X

Photos: 2009 Ford Flex

At the grand opening for the San Francisco Ford-Mercury-Lincoln dealership, we got a close look at the new Ford Flex. This big wagon offers retro styling, something that made the new Ford Mustang so popular. But the Flex doesn't share the same kind of heritage, making its success less of a sure thing. The Flex goes on sale this summer.

CNET Reviews staff

See full bio
FordFlex_SS01_440.jpg
1 of 7 CNET Networks
Ford takes a risk with the boxy design of the Flex, but if the success of the Scion xB is any indication, there isn't much to fear. Boxy cars are gaining ground, with Nissan planning to bring its Cube model to the U.S. Of course, this being an American car, it is much bigger than the xB, offering three rows of seating.
FordFlex_SS02_440.jpg
2 of 7 CNET Networks
Retro elements on the Flex include the roof cap, available in white or silver, the ribs in the sides, which bring to mind wagons from the 1950s, and the silver tailgate insert. But the 3.5-liter V-6 under the hood is thoroughly modern, producing 262 horsepower. Ford says the car will get 17 mpg city and 24 mpg highway. Other Ford models we've tested with this engine stayed on the low side of that range.
FordFlex_SS03_440.jpg
3 of 7 CNET Networks
Interior elements are pure Ford, with materials and switchgear we've seen in other models. The quality feels good and the interior space is vast. Width in particular seems in large supply inside the Flex.
FordFlex_SS07_440.jpg
4 of 7 CNET Networks
The navigation system is Ford's newest generation, using a hard drive to store maps with space for music storage. It uses Sirius satellite radio for traffic information, and gets the Sirius Travel Link service, which offers fuel prices, movie times, weather, and sports scores. Sync is also available, letting you hook up cell phones and MP3 players. Sony supplies a premium audio system.
FordFlex_SS04_440.jpg
5 of 7 CNET Networks
The middle-row passengers get treated to a small refrigerator between the seats, big enough for a few cans of soda or maybe some fine cheeses.
FordFlex_SS05_440.jpg
6 of 7 CNET Networks
Beyond the refrigerator, middle-row passengers also get an AC outlet, perfect for keeping the laptop charged, and climate controls. The middle row is the place to be in the Flex.
FordFlex_SS06_440.jpg
7 of 7 CNET Networks
Stowable jump seats comprise the third row. Getting in and out of these hindmost seats doesn't look easy, so best to use this area for cargo, especially with the wide tailgate.

More Galleries

2022's Best TV Shows You Can't Miss on Netflix, HBO, Disney Plus and More

More Galleries

2022's Best TV Shows You Can't Miss on Netflix, HBO, Disney Plus and More

95 Photos
Hyundai Ioniq 6 EV Is a Slippery Sedan With Strange Details

More Galleries

Hyundai Ioniq 6 EV Is a Slippery Sedan With Strange Details

14 Photos
2023 Cadillac Lyriq Comes Out Swinging

More Galleries

2023 Cadillac Lyriq Comes Out Swinging

46 Photos
2023 Acura Integra: A Solid Sport Compact

More Galleries

2023 Acura Integra: A Solid Sport Compact

35 Photos
Movies Coming in 2022 From Marvel, Netflix, DC and More

More Galleries

Movies Coming in 2022 From Marvel, Netflix, DC and More

81 Photos
The 40 Absolute Best Games on Nintendo Switch

More Galleries

The 40 Absolute Best Games on Nintendo Switch

41 Photos
The 51 Best VR Games

More Galleries

The 51 Best VR Games

53 Photos