They say never judge a book by its cover, that’s the case with the 2010 Ford Flex AWD Limited Edition with EcoBoost TM. Arguably one of the more unattractive crossover vehicles currently on the market, what it lacks in good looks, the Flex makes up for in revolutionary technology and a ride that is on par with many more expensive luxury models.
On first glance the Flex may make you think of a hearse. It is a big, boxy and elongated beast of a vehicle that looks like the result of shoving the front end of a truck on the back end of a van, circa 1980. The Limited Edition model has the added attractiveness of having a white roof, regardless of the colour on the rest of the vehicle. Twenty-inch aluminum wheels give the vehicle a commanding feel and ribbing along the front, sides and back of the vehicle emphasize the boxy design.
Inside leather seats and a spacious interior are offset with shiny wood paneling housing state of the art technological gadgets and an analog clock inset beneath the touch screen system in the dash. The unique Vista Roof TM brings the outdoors in by showcasing four sunroofs, one at the front, two over each of the second row seats, and one across the third row seating. Put it all together and the Flex is an odd mixture of old fashioned and high tech.
It’s easy to forget about looks once you take it on the road. The EcoBoost TM engine makes it seem more like you are driving a low slung sports model than a huge crossover that can seat six. Easily keeping up with sporty SUVs on the highway, the only fault in the Flex’s performance on the road is a ride that is so smooth it’s easy to forget how fast you are going.
Handling is also a dream thanks to the AdvanceTrac® with RSC® (Roll Stability Control TM) that works with the vehicle and the driver to ensure all four wheels stay on the ground regardless of cornering, wind or speed. Even better, the nightmare of parking such a behemoth is not a concern thanks to a rear-view camera to help you back up without worry, and Ford’s Active Park Assist that searches for a parking spot, and perfectly parallel parks for you.
For the technology inclined, the Ford Flex is a fantasy come to life. The retro wood paneling on the dash houses a highly sophisticates system known as Microsoft SYNC. SYNC enables digital media and Bluetooth-enabled mobile devices to interact with the vehicle through voice commands, the touch-screen system and controls inset into the steering-wheel.
While driving you can speak to the SYNC system and ask it to find your favourite song on your iPod, call your best friend or have it read your text messages to you. SYNC also provides a navigation system, traffic and information. The technology is more than just cool, helping keep the driver focused on the road instead of on mobile devices.
If you can get past how the 2010 Ford Flex AWD Limited Edition with EcoBoost TM looks you will find a great crossover vehicle with the muscle and size to take you anywhere, and the technology that make it a pleasure to get there.