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8.3

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 8.9
Performance: 7.8
Interior: 8.1
Total Cost of Ownership: 8.4
Safety: 9.7
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2012 Ford Flex Review

Reviewers were impressed with the 2012 Ford Flex's compliant ride, adult-friendly third row and powerful EcoBoost V6 engine.

Pros & Cons

  • Powerful EcoBoost engine
  • Adult-friendly third row
  • Transmission hesitant to downshift

2012 Ford Flex Overview

The 2012 Flex has a standard V6 engine that reviewers said delivers sufficient acceleration from a stop and on the highway. A more powerful turbocharged EcoBoost V6 is available, and reviewers said that this engine provides ample power and makes the Flex more fun to drive. Some critics complained that the standard six-speed automatic can be reluctant to downshift for more power unless you floor the throttle. The 2012 Flex is rated at up to an EPA-estimated 17/24 mpg city/highway, which is comparable to what other three-row SUVs get. Auto journalists said the Flex's ride is generally compliant over rough roads, and most agreed that the Flex has composed handling for the class, as well as accurate steering. Some reviewers found the Flex fairly easy to maneuver in parking lots and other tight spaces, while others said its large size makes it a bit cumbersome.

Test drivers said the 2012 Ford Flex's interior has a clean appearance, though some critics noted that some low-quality plastics are peppered in with the higher-quality materials. The front seats earned praise for their comfort, and reviewers added that the middle row's available bucket seats are more comfortable and supportive than the bench seat, though keep in mind that the bucket seats reduces seating capacity to six people. The third row of seats was praised for its adult-friendly space, which is a rare compliment in this class. The 2012 Flex comes standard with rear parking sensors and a six-speaker stereo system. Dual-zone automatic climate control, a rearview camera, navigation and Ford's voice-activated SYNC system with Bluetooth and a USB port are available. The Flex has 83.2 cubic feet of cargo capacity, which is typical for a three-row SUV, but not class-leading.

Other SUVs to Consider

The 2012 Dodge Durango has an available V8 engine that reviewers said provides plenty of power. Reviewers also liked the Durango's nimble handling and quality interior.

With its base engine, the 2012 Toyota Highlander gets good fuel economy for the class, and it has more cargo space than the Flex. Test drivers said the Highlander is easy to maneuver and offers a comfortable ride.

Compare the Flex, Durango and Highlander »

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