Recently, I had the privilege of test-driving the new Ford Flex when I was treated to a night on the town, courtesy of The Ford Motor Company. The evening began when I was picked up at my home and chauffeured to Beverly Hills. There, eagerly awaiting my arrival was a fleet of 2009 Ford Flex’s. We were broken up into groups (ours was the coolest) and given the opportunity to drive the Flex to our first destination, the Corey Helford Gallery in West Los Angeles. As we sipped Champagne and noshed on sumptuous appetizers, we watched the Artist (Manone) hand paint an original one-of-a-kind piece of art on the roof a Flex.
From there, we made our way to one of LA’s hottest new eateries on La Cienega’s restaurant row, STK. It’s a Steak House, get it? We then sipped martinis and dined on an assortment of gourmet cuisine as we discussed the Flex, of course. Here are my thoughts. The Flex has a distinctive new design with signature side grooves, all black greenhouse and distinct two-tone roof which is like no other vehicle on the road. I was surprised by the space and comfort inside, with it’s upscale details and features, that combine to give Flex a contemporary interior environment under an available multi-panel Vista roof.
The Flex is powered by Ford’s award-winning 3.5-liter V-6 engine delivering 262 horsepower and uses advanced engine technology. Variable intake valve timing and a six-speed transmission delivers fuel economy of up to twenty-four miles per gallon highway, among the best in it's class. Flex incorporates an intelligent all-wheel drive system tuned to provide confident driving in all weather conditions. By constantly monitoring and predicting traction, the system can deliver torque to all four wheels, even before the wheels begin to slip. Paired with standard Advance Trac with RSC (Roll Stability Control), intelligent AWD can transfer torque front to rear and from side-to-side.
Flex is packed with innovative technology solutions that empower, not over power the driver. Ford SYNC (a Ford exclusive), voice-activated, hands free, in-vehicle communications and entertainment system offer even more functionality for the 2009 model year, with a 911 Assist and Vehicle Health Reports. Voice-activated navigation that integrates several functions, including destination entry, climate control and SIRIUS satellite radio into one easy-to-use system with information displayed on an eight inch touch-screen display. Again, almost everything is voice activated so you can access the features you want and still be able to concentrate on your driving.
The Flex also comes complete with a SIRIUS Travel Link that when combined with voice-activated navigation will provide users with a suite of data services including real-time traffic, coast-to-coast weather conditions, fuel pricing, and movie listings and sports scores. No matter where you are, the Flex will tell you where you can find the least expensive gas station. With continually rising fuel costs, that feature alone will help pay for itself. And with the EasyFuel capless fuel filler, which replaces the traditional fuel-filler cap, it provides a better seal and reduces the release of smog-forming vapors making it environmentally friendly as well.
Now lets get to the Flex sound system. The Sony audio system features 700 watts of power, 5.1 surround sound and ten speakers that deliver a rich, unique and dynamic sound that blew me away. As an available option, Flex offers a rearview in-dash video display when the vehicle is in reverse, so you can see what is directly behind you when backing up. There is also lighting controls inside, which can be programmed for seven different ambient colors depending on your mood. Oh and did I mention the refrigerator hidden in the console which can hold up to seven twelve ounce beverages? With all these exclusive features, it feels like your riding in a limousine rather than an SUV.
The Flex seats six adults comfortably, seven if you put up the arm rest in the middle. The leather seats are wide and roomy, (equivalent to business class seats on an airline). Here's the best part. The Flex starts at only $28,000. Did your jaw just drop? Mine did. With all new technology, style and luxury you won't even find in much higher end vehicles, the Ford FLEX is a no-brainer. So if your going on a road trip with the family or just cruising around town with your friends, THE FLEX IS IT!
For more information on Flex or any Ford product go to the website at