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Old 01-17-2013, 11:35 AM   #1
TheNinja
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Default Ford Flex is growing on me - Enters my vehicle search as a dark horse

You know....at first I thought it was the ugliest most un-useful vehicle I've ever seen. Now....that quirky bastard is growing on me. I am still in the market for a used SUV/minivan (around $20k budget if possible).

Started with Yukon, Tahoe, Highlander, Odyssey, Sienna, Pilot, Traverse, Acadia, Sequoia

Narrowed down to: Pilot, Odyssey, Sequioa - Favorites in each category of medium SUV, minivan, and large SUV.

Dark Horse Ford Flex just entered the race. It seems to have the most interior room while still have decent fuel economy.
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Old 01-17-2013, 01:01 PM   #2
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I would highly suggest looking at Grand Caravan. You can get a new one for little over 20k.

Guessing Flex at 20k woudl be used....

New vs Used (you know which one always wins).

You can't really go wrong with Caravan/minivan when it comes to moving people (especially kids)
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Old 01-17-2013, 01:50 PM   #3
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I just bought a Flex on the 15th. I love it, as you said it has a ton of room and its not a darn minivan. Good gas so far and my wife and kids love all of the features it has. I got a 2010 SEL with Leather, wood trim, and the power package right @ 20K. CarMax oddly enough seems to have a hoard of them.. at least around me anyway. Not an easy to find car as many would think. I got mine at a local ford dealership it was CPO.
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Old 01-17-2013, 02:14 PM   #4
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I really like them. My wife hated them. Even more than a minivan. Which means that she *REALLY* hated them. Front seats in the leather trim are like a luxury recliner, and the 2nd row with the captains chairs is fantastic as well. Good space behind the 2nd row, but make no mistake...it's not as cavernous as a minivan.
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Old 01-18-2013, 11:45 AM   #5
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it's a very nice minivan, best ford has ever put out. cheaper and more engine choices than the explorer, which is pretty much the same thing (well, used to have more engine choices, did the explorer ever get the turbo 6?). the lambdas are also nice minivans. pilot is little cramped for a minivan.
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Old 01-18-2013, 11:57 AM   #6
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TN - guess you are looking for a third row? If not, I'd suggest the EDGE over it, or even a used (newer) Explorer. Just personal tastes though.
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:17 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ElFenix View Post
it's a very nice minivan, best ford has ever put out. cheaper and more engine choices than the explorer, which is pretty much the same thing (well, used to have more engine choices, did the explorer ever get the turbo 6?). the lambdas are also nice minivans. pilot is little cramped for a minivan.
http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/...rt-test-review
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:20 PM   #8
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they grew on me too. i like the idea of 3rd row seating, but i also like the idea of awd and the cargo space if i sell my truck and need the space.
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Old 01-18-2013, 07:13 PM   #9
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The Flex is not a pretty vehicle by any stretch. It's a minivan though it's probably the nicest minivan I've ever driven. It's closer to a Lincoln than it is a vanilla Ford. I highly recommend opting for the leather trim if you can afford it. Makes it like you're driving around in your living room. Handling is very smooth, thanks to its lower centre of gravity.
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Old 01-18-2013, 08:10 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheNinja View Post
You know....at first I thought it was the ugliest most un-useful vehicle I've ever seen. Now....that quirky bastard is growing on me. I am still in the market for a used SUV/minivan (around $20k budget if possible).

Started with Yukon, Tahoe, Highlander, Odyssey, Sienna, Pilot, Traverse, Acadia, Sequoia

Narrowed down to: Pilot, Odyssey, Sequioa - Favorites in each category of medium SUV, minivan, and large SUV.

Dark Horse Ford Flex just entered the race. It seems to have the most interior room while still have decent fuel economy.
I agree. Ford is genius IMO. They took an innovative new concept from the Japanese (sporty-cool looking box-shaped vehicle (Scion xB 1st gen), and applied American intuition to find what Americans really wanted out of that vehicle-- something LARGER.

It's large and imposing and very classy IMO.
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Old 01-19-2013, 01:15 PM   #11
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I always thought it would look pretty awesome if it was just a foot shorter... but then it looks like a rover.


