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2011 Ford Flex

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2011 Ford Flex Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 7.8

The 2011 Flex is Ford's answer to rivals such as the GMC Acadia and Honda Pilot. Designed to carry seven passengers, yet achieve the same kind of fuel economy as a mid-size sedan, the Flex is part of a growing trend away from V8-powered leviathans and toward more space efficient vehicles, particularly when towing is not a high priority. If all you need is room for the family, a minivan or mid-size SUV could certainly do the trick, but neither have the cutting-edge cool the square-as-a-shoebox Flex seems to ooze. You might even have to wrestle your teenagers for driving privileges – and why not? With room for lots of their friends, an optional built-in refrigerator and the technology-friendly SYNC audio system, the Flex can easily transform itself from family transport to Friday-night cruiser with just a turn of the ignition.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you've outgrown the need for your minivan, or you're just getting to the point where you think you might need one, the 2011 Ford Flex offers much of the same versatility in a package you'll be proud to show off to friends and co-workers.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you need a vehicle that can tow more than 4,500 pounds, the Ford Flex takes a back seat to its larger, V8-powered siblings, the Explorer and Expedition. Functionally, the Flex's third-row seat is not as roomy or easy to access as that of the Chevrolet Traverse.

What's New for 2011

For 2011, a new Titanium trim on the Ford Flex joins the SE, SEL and Limited. The Titanium is easily identified by its blacked out tail lamps, black chrome grille, black roof, black mirror caps, unique interior and 20-inch painted luster nickel wheels. Other 2011 Edge improvements include the addition of HD radio to the optional navigation package, and an available power folding third-row seat with reversible tailgate feature that allows the seat to face outward from the rear hatch.

Driving the Flex

Driving Impressions The Flex's ability to maneuver through tight turns is matched only by its well-mannered ride and hushed interior. Despite its boxy SUV appearance, the Flex is surprisingly nimble, providing quick...

turn-in response with little sway or body roll. At highway speeds, the Flex slices through the air impervious to the commotion its boxy shape should be causing. A generous helping of laminated glass keeps wind and road noise at bay, and the superb front seats never left us feeling fatigued or unsupported. Running the Flex through a few simulated emergency maneuvers proved Ford's AdvanceTrac stability and traction control system more than capable of keeping the Flex under control, and although we were not able to test it, the optional all-wheel drive is sure to add peace of mind when encountering slippery road conditions.

Rear-Console Refrigerator
The ideal option for long trips with the kids, the Ford Flex's rear-console refrigerator can hold up to seven 12-ounce cans. And, with a low of 23-degrees Fahrenheit, it can double as a mini ice cream cart.

SYNC Communications System
One of the best audio options in the industry, Ford's SYNC communications system features a voice-activated command center that can access music from an attached MP3 player, pick up and place calls from a Bluetooth-enabled cell phone and even speak incoming text messages.

2011 Ford Flex Details
2011 Ford Flex photo Interior

The interior is where the 2011 Ford Flex really shines over the competition. From its innovative features, including an available center-console refrigerator and massive four-panel Vista skylight, to the high-quality look and feel of its interior parts, the Flex excites the senses. Ford's extensive use of interior lighting adds a rich ambience at night and is complemented by such lavish details as the diamond sew pattern on the Limited trim's leather seats. Accommodations for front and second-row passengers are quite generous, but the third-row seat is short on legroom and the second and third-row seatbacks are a bit low, requiring taller passengers to fully extend the head restraints. Available power-adjustable pedals help any size driver feel comfortable behind the wheel. And, when not carrying human cargo, the Flex's front-passenger, second and third-row seats can be folded flat to create a massive level load floor.

Exterior
2011 Ford Flex photo

The Flex's modern exterior strikes a chord with so many people because it seems both familiar and new at the same time. The parallel groves running down its sides are a variation on the old wood-paneled wagons of the 60s and 70s, a design element that works in conjunction with the aluminum-plated rear hatch and optional contrasting roof paint. You can see subtle hints of Scion xB and MINI Cooper in the Flex's reflection, yet its boxy, upright sides and bold front end are pure Ford. The large wheels and low ground clearance may not be well-suited for off-road adventures, but they combine to give the Flex a very agreeable driving experience – and a just plain cool look.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The Flex comes in four trim levels: SE, SEL, Titanium and Limited. Standard equipment includes Ford's keypad keyless entry, a six-way power driver's seat, tilt/telescopic steering wheel, Reverse Sensing System, fog lamps, Easy Fuel capless fuel system, front and rear air conditioning, an MP3-compatible CD player and a leather-wrapped steering wheel with controls for cruise control and audio. Moving up to the top-of-the-line Limited and Titanium trims brings heated front seats, a 10-way power driver's seat with memory, Sony Premium audio with Ford SYNC communications system, voice-activated navigation, leather interior, a power rear liftgate, power folding third-row seat, dual-zone automatic climate control and 19-inch polished aluminum wheels (20-inch on the Titanium trim). Standard safety equipment on all models includes three-row side-curtain airbags and AdvanceTrac electronic stability and traction control with Roll Stability Control.

Optional Equipment

Options for the Ford Flex vary by trim and include a 355-horsepower EcoBoost V6 (SEL and Limited), rear backup camera, power rear liftgate, heated second-row seats with power Autofold mode, second-row captain's-chair seating with rear-console refrigerator, four-panel Vista roof, all-wheel drive, a contrasting painted top, remote start, a rear-seat DVD entertainment system and Park Assist active parallel parking aid.

