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IS A FREESTYLE THAT GREAT?

Uke
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IS A FREESTYLE THAT GREAT?

Post by Uke » Mon May 28, 2007 11:24 am

I am looking for a new vehicle and the Freestyle has hit my radar screen BIG TIME.

I have targeted the limited model as it has all the necessary options and the price is right for our family.

I have talked to owners of the vehicle in parking lots, soccer games etc. (beware if you see someone approaching you with questions, its probably me) & I have heard somewhat mixed reviews.

Cons have been user unfriendly instrumentations, weak engine, air conditioner restrictions and that the vehicle is going to be discontinued.

Reading this forum, I see many satisfied customers

Are they really that great?

cheers

UKE

neil0311
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Post by neil0311 » Mon May 28, 2007 12:45 pm

We have an '07 AWD Limited. My wife drives ours primarily, and yes, it's been a pretty good vehicle for the 9 months we're had it. Many of the issues we have are being fixed in '08 with the replacement Taurus X. My suggestion is wait another 3 months and get an '08.

Cons for us:

Needs more hp and torque (Ford agrees and the '08 Taurus X which will replace the Freestyle will have a 3.5L V6) ; the CVT makes the limited power even more sluggish and is also being replaced with a 6 spd AT in '08; hatch is a little tight for cargo room when the 3rd row of seats is in use; can't get satellite radio with the DVD system (mutually exclusive); no tint on the rear passenger doors; gas mileage isn't very good considering the relatively small engine and CVT (probably because the AWD version is heavy, the engine is underpowered, and Ford has never been a leader in fuel economy or engine efficiency).

Pros for us:

Comfortable; reliable so far (only problem was the driver's power window switch); AWD handles well in the winter; looks good and handles well for a wagon/SUV/xover vehicle.

All in all... if you can get a super good deal on an '07 or must have the car now, then buy an '07. Otherwise wait a few months for the '08 Taurus X. Just the bigger engine and no CVT will be worth it.

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NorseaBlue
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Post by NorseaBlue » Mon May 28, 2007 1:26 pm

"the CVT makes the limited power even more sluggish"

On the contrary, a CVT transmission makes the most of an engine's available torque and horsepower. It also gives that vehicle it's best possible fuel mileage. The only reason the CVT is being discontinued on the revamped Taurus X is because of it's cost of production, which would have included what it would have cost to upgrade it to handle the additional loads of the bigger engine. It's simply a lot cheaper and easier for Ford to drop in the new 6-speed trany instead.

The only downgrade on the new Taurus X (compared to a Freestyle) will be the loss of the CVT. Putting that aside, the Taurus X should be a terrific vehicle.
'05 SEL Norsea Blue/Shale Leather
Frt. Row Comfort/Aux Climate/50/50 3rd row

neil0311
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Post by neil0311 » Mon May 28, 2007 2:05 pm

NorseaBlue wrote:"the CVT makes the limited power even more sluggish"

On the contrary, a CVT transmission makes the most of an engine's available torque and horsepower. It also gives that vehicle it's best possible fuel mileage. The only reason the CVT is being discontinued on the revamped Taurus X is because of it's cost of production, which would have included what it would have cost to upgrade it to handle the additional loads of the bigger engine. It's simply a lot cheaper and easier for Ford to put in the new 6-speed trany instead.

The only downgrade on the new Taurus X (compared to a Freestyle) will be the loss of the CVT.
I'm basing my comments on 2 things: my personal experience driving the vehicle, and testing done on Nissans with CVT. In all cases, the Nissans displayed poorer performance off the mark, and poorer fuel economy, despite claims to the contrary. Nissan has continued to receive poor marks for fuel econonmy when similar classes and models are compared with Honda and Toyota.

I like Fords and have owned an '84 Escort, '91 Probe, '92 Explorer, and now the Freestyle, but I've also owned Toyotas, a Honda, and currently a Lexus, and they all blow Ford away in performance and efficiency. The Camry (while not a car I'd own) is an example. It gets 21/30 mpg city/hwy and a 268hp 3.5 V6 w/ 6spd AT that does 0-6 in 6.5 seconds, all with a weight in the 3500 - 3700 lbs range.

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NorseaBlue
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Post by NorseaBlue » Mon May 28, 2007 2:29 pm

neil0311,

I'm afraid your "apples to oranges" comparisons shed no light on the issue at all. You had implied earlier that the CVT in the Freestyle made it more "sluggish" than it presumably would have been with a "conventional" automatic transmission. My point is simply that a CVT transmission, by it's very nature and design, makes the absolute most of a powerplant's available torque and hp. By doing so, it also delivers that powerplant's best fuel efficiency, especially when compared to a "fixed-geared" automatic transmission. It's not a matter of conjecture. It's accepted fact.
'05 SEL Norsea Blue/Shale Leather
Frt. Row Comfort/Aux Climate/50/50 3rd row

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andysinnh
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Post by andysinnh » Mon May 28, 2007 5:29 pm

I'll put a few cents worth in here. The wife just got an '07 AWD Limited with DVD, and she was coming off of an '04 Honda Pilot 4WD EX-L/DVD lease. It was a couple of nights "sleeping on it" going from Honda to Ford, but the deal and features she needed were too good to pass up, so she pulled the trigger. After 1500 miles she couldn't be happier, and I'll admit I'm pretty impressed as well (I also drive a Honda Pilot 4WD - 2006 - so that's my comparative point).

