Better than: 2009 Ford Flex
But not as good as: 2011 Ford Flex Superleggera
GRM Bang For The Buck Index: 64.03
We've reviewed the 2010 Ford Flex Limited before, but this time we got to sample it with the optional Ecoboost engine. Again, we were blown away.
This vehicle offers a cavernous cockpit, great turn-in and overall handling, as well as tons of power from the turbocharged V6. It even delivers a combined fuel mileage of over 20 mpg. If you need the space of a minivan but also want some style and sport, the Flex seems like the perfect choice.
The downside is that all of this space, style and sport comes at a price. The version we tested had a sticker price in the mid-$40s. In our minds, that's getting into luxury territory.
The Flex packs some poshness in the form of soft leather seating, plenty of creature comforts and a navigation system. About the only thing we found ourselves wanting is for Ford to acknowledge that the Flex is really just a fancy station wagon, not a crossover/all-activity/wunderwagen. Marketing be damned.
Other staff views
I'll start by saying that I didn't event touch the 2010 version of the Flex. Not because I didn't have the opportunity, but because I already liked the 2009 model equipped with the Duratec V6 that now serves as the model's base engine. Adding about 100 horsepower surely couldn't hurt my opinion, and it looks pretty good in black with contrasting roof panel.
Some people complain about the boxy styling, but I reallylike the bank vault chunkiness and simple shape of the Flex. I suspect it's the Dad in me that wants a Flex in our family arsenal of locomotive solutions, and would enthusiastically recommend one to folks considering a "traditional" SUV.
So with nothing but nice things to say, why didn't I drive the newest version of the Flex? It's simple...I was already convinced that last year's model would be a great family car for me, and I simply don't need this sort of temptation in my life. The earliest versions of the Flex are turning up for under $25,000 on the used market, so in a few years they should be at the right spot on the depreciation curve to make one mine. Of course, by then my kids should be driving their own cars, so I may just end up with a Mustang instead.
Once again, I am blown away by this vehicle... cavernous space, great turn in and overall handling, tons of power from the turbo charged engine and fuel mileage over 20 mpg. All this and built by an American car company. The fit and finish seem real good. I would seriously consider buying one of these and it is one of my favorite vehicles.
David S. Wallens
I didn't drive this particular Flex, but I drove a very similar one while visiting Denver. That also gave me a chance to sample it at altitude, as we took it up to Bailey--about 8000 feet above sea level.
It performed awesomely. Despite falling snow and crappy weather, the Flex flexed its muscles (like that?) and chugged up the hills. It also carried my in-laws in comfort. And keeping them comfortable is always a good thing.
Yeah, the cost. The one I drove had all-wheel drive, EcoBoost, 20-inch wheels and seating for seven. Sticker was $43,200. Is that too much for an oversized, all-wheel-drive wagon? I'll leave that up to you. On the plus side, the Flex will do a lot. It offers the practicality of a full-size SUV but with a lower center of gravity. If I'm not going to be crossing rivers and jumping sand dunes, being close to the ground is usually a good thing.
So, is this some kind of new segment-busting vehicle, or just another take on the old-fashioned station wagon?
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