Yep, Ford did a great job with the EcoBoost twin-turbo V-6. There's lots of power across the rev range, giving the Flex the ability to simply rocket out of entrance ramps and onto the freeway. Like Phil Floraday, I found myself taking full advantage of the Flex's capabilities and was weaving in and out of mid-evening freeway traffic. At 90 mph in top gear, you don't get much response if you mash the accelerator, but hit one of the shift paddles (which don't feel great to your fingertips, unfortunately), and the downshifts are immediate and produce almost violent forward thrust. This is definitely a people mover for mommies in a hurry. What also surprised me was how tractable the Flex EcoBoost is around town; throttle tip-in is just right, and the twin-turbo V-6 pours on lots of usable torque for the urban cut-and-thrust.
One jarring note for me was the driver's seat. Its fixed-position headrest is canted forward at a weird angle that pushes your head a bit too far forward and prevents you (or me, at least) from sinking fully against the seatback. Combine this with a steering wheel and column that I could never quite adjust to where I felt it needed to be, and I could never arrive at a truly satisfying driving position, no matter how much I adjusted the seatback, the seat bottom, and the headrest.
Joe DeMatio, Executive Editor