The Good The 2013 Ford Flex SEL AWD offers plenty of space for passengers and bulky cargo, it accepts a wide range of audio sources, and you can add on a lot of driver aid and safety tech for not much more money.
The Bad The MyFord Touch system, while improved dramatically, still feels slow to respond and slightly cluttered.
The Bottom Line The boxy 2013 Ford Flex SEL AWD is not for everyone, but it's worth a look if you're in the market for a big vehicle with big space and plenty of available cabin tech.
Ford Flex wraps clever tech in boxy, retro style
This isn't the first time that we've had a Ford Flex in the Car Tech garage. However, the boxy beasts are so rare in the areas surrounding CNET's San Francisco offices that it's easy to forget how large and imposing this vehicle is in the sheet metal. So, I was taken aback when I rounded a corner of the Car Tech garage and was greeted by the wide and long hunk of steel that is the 2013 Ford Flex SEL AWD.
Boxy body and storage space
Depending on where you're getting your information, the Flex is either a gigantic wagon, a large crossover, or an SUV with lower-than-average ground clearance. Long, low, and wide, the Flex's true nature is betrayed by its underpinnings, the D4 platform, which it shares with the , fairly solidly planting this vehicle in the crossover class as far as I'm concerned.
Visually, the Flex makes heavy use of 90-degree angles in its design with a very upright green house and flattened ends that are contrasted with long horizontal accent lines that run down the sides of the vehicles and across its grille and liftgate. To my eye, she looks something like the offspring of a, a , and -- thanks to our tester's ginger ale metallic green paint -- a large dill pickle.