Sunday, September 21, 2008

Flex time!

Thanks to Ford Canada and Social Media Group, I was asked if I wanted to take a Ford Flex for a spin. It’s Ford’s answer to the minivan since they stopped manufacturing the Freestar a couple years ago and it’s made at their Oakville plant.

I’m no soccer mom but I wanted to test it out around the ’hood with my family in tow. I’m a minivan driver so I think I have a pretty good point of reference. The kids loved it because of the features we don’t have in our van. Mr. B. enjoyed his test drive too. I even liked the two-tone Light Ice Blue Metallic with White Suede roof colour and as Mr. B. will tell you, I usually have an aversion to blue cars. Don’t know why, I just do.

I also thought it would be a lot of fun to fill it up with some podcampers and take it to PodCamp Montreal. Joining me for the ride were Connie Crosby, Lily Mills, Jay Moonah, Daniele Rossi and Brent Morris.

The Flex is spacious and with six leather captain seats, built in DVD player, SIRIUS satellite radio and four sunroofs, it’s a more luxurious vehicle I’m used to driving.

We had a very comfortable ride but found parking and turning such a long and wide cross-over vehicle more challenging. As you can see below, at 201.8" in length, it’s somewhat long for a standard parking spot. Cool thing is, when you’re backing up and getting too close to an object behind you, an audio signal lets you know.

Seats in the middle and back rows can easily be turned down for extra storage. When all seats are in the upright position, storage isn’t as generous as I would have thought for the wide Flex design. We managed to fit all our our overnight luggage in the back.

The electrical outlet was a bonus for us geeks ’cause we could use our laptops without wearing out the batteries.
One of the cool features we wanted to check out was the “fridge”. We had planned to bring a special lunch with us instead of stopping at a fast-food place on the highway. Needless to say, although having a small fridge compartment is a great bonus for keeping snacks and drinks cold for the kids, it was smaller than we expected and not large enough to hold our lunches.

According to Ford Canada the Flex starts at $34,999 and the model I previewed retails at $44,229.

Read more about Flex features.

Photo credit: photos of me and the electrical outlet are courtesy of Connie Crosby. UPDATE: Connie also took the photo of the Flex in the parking lot.

14 comments:

  1. I liked your review - seemed thorough and objective, not just singing their praises because you got to drive it for free. I love the colour!

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  2. Tinku, Your comment means so much to me. As a blogger, it's so important for me to remain objective whether or not I'm writing about something given/loaned to me or something I've purchased on my own.

    Thanks,
    Eden

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  3. What impressed me was the extra seat adjustment for your lower back!

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  4. Definitely Daniele! When you turn on the ignition, the driver's seat automagically gets into position (provided it's preset for an individual driver.)

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  5. Eden, it was so apropos with our blogger/PR relationship panel that you took a Ford Flex for a spin with other bloggers/podcasters to come to Montreal. BTW, you answered very well on the panel.

    I am glad that we met again. PodCamp MTL passed so quickly.
    Cheers,
    Kim

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  6. Kim, It was great seeing you again at PodCamp Montreal. I'm always learning so much from you. I wish Saturday didn't go by so quickly.

    You were wonderful on the panel. As you know, I would have mentioned the Flex during our session had there been an opportunity. I was quite open about it being loaned to me for a preview.

    Cheers,
    Eden

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  7. Nice write-up! I liked that I actually had half decent leg room in the back, back seat, and could also easily hear everyone in the car, even in the front seat.

    I didn't like having to climb over the second set of seats (with the seat folded down) to get to the third set of seats. I understand there was another way to get in, though. While those far back seats fit adults, I expect it will mostly be kids using them.

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  8. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  9. Interesting review. The space factor information is very valuable to families.

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  10. Eden you almost make us want to buy a minivan! The list of features is impressive but the "coolest" one is the fridge ;0)

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  11. Mr. B3:44 pm

    Nice ride but suited more for the 'burbs than city driving.

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  12. parent club, I couldn't agree with you more, yet there was a time when families didn't have minivans or SUVs and managed just fine.

    Sylvain, haha! Thanks for leaving your first comment.

    Mr. B. Wow! I've been blogging two years this week and this is your first comment. Thanks for sharing your opinion. Our urban street is a bit too narrow and tight on parking space for a big crossover like the Flex.

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  13. I took notes of our conversation driving up to Montreal. It's a little game I've been playing since I was a kid, filling in crossword puzzles with words I hear from conversations around me.

    You can check them out at Flickr. Numbers 1-4 are all from the trip to Montreal.

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  14. Lily, I love it! What a cool idea. And here I thought you were sitting quietly in the backseat and keeping to yourself. ;-) Thanks for sharing our crossword conversations with everyone here at Bargainista.

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