Ford Flex SEL
An exercise in updating the 1939 Ford Woody, the Flex enters its sophomore year in 2010.
Seating: Seating up to seven, the cabin is roomy and comfortable.
Cargo: At 20 cubic feet, cargo space is tight with all three rows of seats in place, however, folding the third-row seat flat increases that space to 43.2 cubic feet, and folding down the second-row seat expands cargo room to 83.2 cubic feet. When open, the lift gate provides protection from the elements. A power function on the second-row seat moves it forward, easing access to the third row.
Convenience: The SEL comes standard with auxiliary 12-volt outlets in the front, rear and cargo area. Opt for the $1,000 206A Rapid Spec Package and not only do you get power-adjustable pedals, but a power liftgate and a 110-volt inverter for powering accessories on a household current (think blender). The standard audio system is a six-speaker unit with an in-dash six-disc CD player and auxiliary input jack.
Features: The front-wheel-drive SEL comes with a 262-horsepower 3.5-liter V-6 mated to a six-speed driver-shiftable automatic transmission. There is also the SEL with EcoBoost that makes it a 355-horsepower with a twin-turbocharged V-6. It too uses the six-speed driver-shiftable transmission, but delivers power to all four wheels.
Price: $32,100 for the for the 3.5-liter V-6; $36,945 for the turbocharged version.