Under the Hood

Ford currently offers two powertrain options for the Flex. The standard engine on all trims is a 3.5-liter V6 engine with variable valve timing attached to a six-speed automatic transmission. The smooth and efficient V6 generates a respectable 262 horsepower and 248 pound-feet of torque – not the best in class but certainly far from being tagged as anemic. Fuel economy, on the other hand, is near the top of its class, with an estimated 17 miles per gallon city and 24 highway. All-wheel-drive models earn slightly lower estimates. Optional on SEL, Titanium and Limited trims is the EcoBoost V6, which mates the 3.5-liter engine with gasoline direct injection and twin turbochargers to produce an impressive 355 horsepower. Ford claims the EcoBoost engine delivers V8-like performance with V6-like fuel economy, though at 16/21 mpg, the claim seems like a bit of a stretch. Flex's equipped with EcoBoost also feature all-wheel drive as standard equipment.

3.5-liter V6
262 horsepower @ 6250 rpm
248 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/24 (FWD), 16/22 (AWD)

3.5-liter V6, Twin-Turbocharged
355 horsepower @ 5700 rpm
350 lb.-ft. of torque @ 1500-5250 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/21

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2011 Ford Flex Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.2
Out of 10

Based on 230 Ratings for the 2009 - 2016 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.1/10
    Quality
    9.2/10
  • Reliability
    9.4/10
    Performance
    9.3/10
  • Comfort
    9.5/10
    Styling
    9.4/10

Great car

By on Friday, January 22, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 59,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "high quality interior,easy to get in and out of"

Cons: "gas mileage,small gas tank"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Ibought this car it was A lease vehicle.We have had no issues with it.awesome in the winter has been reliable very high quality interior and ext. Gas mileage is not very good needs a bigger gas tank and getting in and out of the 3rd row seats is A challenge but other than that it is an awesome vehicle."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

love this vehicle

By on Friday, December 04, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 90,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "once in, everyone loves this vehicle"

Cons: "repairs can be expensive"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"The vehicle came from Tennessee and has only see 1 Michigan winter. The vehicle is the turbo with Eco-boost and is so loaded it even has a second row refrigerator."

19 people out of 33 found this review helpful

Excellent crossover. Only lacks arm rests.

By on Tuesday, December 01, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 50,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "All positive items .fun..efficient...good value"

Cons: "No arm rests ..a bit of sway in rear"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"Great cabin. Second row would be better with arm rests..generous seats allow movement of passenger due to basic size of car . Huge cargo capacity. Excellent fit and finish. As personal matter I would prefer some upgraded sound systems ....like Bose. Got this early in the game and was surprised by the number of strangers who asked "what it was?" And "how do you like it?". Has now caught on in the South East because of quality/price value."

3 people out of 4 found this review helpful

2ND FLEX OWNED, LOOKING TO GET 3RD!

By on Saturday, November 07, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 41,400

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "VERY ROOMY WITH LOTS OF CARGO SPACE"

Cons: "NOTHING"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"THIS IS MY SECOND FLEX, HAD A 2010, NOW 2013, AND LOOKING TO PURCHASES A 2015! RECENTLY FOUND OUT IT APPEARS FORD WILL STOP MAKING THESE AFTER 2015. LOVE THE ROOM THIS CAR HAS, LOW TO THE GROUND SO MY 81 YR OLD MOM HAS NO PROBLEM GETTING IN OR OUT.I CAN HAUL SO MUCH IN THIS VEHICLE. DRIVES AND HANDLES LIKA A DREAM.FITS THE GRANDKIDS WITH NO PROBLEMS.LOTS OF LEG ROOM. I HAVEN'T FOUND A SINGLE THING I DIDN'T LIKE ABOUT MY FLEX!"

9 people out of 18 found this review helpful

A Complete and Versatile Vehicle

By on Monday, November 02, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 47,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Great all-around car"

Cons: "Expensive to by brand new"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"My 2013 Flex has to be one of the best vehicle purchases I've made. And here's why: >Interior. Roomy and comfortable for the driver and passengers. Third row seat is easily accessible and useable by adults. Materials are upscale and pleasant to look at and touch. Vista roof opens up the cabin. Controls are easy to use and ergonomically designed. Dials and guages are easy to read and adjustable. I actually like the Sync with MyFord Touch system. The touchscreen was a little sluggish, but a recent software upgrade fixed that. Technology that comes in handy:rear camera, rear back-up sensor, and adaptive cruise control. The collision warning and park assist are gimmicky, in my opinion. >Exterior. I find it to be a handsome car with nice lines. The 20" polished wheels and chrome exhaust tips are nice touch. You definitely will stand out and won't be mistaken for any other vehicle! >Powertrain. The twin-turbo V6 delivers big, smooth power. The AWD system inspires confidence. The transmission has an available "Sport" mode which gives quciker shifts and holds gears. At the stop light and on the highway, not many vehicles can match the Flex's performance. >Summary. The Flex has it all: it is a sports car, luxury car, and SUV all rolled into one."

2 people out of 2 found this review helpful

Ford Flex delivers the "Goods" !

By on Friday, October 30, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 110,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Great price , excellent family vehicle"

Cons: "Gas mileage"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

Comfort and Style under one hood!

"We purchased this pre- owned vehicle as a "compromise" between our truck and car needs. My husband wanted a vehicle to make trips to Lowes/Home Depot, while I wanted a comfortable, luxury car for our family. This is an excellent vehicle that meets all of our criteria and more. It has a lot of cargo room to carry sheet rock, or drive a wedding party around on their special day! I have helped a stranger bring a chair to her house from Home Goods, after seeing her attempt to fit in her small coupe. I have helped a friend pick up a new twin bed and deliver to her home. We have taken family trips in our Flex. It is extremely comfortable and provides a quiet and smooth ride. It handles well on turns and/or on bumpy dirt roads when needed. We have used this as a commuter vehicle, so most of "our" miles are highway miles."

5 people out of 6 found this review helpful

Comfort and Style under one hood!

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