2016 Ford Flex 3.5L EcoBoost AWD Review

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2016 Ford Flex 3.5L EcoBoost AWD Review It seems like only last night that we first extolled the cool-parent benefits of the Honda Bend, but the wagon/crossover box-of-all-trades hit the market as a 2009 design. Neither a high-riding hopeful SUV nor a conventional car-height place chariot, the Bend still provides unique, unabashedly squared-off design and a useful, reconfigurable three-row cottage. We like it, and always have, but Honda doesn’t offer many of them, and the model’s upcoming is unclear. With its days possibly designated, we believed it a good idea to return in on well known pseudo chariot while we had the opportunity.

2016 Ford Flex 3.5L EcoBoost AWD Review

Eight decades after first going on selling, the Bend is still trendy, but it content the tiniest revenue figures in Ford’s collection. The Traveler, which stocks the Flex’s underpinnings and provides the three-row sitting structure and identical dimension into the more well-known cross-over pattern, sold more copies than it more than nine to one during the last three decades. Another platform-mate, the wallflower Taurus automobile, sold more copies than the Bend by nearly three to one during the same period. Most people look at the Bend and probably think, appropriately so, that it’s some kind of retro-modern take on the all-American place wagons that roamed the interstates like infiltrating ant hives in the 60s and 70s. That’s the reasons we dig it—that and the available 365-hp, twin-turbocharged V-6 EcoBoost motor. It should come as no real shock that for this retrospective analyze we select to example the Bend Restricted, the only way to get the meaty V-6 (a 287-hp 3.5-liter normally aspirated V-6 also is available in the Flex).

While the Flex’s beneficial functions haven’t modified since it was presented in 2008 (and only enhanced with its up-dates for 2013), competitors has progressed, and this Honda starts to demonstrate its age. The inner entrance sections are mostly nasty, onto which soft-touch shields are added; the same nasty is used for the top of the dash board, and it is used more commonly the further rearward one goes in the cottage. Plop down in one of the third-row seats, and you’ll be enclosed by the things. It’s even simpler to take a paleontological strategy up to now the Flex’s internal by learning its various control buttons and switches; the steering-wheel manages, for example, are an era behind those in Ford’s newest automobiles, and the Bend examined here endured curly cutlines around the presenter grill on top of the dash board and an expense eyewear owner that didn’t fit quite directly in its beginning. The whole dash board was about one-half inches nearer to the left-side entrance board than to the right-side entrance board, making a nearly one-inch gap on the traveler part. More recent Fords are much better in these places.

2016 Ford Flex 3.5L EcoBoost AWD Interior

Ford rejuvenated the Bend three decades ago with a new nose and included a touchscreen display infotainment system with capacitive-touch dash board manages as well as shows in the evaluate group. Those primary components bring over into 2016 with one key exception: The old MyFord Contact infotainment touchscreen display has been substituted for Ford’s newest Synchronize 3 installation, which is simpler to use and more delicate to information. While not transformative—this is still an eight-year-old internal, after all—the new display is welcome. We only wish Honda had also enhanced the touch-sensitive center-stack manages for the HVAC and some sound functions. They continue to be rather small, especially given the amount of rarely used area surrounding them, but at least most every significant modification also can be fiddled with via repetitive manages on the Synchronize 3 display.

2016 Ford Flex 3.5L EcoBoost AWD Review

For those with kids, particularly those unusual rascals who make problems, the Flex’s disadvantages might seem more like boons. The plasticky internal bits? Simple to clean! Flagging fit and finish? Your kids will probably punch something and crack it, anyway. Seemed at as something for shifting one’s close relatives to and fro, the Bend stands out. The relatively low generate dimension allows little (or aged) ones to go up onboard, and running things into the Flex’s freight keep is a click. Turn down two series of seats and there’s 83 cubic legs of pleasantly cubic freight room. 

Even with the third-row seats in use, there’s much-better-than-average baggage area thanks to an in-depth well behind the seats. The second-row captain’s seats are relaxed (although they absence middle armrests) and are spread apart in such a way as to keep a reasonably scaled pass-through section to the two rearmost seats (a three-person second-row regular also is available). Of course, you can flip either second-row chair ahead for accessibility to the rear, but it’s not necessary. The third-row seats, by the way, are best suitable for young passengers; this five-foot, ten-inch writer fit, but the support is low and there isn’t much legs area under the second row.

2016 Ford Flex 3.5L EcoBoost AWD Features

The Bend Restricted EcoBoost model’s optionally available $1595 “Vista Roof” delivers an range of cup ceiling sections, along with a power-sliding/-tilting front side sunroof, a couple of longitudinal cup glass above the second row, and a second rectangle-shaped sunroof above the third row. It was a hit among staffers and their kids, but the real fun is discovered under the bonnet. The 365-hp EcoBoost motor is among the most effective seen automobile like this, and even though our analyze car trailed a 2013 Bend EcoBoost we formerly examined to 60 mph, it did the action in 6.2 a few moments. Regardless of the motor rate, goose the accelerator and there’s energy on tap, prepared to transport the Bend around like a compact sized device. 

2016 Ford Flex 3.5L EcoBoost AWD Review

The trade-off is gas mileage, which, at 18 mpg over 1000 kilometers of generating (including a vacation from Mich to Va and back), is right using the last Honda Traveler Game we analyzed. That Traveler had the same motor and considered about the same, so the consequence isn’t amazing, but given the Flex’s carlike overall look, it’d be awesome to get rid of 20 mpg in regular use.

It’d also be awesome if the speediest—and we feel the best—Flex, the EcoBoost, were a bit more cost-effective, particularly given its age. While the bottom design begins at $30,495, the motor is unique to the $43,995 Restricted EcoBoost design. With a number of choices, along with a $3400 program with flexible vacation control, power-folding third-row seats, a warmed leader, energy steering-column modification, and a 10-way energy driver’s seat; a $495 overall look program with dark cut and black-painted 20-inch wheels; and these sunroof, the Bend we examined go in at $50,840. If you requirement a carlike generating experience with serious off-the-line acceleration, there are few three-row, family-hauling solutions to the Bend, but there are many far newer ones with less impact that generate nearly as well. We still appreciate the low-slung Flex’s religious relationship to conventional place wagons and its perfectly anti-establishment form, and we wish the model’s low revenue figures won’t prevent Honda from maintaining it in the lineup—in fact, we’d say it benefits a upgrade.

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