Ford Motor Company redefines the modern American family journey with the introduction of the 2009 Ford Flex, a full-size crossover that sets a new standard for style, features, functionality and comfort in the U.S. industry's hottest segment.

"The new Ford Flex crossover is a game-changer. It's the first vehicle of its kind that combines seating for seven, interior spaciousness and surprising features with a striking design that looks great on the road and at home for today's modern American families," said Mark Fields, Ford's president of The Americas, as he revealed the new vehicle at the 2007 New York International Auto Show. "The Flex builds on Ford's leadership in crossover vehicles, which is the fastest-growing part of the auto market today."

On sale in the summer of 2008, the Flex is arriving as crossovers continue to outpace even the remarkable growth of SUVs during the 1990s and minivans of the 1980s.

Last year, crossovers surpassed traditional SUV sales for the first time, and they are trending toward annual crossover sales of 3 million units by the end of the decade. Such growth likely will make crossovers the first or second largest vehicle segment in the U.S.

"Flex is another example of Ford creating more of the products that our customers really want," Fields said. "Ford intends to define crossover vehicles this decade just as we did SUVs in the 1990s."

The Flex joins the Edge and Taurus X in Ford's expanding crossover lineup. Ford's success with crossover utility vehicles is substantial. In March alone, the company's U.S. crossoversales were up more than 40 percent over last year - led by the success of the new Edge.

Redefining the Family Journey
Bold, expressive design and exclusive innovations define the new Flex.

"The Ford Flex has the power to move people emotionally as well as physically," said J Mays, Ford's group vice president of Design and chief creative officer.

"This crossover has been created for people who know it's the journey - not the destination - that matters most," Mays added. "Its upright, upscale design, versatility and clever touches allow Ford Flex to stand out in an increasingly crowded sea of crossovers."

The Ford Flex brings to production the Ford Fairlane concept vehicle that turned heads at the 2005 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

"Flex is following in the tire tracks, so to speak, of Ford vehicles like the Taurus, Explorer and Mustang. It's the next iconic Ford," said Peter Horbury, Ford's executive director of Design for The Americas. "It shatters today's image of people movers."