As a dad, I’m happy to report we need not resign ourselves to that sea of hum-drum mini-vans and SUVs that prowl our suburbs. The 2013 Ford Flex is unlike anything I’ve driven. Is it a great family mover? Yes, and so much more. The standard seating layout includes 1st-row bucket seats, 2nd-row 60/40 split bench seat and 3rd-row 50/50 split bench seat for seven-passenger seating.
The 2013 Ford Flex Limited I drove had a six-passenger configuration, with 2nd-row bucket seats, with optional center console complete with a refrigerator/freezer! Front row heated seats come standard in the Flex Limited, and something I really liked while driving the Flex in the Dallas heat, they now have an available cooling feature in those front seats as well!
Ford isn’t kidding when they say the 3.5L EcoBoost V6 Engine has the power of a V8. It’s incredibly responsive for such a large vehicle with no turbo lag when you step on the gas. I do have to say, if you are looking for a super high mpg car, Ford has a number of better choices; the Flex I drove yielded approximately 17 miles per gallon during mostly in-town driving.
As I mention in the video, my first impression of the Flex when I saw it on the road a few years ago was, well, it’s kinda boxy. Since then, the looks have really grown on me. This is not your mommy’s minivan! I’d even go so far as to call the Flex rather sexy. Hey, I’m a guy; we care about stuff like that. At least I do. And we guys also like our technology…
The 2013 Ford Flex I drove was equipped with a Navigation System that provided voice-guided turn-by-turn directions. The SiriusXM satellite radio was paired with a Sony audio system that pushed out 390 watts of power, including a rear sub-woofer! Upon entering, it also synched my iPhone via Bluetooth allowing me to place calls and select music with voice commands.
Visibility out of the Flex with its large windows all around was quite good. The one I drove also had a feature I think should be standard in all large vehicles; it had a rear-view camera that came on automatically when I put the car in reverse (see the video) that could literally be a life saver. Hate parallel parking? The Flex’s active parking assist will make that a snap. Very cool indeed.
Let me wrap up by saying the category defying 2013 Ford Flex is one super family mover. If you’ve been thinking of buying another minivan or SUV you owe it to yourself to give the Flex a test drive. I expect that you, like me, will come away quite impressed with the quality, comfort and flexibility of this great family vehicle.
What do you drive or recommend for a family car?
Note: Ford was kind enough to let me spend a week test driving this car. I was not compensated for this post, and the opinions are solely my own.
My husband wants one of these so bad!!!! Thanks for the review.
I don’t blame him. It is not only a very practical family car, but it looks great, is super flexible (as the name implies) and is genuinely fun to drive.
A sexy Flex – what more could you ask for?
I have a 2005 Ford Freestyle that they don’t make anymore, it’s served us well the last seven years. I think I may have to test drive the Flex – I’ve liked the look since they came out. Great review boxy to foxy!
What more could you ask for? Hmmm… maybe a built in coffee bar? Cute comment, Amy. Thanks so much for stopping by our humble little home on the web. I think you’d enjoy the Flex. Definitely give it a test drive and let me know what you think.
We OWN a 2009 Ford Flex and LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE it! I have owned several cars in my lifetime and honestly this is the BEST MOMMY MOBILE I have ever owned! Prior to the flex I had a GMC Yukon – which I did like, however, putting two small children up into their carseats being 5’4″ was horrible. The Flex passenger leg room is AMAZING, my kids can actually climb into the car NO problems on their own or if I choose to lift them into their car seats I don’t have to climb up to do so. People if you are thinking of a mini van – test drive a mini van then test drive the flex…and bring you kids and car seats. You will LOVE it.
I get NOTHING from Ford either for my comments – I am just saying this is the best car I have ever owned as a mom to 5 KIDS – I have had a lot.
And…if my husband were commenting he would say: Ford was the only one who did not take the bale out. 🙂
Gosh tell us what you really think, Jennifer. 😉
I had a chance to spend some time with another brand’s 3-row SUV, and found the Flex much more to my liking. That low step-in threshold really made a HUGE difference when putting my daughter into a car seat in the Flex. It’s a struggle to get her into the seat in one of our much smaller cars, but as you say, no problem with the Flex. Also I love the visibility all of those big windows gives you when you’re driving. So many new vehicles have sacrificed safety for cool angled roof-lines and tiny back windows. Any readers who have not viewed the short video should give a quick look. And as Jennifer said, take one for a test drive.
I have to tell you, we’re about to buy one of these as well. At first, I hated it. I though the design was terrible and when I drove it – it left a lot to be desired. However, while in Atlanta for a family trip, we ended up with a Flex as our rental. On Monday, I declared how much I hated it. By Wednesday, it had grown on me. And, by Friday I was sold. Simply amazing.
Yeah, that happened to me, too, Jason. It grows on you rather quickly… and how handy was it for hauling around family, etc?
Thanks for sharing….is there alot of storage room behind the third row.
If you need room, this is a great car!
That is a pretty cool ride. It might just be the car of my dreams as of right now. It looks really sleek.
I really enjoyed driving it, O’Neil. I seem them on the road and think they look really great… love the ones with the contrasting white roofs, btw. Part of me wishes I still had it, though it is a bit large for my small family.
Looks like the car Homer Simpson designed in one episode…
Really. Must have missed that one. It definitely is different than most, but that difference comes with some very practical benefits.
Great website. My thanks for writing that. I will definitely come here to see what’s new and recommend my acquaintances about your writing.
Thank you so much. I hope you’re year has gotten off to a great start!
Great post. I’ve been looking for a post like this for a while! Great information, from a layman’s perspective. 🙂 Thank you and best of luck.
Thanks for dropping by, Kevin. BTW, there was a error in your site link and it didn’t work, so I removed it. Glad you found my post helpful.
First, I’d like to thank you for sharing your thoughts about the Ford Flex. I didn’t like the way the Flex didn’t look either. The more I look at it, the better it looks great 😀
I have a 9 year old and, a 1 1/2 year old and awaiting for a 3rd child. I was looking into getting a 2012 Ford Explorer until I found out that it’s not possible to access the 3rd row (for my 9 year old child) by folding the seat on the 2nd row with a car seat on it. And so, here I am looking into the Ford Flex. I am now at the point where I am questionning the following:
1- Provided that I opt for a 60/40 bench for the 2nd row; would there be way to have 2 car seats on the bigger section of the bench and having the smaller part empty?
Thanks for your visit and question. We only have one child right now, and the vehicle I reviewed had the 40/40 2nd row seats with the center refrigerator console. I’m not an expert, and do not work for Ford, so I’d consult the vehicle owners manual concerning the ability to safely mount two seats on the 60% part of the 60/40 split. See what they say about the latch system in the middle. I’ve heard the middle is safest, if it’s an option, but as I said, I’m not an expert. Were it me I’d get the 40/40 split WITHOUT the center console. Thus your 9 year old would have easy access to the 3rd row (between the two seats), and is presumably old enough to do his belt? This would give you easy access to your 1½ on one side and you can mount the rear facing on the other side, also easy access. I’ll write Ford to see if they have anything to add. Thanks again for dropping by!
You can play music in your car though almost any system, but if you want something that sounds amazing, you are going to want to spend a little cash to get it right. There are many car audio systems from which to choose, and what you need will depend on your budget and you car or truck. You may think it’s cool to have woofers in your trunk, but what if they fill up your entire trunk? For some people, they don’t care about trunk space; they just care about hearing what they want to hear out of car audio systems.’
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