourced 1.9 TDI engine is no longer offered.

Galaxy Mk3 (2006−present)

The third generation Galaxy was introduced at the 2006 Geneva Motor Show, and went on sale alongside the shorter and lower Ford S-Max in June 2006.

The new Galaxy is larger than its predecessor and is a four pillar vehicle of entirely Ford design, with no Volkswagen Group content. No longer produced in Portugal, Europe's replacement Galaxy is assembled at a newly re-equipped plant alongside the Mondeo in Genkmarker, Belgiummarker. With the S-MAX catering to customers who require a sport-oriented multi-purpose vehicle (MPV), Ford were able to expand the Galaxy in every dimension without losing sales in size-conscious Europe.

Due to its size, Ford was unable to design the Galaxy using a full Kinetic Design format. However, Ford officially states that the car contains 'elements' of Kinetic Design, such as its trapezoidal grille, large wheelarches and angular headlights. No spare wheel is obtained when buying this car, a aerosol sealant-foam is given to seal punctures until a new tyre can be purchased.

Only Ford's engines are used, all diesels being from the Duratorq family of engines in and 1.8 litre format, and also and 2.0 TDCi versions. Two petrol engines are offered - the Duratec 2.0 variant and 2.3 litre petrol engine.

In the United Kingdommarker, the car is available in Edge, Zetec and Ghia trim levels. In February 2008, Ford announced that the Galaxy will be made available with the Titanium high series trim as seen on the Focus, C-MAX, Kuga, Mondeo and S-MAX ranges. The Titanium model will be specified to the same level as the Ghia but will add a 'techno' feel. At the same time the availability of a 2.3 TDCi engine option (joint design with Peugeot; 170hp) was announced.

One major selling point of the Galaxy and S-MAX is the "FoldFlatSystem". This design allows the second- and third-row seats to fold flat into the floor, although this step forward in seating design lowers the load carrying capacity of the vehicle.

See also

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