2012 Ford Flex Limited 4dr Wagon AWD (3.5L 6cyl 6A)
I have a fam of 5, we live at 9000 ft on top of a mountain in Colorado with switchbacks an heavy winters, I commute 30 min each way to work and live on a very tight budget. I have had over a dozen vehicles in the last 15 years, as I seem to have the devils luck in cars. This Flex has been my lifesaver. Regular maintenance, the occasional windshield replacement (living in The Rockies does that), and switching 20"rain tires for 18" snow tires has been my only costs in 2 years, purchased used at 98k, now has almost 150k (we road trip a lot too). Plus we have the EcoBoost which has saved our lives countless times living on the hwy and gas mileage is pretty dang decent.
The engine completely blew on the car and had to be replaced, at a cost of $13,000. The car still had $18,000 left on the loan and was blue booked at about $21,000. Ford dealer said that since I was late on an oil change (by about 4 thousand miles), that caused the failure. They said when they went to drain the oil, it was thick and black and that is what caused the engine to fail. I said BS, the engine, in the process of failing, CAUSED the oil to become black and thick, because there is NO WAY that missing one oil change by only a few thousand miles can cause anything close to that kind of damage. Bottom line: I paid for the new engine then DUMPED (sold) the POS as fast as I could. I have had great experiences with Ford trucks going back to the 90's. I think this may have been simply a LEMON, but the dealer didn't give a crap. Believe it or not, I replaced the Flex with a 2015 F150 with ecoboost engine ... we'll see how this goes. The AWD transfer case (part of the transmission) fails on these cars! Cost $1,600 (with labor, the part is about $1000) to replace it ... that is IF they don't find other issues due to RUST on the parts that have to be removed to replace the transfer case. In my case: the right side control arm had to be replaced because they could not get the ball joint to release, so the ball joint got ruined in the process AND since Ford in its quest to save FORD money has front control arms with the ball joints built in and not replaceable means that bottom line: ball joint (a $20 part) fails, you end up buying a $200 control arm and paying $100 in labor to change it. So now we are at $1,900. Next is the passenger side turbo charger .. it is located forward and low on the engine and has no protective covering or anything to protect it from the elements, so it RUSTS - badly! It has to be disconnected to replace the transfer case. The mounting flange and bolts rust so bad that they break when attempting to remove. Now we are buying a new turbo charger at $586 plus $560 in labor! So NOW, the cost of replacing this transfer case is a whopping $3,046!! My advice: if your Flex is going over 60,000 miles GET RID OF IT!!
We have had the car for one year, the only reason we bought it was because my wife and I had twins. Well 55k miles into the car and only 4 years old and the rack and pinion has to be replaced. Its not covered under the powertrain warrant so my wife and I are out $1k. Thanks Ford POS. Ill never buy one again. The car wasnt cheap to start as its a limited. Ive NEVER owned a car that has needed a major repair like this that had less than100k miles.
We purchased a Flex in 2012 to meet the needs of traveling, towing boats and moving. The car performed admirably. Unfortunately, we recently had a severe accident at highway speeds which totaled our car. The air bags deployed properly and the interior was untouched. Engineering is excellent and we look to replace the car with another Flex!