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Flexing to Vegas

A few weeks ago our family planned a quick holiday road trip to Las Vegas, and we had the wonderful opportunity to test drive the new 2013 Ford Flex for our trip.  With a family of five and a six-hour drive ahead, we planned to find out what this beauty could do for us.flex collage 1

This is not your uncle’s old station wagon.  The Flex looks and acts like a muscle car, but has all the comforts and technology that a family would wish for.  Oh, and check out those rims!

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The sleek and unique looking front end will not be mistaken for a minivan, SUV or crossover that so many people have.  This fully-equipped Limited version had every feature we could ask for including but NOT “limited” to: power operated heated (and cooled) seats, touch-screen and voice activated SYNC with MyFord Touch (entertainment, climate control, rear-view camera, and navigation system), power rear folding seats and tailgate, push-button start, and even an active park assist mode.

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My daughter was ready to check out the driver’s seat before we loaded the first bag.  She looked so comfortable in the leather seats.  The interior is made with all sustainable materials: which looks and feels plush but durable, and quite appealing to the eyes.  They use soy-based foam, recycled plastic in the seat fabric, and other bio-materials in the body parts.  It’s nice to see a family car with so much style and still have responsibility to the environment.

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 There was no worry about the interior space for the 5 of us.  Our daughter’s car seat fit with plenty of room for more storage in front on the floor, and easy access to get in and out.

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Next it was time to start loading the mountain of luggage.  We can never seem to pack lightly for even a 3-day trip!  But the power buttons made it quite convenient to get started loading in the rear.  We removed the storage net for maximum capacity and got the seats moving.

fex collage5It was fun to watch the power rear seats folding separately in-action. We couldn’t believe how quiet it was!

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And finally…the mountain of bags fit nicely (stroller not shown)!

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 At last, we hit the open road.  We had the AWD (All Wheel Drive) model; the acceleration and handling were flawless.  The climb from Southern, California up to the high desert reaches over 4000 feet elevation, and the hills felt like flat lands.  Best of all, everyone had plenty of room in the car for comfort.

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Once on our way, we were eager to check out the technology features.  This version included a blind-spot monitoring system which is normally only available in expensive luxury cars (although this Flex felt like every bit of a luxury car).  The yellow light signals whenever another vehicle is in your blind spot, and warning sounds occur if you signal to move into that lane.  It’s an excellent helper for long drives with a big car like this, and gives you peace of mind with all those other crazy drivers on the road.

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 As we cruised through the desert, we really appreciated the use of the MyFord Touch system.  It had HD Radio, SiriusXM Satellite radio (with Traffic and TravelLink – for traffic re-routing and weather forecasts, etc.), and we could stream music via Blue tooth through our iPhones (from our music library or Pandora).  The GPS had voice-activation and my 10-year-old son kept asking us to change modes so he could “back seat drive” the MyFord Touch! He would ask us to pick a Satellite radio station, see how much longer we had to drive, check the weather in Vegas, etc. flex16

The drive was long but the car’s features and the desert “landmarks” helped us pass the time. Our 6-year-old son also loves to sleep, especially in the car and the Flex  did not disappoint him. He was very comfortable the entire time.

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 Once in Las Vegas, we heard so many complements about the looks of the car.  Everyone from the valet drivers to people passing by would look and say how nice the car was.  The rims stood out to impress, and of course the sleek look of a large car with a low height is unique.

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 In addition, the MyFord Touch screen was so large and colorful, and the GPS amazed us around the Las Vegas Strip with its computer generated drawings of the giant local hotels.

The ride home was just as fun and relaxing and we kept ourselves busy with all the exciting features and a smooth ride.  It was the best family road trip we can remember and we hope to see ourselves owning one of these spectacular vehicles someday!

Disclaimer: We were provided with the Flex for a complimentary week long test. Gas was not included. All opinions are our own.

 

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