really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
53,834 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2011 Ford Flex engine problems

engine problem

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2011 Ford Flex Owner Comments

problem #9

Dec 262016


  • 62,000 miles


Shuttered at highway speed. Both turbochargers on the ecoboost engine are destroyed at 62,000 miles. Metal shavings in the oil filter clogged oil lines. Most likely engine destroyed.

- Ashland, MA, USA

problem #8

Jun 222016


  • 40,000 miles
I have full documentation from Ford to back up my story: Last year the car began stalling intermittently. In buffalo, NY (we live in the Chicago area). The stalling got so bad that she was worried about driving back home 10-hours+. she went into the local dealer there and had the car plugged into the computer...which detected no faults. She made sure to describe the problem fully and it is documented on the receipt. The car has continued to have this problem. I read that the Ford dealer can install a "black box" with a button that one can push when an intermittent problem happens. We did this and we got three good pushes of the button when it subsequently stalled and the dealer downloaded the info and found that the throttle body is faulty....of course the car (we had extended service plan) is now out of warranty for about 1.7K miles (not time). Note that the car failed to trigger the check engine light...it was only at my insistence that they put in a "black box" that any problem was found. The Ford customer care person on the phone keeps telling me that "the current problem" occurred after the car was out of warranty. But our documented maintenance history proves that this is a problem dating from last year. This is a year-old problem that the dealer was only just able to diagnose...and then only because I learned about the "black box" that was available. The bottom line is that the dealership failed to find the problem last year, and because they failed to find the problem we are now on the hook for the repair. I have copies of the receipt from last year. Oh, and to add insult to injury my wife had to pay Ford $108.70 for them to plug the car in last year... the car never had a check engine light or displayed fault codes when plugged into the computer normally. It would have been nice if the black box was suggested as a diagnostic option however.

- Winthrop Harbor, IL, USA

problem #7

Jun 192016


  • 79,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Ford Flex. While driving 30 mph, the water pump failed and caused the timing belt to fracture. The failure caused the pistons in the engine to bend the engine valve. The vehicle stalled and was towed to an independent mechanic. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the issue. The failure mileage was 79,000.

- Sea Cliff, NY, USA

problem #6

Sep 212012


  • 3,450 miles


It has happened since 2012 Sept, when I bought it at 4000km. I was about to start from a traffic light. I let go my brake and 'slightly' onto gas. "nothing at all happened." I push a bit harder and it crank into another gear as I felt like 'galloping'. I brought it to the body shop I knew (8 pm) and was told to go to dealers for transmittion check up. Did so, in 3 days - 'no code' no problem. It happened in November 2012; trying to catch up with traffic on 401 highway - March 2013, moving slowly in scity street - June and Oct 2013; from stop - April 2014, June 2015 and about to stop before traffice light - May 2016. I brought it into 2 different delears, 3 private bodyshops. Dealers found nothing - 'no code'; private body shop - water/ air trapped in gas/ fuel line; bad transmission etc. Contacted Ford customer sevices - told to contact local delears, record on file. No solution still. This is Ford!!!! once get the chance - go anything other than Ford!!

- Ottawa, Ontario Canada K1g2w2, NY, USA

problem #5

Sep 232015


  • 125,000 miles
While accelerating from a stop with the ecoboost system, the car will almost stall, then speed up with out your foot on the pedal. It blows black smoke and then it will be fine. This has happened on and off for the past several months, the car had an extended warranty in which this showed up. While this was going on I have had to replace the power transfer unit because it locked up, then the car would only work in front wheel drive, have had nothing but trouble since the car radiator fan system burned up and they replaced. They have re-flashed modules after they could not figure out what was happening, however it still does it. I am worried as the car has speed up to 2000 RPM while driving and stayed there with out the gas pedal being pressed.

- Osceola, IN, USA

problem #4

Apr 012015


  • 89,300 miles
Upon acceleration, usually from a complete stop such as accelerating from a stop sign or on a green light, it feels as though the gears do no catch & the car jerks and the RPM's raise but the car stops accelerating. Will also have a "stuttering" or "jerking" while at a complete stop with break pedal being pressed down. I have taken this issue to the dealership as it is still under extended warranty and have been told that everything checked out normal & the mechanic at the dealership was unable to get the vehicle to have such described malfunctions because it is doesn't happen every single time the car is driven. The jerking while driving actually occurs on a daily basis but is sporadic & can jerk you forward due to the sudden loss of acceleration capability, startling and painful because the seatbelt mechanism has engaged in the past.

- Chico, CA, USA

problem #3

Mar 012011


  • 7,500 miles


Engine had massive top engine detonation (backfire) with only 7500 miles on new car. Ever since this event the car shudders, stammers, shakes and does not want to accelerate smoothly. The problem varies in daily severity and is always worse in wet, heavy moisture periods. I have taken the car to five (5) different Ford dealerships and they all say there is no problem because there are no codes indicating a problem. One of the Ford dealerships went to great lengths to fix the car but to no avail. They rebuilt the transmission because they thought it was a failure to downshift. They later replaced three different sensors on this ecoboost engine (they said there are 33 different sensors) and this actually gave temporary improvements, but this was also in the very dry dallas summer. As soon as I drove back across Arkansas to Tennessee the car was as bad as before. This car actually gets 14.2 miles per gallon combined driving and it was rated at 18mpg (16city and 21highway). The car averaged 18.6mpg for the 7500 miles prior to the problem. I have put up with this problem for over three years but I have learned to not drive the car in the rain. There are other family cars that I can drive or I would have pulled my hair out. This problem was elevated to Ford customer service on several occasions (4 or 5 different times) and they never took ownership of the problem or the process. There appears to be a firewall established between the Ford technical group and Ford dealership service departments. Several service people complained that they could not contact Ford technical people directly and that it required a failure code entry into the service system without solution to facilitate contact with technicians and engineers. No code no problem! I sure am glad they have a code for every situation!

- Lafayette, TN, USA

problem #2

Oct 082013


  • 68,260 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Ford Flex. The contact stated that while driving approximately 40 mph, there was sudden reduction of engine power without warning. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer where both turbo booster were replaced. Most recently, the failure recurred and one of the turbo booster was replaced by the dealer. The manufacturer was notified of the problem. The approximate failure mileage was 68,260.

- Gaithersburg, MD, USA

problem #1

Mar 032012

Flex 6-cyl

  • 10,000 miles
Our 2011 Ford Flex we bought "new" in October of 2010. It has all the bells & whistles & had a sticker price of almost $51,000 dollars! this car doesn't like to get wet! it stalls in the snow, rain, car wash & even puddles! it just "shuts down" in the middle of an intersection.....it will "putt putt" & almost stall on highways. We came sooo close to getting killed! ugh....we have taken this car in to (metro Ford in raynham) at least "4" times. The last time was just a couple of months ago & it was there for "4 weeks"! then this was it.........we had to take our 19 yr old daughter to the er last thurs. She fainted & hit her head hard! this car stalled all the way to the hospital!! we almost didn't make it there!! this car is a lemon!!! we want this car replaced!!!

- Taunton, MA, USA

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