2009 Ford Flex Limited is Worth a Test Drive
December 16, 2008
My brother drives a 2002 Ford Explorer and now he's shopping for a new mid-sized SUV. He called me for some advice and I asked he what he was considering. He said, 'We were going to look at that new boxy thing but we're done with Ford.'
I said, 'Hold on a second.'
I bought the 2009 Ford Flex Limited for our long term fleet about two months ago but I hadn't driven it until just recently. On the freeway I noticed it had a very pleasant ride, like a big, heavy luxury car, and it was extremely well insulated. I liked the wide leather seats and loved the feel of the wood and leather steering wheel.
The surprise came when I reached my exit and swung into the spiraling off ramp.
Suddenly, this heavyweight showed it could be level, stable and composed through a tight corner. The only thing that kept it from being downright fun was the light steering.
It's a surprise how big this vehicle is inside. The backseat legroom is amazing! For a big vehicle it gets about 18 mpg in a mix of city and highway conditions which is nothing to write home about.
But could I really recommend this vehicle? Would I buy it? The only thing that puts me off is that, after 12,264 miles I feel a hard upshift from the transmission. That, coupled with the fact that my brother is car shopping because his Explorer's transmission is has a degenerative illness, kept me from being more enthusiastic about this new Ford.
Still, I like the edgy styling, and love the way it drives. So I took the ultimate definitive stance: 'It's worth a test drive.'
Philip Reed, Senior Consumer Advice Editor @ 12,264 miles