Heres an image I chopped for example.

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Old 01-19-2013, 01:58 PM   #12
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Always loved you can get them with the 3.5l ecoboost. Tune that sucker and damn they are fast!

If I ever needed a vehicle like this I'd snatch one up in a heartbeat, heck if I had quite a bit of extra money sitting around I'd probably get one and mod it up just because I think they are cool.
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Old 01-19-2013, 03:09 PM   #13
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I like the flex a lot. It's another one of those 'too functional/makes too much sense to be popular' vehicles like the Mazda5.

It's basically the closest thing to a station wagon that any domestic manufacturer is making (AFAIK; might be a couple cars with a wagon version I don't know about...No, the CTS does not come in 'wagon;' it comes in 'hatch')

If you want a very comfortable SUV with lots of space for passengers and cargo, and are able to admit that you will never take a high, 4WD one off-road (and/or that 2WD SUV's are useless), the Flex is probably for you. Only other non-SUV's (per the 'car that sits too high' definition) with similar abilities would probably be be minivans. Or the aforementioned Mazda; the mini-minivan.
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Old 01-22-2013, 03:48 PM   #14
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To answer some previous questions

Yes I need 3rd row seating but only have 2 kids right now. However they are getting to ages where they have friends, sports games, etc.

I also want 4wd/awd but in all honesty have probably used/needed it on my truck like 4 times in 6 years. I'd be trading my truck for this suv/minivan. If I needed 4wd/awd it would just be on paved roads that require snow chains in winter 1-2x a year as kids get older.

I want leather and a DVD player.

I was leaning towards the Pilot but I believe the Flex has more interior room.

I like Sequioa but I believe Flex handles much better (like a car) and gets better mileage.

I'm not a mini-van type of guy.
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Old 01-22-2013, 04:05 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phucheneh View Post
I like the flex a lot. It's another one of those 'too functional/makes too much sense to be popular' vehicles like the Mazda5.

It's basically the closest thing to a station wagon that any domestic manufacturer is making (AFAIK; might be a couple cars with a wagon version I don't know about...No, the CTS does not come in 'wagon;' it comes in 'hatch')

If you want a very comfortable SUV with lots of space for passengers and cargo, and are able to admit that you will never take a high, 4WD one off-road (and/or that 2WD SUV's are useless), the Flex is probably for you. Only other non-SUV's (per the 'car that sits too high' definition) with similar abilities would probably be be minivans. Or the aforementioned Mazda; the mini-minivan.
CTS V is a wagon damnit!

I think ford quit with all their wagons with like the second gen focus. dodge quit after the magnum, chevy with the malibu max which was to short to be useful(it was truly a hatchback IMO not a wagon)

and 2wd SUVs are not useless. a nice truck based one will tow the hell out of anything and 2wd is preferred for most towing situation

I dont have hard #'s but having been almost back to back in a loaded up pilot and flex, the flex FELT less cramped with 7 adult males in it, than the pilot

the only reason we worked in the pilot is that me and another guy are only 5' 8" and it was still tight
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Old 01-22-2013, 04:12 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheNinja View Post
To answer some previous questions

Yes I need 3rd row seating but only have 2 kids right now. However they are getting to ages where they have friends, sports games, etc.

I also want 4wd/awd but in all honesty have probably used/needed it on my truck like 4 times in 6 years. I'd be trading my truck for this suv/minivan. If I needed 4wd/awd it would just be on paved roads that require snow chains in winter 1-2x a year as kids get older.

I want leather and a DVD player.

I was leaning towards the Pilot but I believe the Flex has more interior room.

I like Sequioa but I believe Flex handles much better (like a car) and gets better mileage.

I'm not a mini-van type of guy.

Have a look at the Dodge Journey 3.6L AWD as well. It's a bit smaller than the Flex and has an outstanding engine/trans combo with a completely revised interior starting in 2011. Seating for 6/7.

http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/...journey-review
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Old 01-22-2013, 04:18 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheNinja View Post
To answer some previous questions

Yes I need 3rd row seating but only have 2 kids right now. However they are getting to ages where they have friends, sports games, etc.

