/>

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.png
CNET Reviews staff
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 Ford Maverick: This super-affordable hybrid pickup could be a gamechanger

More Galleries

2022 Ford Maverick: This super-affordable hybrid pickup could be a gamechanger

66 Photos
Nintendo Switch: The 36 best games to play in 2021

More Galleries

Nintendo Switch: The 36 best games to play in 2021

37 Photos
Toyota Land Cruiser J300 flagship is now forbidden fruit

More Galleries

Toyota Land Cruiser J300 flagship is now forbidden fruit

17 Photos
Refreshed Tesla Model S has a Knight Rider steering wheel

More Galleries

Refreshed Tesla Model S has a Knight Rider steering wheel

16 Photos
2022 Lexus NX crossover looks better inside and out

More Galleries

2022 Lexus NX crossover looks better inside and out

54 Photos
New movies coming out in 2021: Netflix, Marvel and more

More Galleries

New movies coming out in 2021: Netflix, Marvel and more

65 Photos
Best dating apps of 2021

More Galleries

Best dating apps of 2021

13 Photos