I also want 4wd/awd but in all honesty have probably used/needed it on my truck like 4 times in 6 years. I'd be trading my truck for this suv/minivan. If I needed 4wd/awd it would just be on paved roads that require snow chains in winter 1-2x a year as kids get older.

I want leather and a DVD player.

I was leaning towards the Pilot but I believe the Flex has more interior room.

I like Sequioa but I believe Flex handles much better (like a car) and gets better mileage.

I'm not a mini-van type of guy.
Sliding doors is what makes a very easy access for kids AND parents. That's something no SUV will be able to do (especially if YOU are bucking up kids etc).

Also as much hate as there is with Minivans....there is MORE when it comes to SUVs. (if you care about what people think).

Personally, you will NEVER EVER find a better people mover than a minivan. Also Minivans are probably the best bang for the buck vehicles on the market.
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Old 01-22-2013, 05:08 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zargon View Post
CTS V is a wagon damnit!

I think ford quit with all their wagons with like the second gen focus. dodge quit after the magnum, chevy with the malibu max which was to short to be useful(it was truly a hatchback IMO not a wagon)

and 2wd SUVs are not useless. a nice truck based one will tow the hell out of anything and 2wd is preferred for most towing situation
When I said 2WD, I was thinking more of FWD-based models. Also, off-road use. A 2WD SUV with high towing capabilities is useful indeed, but it's not because of the aesthetic 'SUV' characteristics- that was more my point. What I dislike about SUV's is the 'enormous, high-up box on wheels' characteristic.

The Flex is kinda the inverse. Compare it to, say, a Suburban (or other traditional big-ass GM SUV [edit: or Excursion/Expedition, not just hating GM here]), and I think it utilizes space a lot better (still boxy, but smaller) and is obviously a lot lower to the ground.
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Old 01-23-2013, 09:55 AM   #19
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Had 5 adults and 5 sets of hockey equipment in my flex last night including goalie equipment. Was to the roof but we were all comfortable
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Old 01-23-2013, 11:34 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zargon View Post
CTS V is a wagon damnit!

I think ford quit with all their wagons with like the second gen focus. dodge quit after the magnum, chevy with the malibu max which was to short to be useful(it was truly a hatchback IMO not a wagon)

and 2wd SUVs are not useless. a nice truck based one will tow the hell out of anything and 2wd is preferred for most towing situation

I dont have hard #'s but having been almost back to back in a loaded up pilot and flex, the flex FELT less cramped with 7 adult males in it, than the pilot

the only reason we worked in the pilot is that me and another guy are only 5' 8" and it was still tight
I'm 6'1" and most of the people I hang out with and come to visit from out of town are fairly tall people (Dutch heritage). I have a feeling the Pilot is great for my day to day needs of 2 adults and 2 young kids and just put the 3rd row down. But the Flex would be better for when I really need the 3rd row. I looked at the Highlander btw and the 3rd row was basically unusable unless you are 5'5" or less IMO.

I might be talking myself into a Flex, but I gotta go drive a couple vehicles first so I can narrow my search.

The Journey seems interesting as well. Very nice price on it.

I'm looking for a 2-3 year old used one. I never buy new b/c I don't like to take the depreciation and I usually don't finance a vehicle so the whole 0.9% rates don't help me vs a used car. I might finance part of this one though.
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Old 01-23-2013, 11:49 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phucheneh View Post
When I said 2WD, I was thinking more of FWD-based models. Also, off-road use. A 2WD SUV with high towing capabilities is useful indeed, but it's not because of the aesthetic 'SUV' characteristics- that was more my point. What I dislike about SUV's is the 'enormous, high-up box on wheels' characteristic.

The Flex is kinda the inverse. Compare it to, say, a Suburban (or other traditional big-ass GM SUV [edit: or Excursion/Expedition, not just hating GM here]), and I think it utilizes space a lot better (still boxy, but smaller) and is obviously a lot lower to the ground.
I can agree with all this.
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