I'll address a few of your concerns. Now the that motor and tranny are getting broken in, I'm VERY happy with the accelleration and drivability of the Freestyle - no complaints whatsoever. My Pilot has a 3.5L with a 5-speed auto tranny, and while it is a bit quicker than the freestyle, the power response even at highway speeds is very similar. So unless you're towing or hauling rocks, I'd say not to worry about the freestyle driveline. I test drove a Ford Edge, that has the same driveline/engine that the TaurusX will have next year, and while it's sporty, I wouldn't hesitate to take the current Freestyle driveline.

As far as the a/c is concerned, we've used it a bit on pretty hot days up here so far and had no issues with theA/C's performance. We have the rear controls on our Limited, so that may give more flexibility, but the cooling power isn't an issue. Also, the instrumentation seems fine - not sure what the issues would be there.

Finally, the "discontinued" aspect isn't really relevant, as the body itself is being changed only in a minor fashion, and the drivetrain has cousins with the Ford500 and Merc Montego for the last 3 years, so there is some history. I really like the CVT - you've got to get used to it, but everything I've read says it's a pretty sturdy unit, and if you're getting an AWD (Haldex system out of europe), it's got good reviews and a pretty good track record.

Overall, if you really need/want the features of the '08 TaurusX, then wait - but if you're waiting just because you think the current Freestyle is a sub-par vehicle, I'm going to disagree with that interpretation....

andy
A "Ford" and 3 "Honda" Family in NH

04 Mazda Tribute LX AWD 107k miles
12 Acura TL SH-AWD 5k miles
12 Honda Civic LX Coupe 5k miles (son's)
13 Acura MDX SH-AWD 1k miles

Previous - 07 Ford Freestyle Limited AWD 68k miles (traded)

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BlueStyleLTD
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Re: IS A FREESTYLE THAT GREAT?

Post by BlueStyleLTD » Mon May 28, 2007 5:46 pm

Uke wrote:I am looking for a new vehicle and the Freestyle has hit my radar screen BIG TIME.

I have targeted the limited model as it has all the necessary options and the price is right for our family.

I have talked to owners of the vehicle in parking lots, soccer games etc. (beware if you see someone approaching you with questions, its probably me) & I have heard somewhat mixed reviews.

Cons have been user unfriendly instrumentations, weak engine, air conditioner restrictions and that the vehicle is going to be discontinued.

Reading this forum, I see many satisfied customers

Are they really that great?

cheers

UKE
We have had our Freestyle LTD for nearly 16 months and have no complaints at all. The 3.0 L Duratek meets our needs just right. I don't see a need for more HP or Torque for the loads that we normally carry. I have no complaints with the instrumentation or the air conditioning.

Our local FORD dealer is offering $8000 off on 2007 Freestyles. With that kind of offer, you could get a maxed out Limited in the $26K-27K range. Discontinued or not --- you will look long and hard for as nice a vehicle for that kind of money.
BlueStyleLTD
2006 FWD Limited with the works
Dark Blue Pearl with Black Interior
Adopted 14 January 2006
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jaunty75
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Post by jaunty75 » Mon May 28, 2007 5:47 pm

Are they really that great?
If that's your standard, you'll never buy a new car. No car is perfect.

We've had our '05 SE for almost two years now (took delivery on June 8, 2005), and it now has about 44,000 miles on it. We couldn't be happier with it.

dug01
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Post by dug01 » Mon May 28, 2007 6:22 pm

[quote="NorseaBlue"][b][i]"the CVT makes the limited power even more sluggish"[/i][/b]

On the contrary, a CVT transmission makes the [u]most[/u] of an engine's available torque and horsepower. It also gives that vehicle it's best possible fuel mileage. The only reason the CVT is being discontinued on the revamped Taurus X is because of it's cost of production, which would have included what it would have cost to upgrade it to handle the additional loads of the bigger engine. It's simply a lot cheaper and easier for Ford to drop in the new 6-speed trany instead.

The only downgrade on the new Taurus X (compared to a Freestyle) will be the loss of the CVT. Putting that aside, the Taurus X should be a terrific vehicle.[/quote]

Actually I have an older Ford 500 brochure --it shows mileage figures for the FWD model with the CVT and the 6 Speed--The 6 Speed has a higher mileage rating but the CVT has better acceleration--You will be better off with the 6 speed--the CVT does not mate up well with the crude taurus engine--I rented one for a week and when under load it sounded like a cow mooing--the undulations of the engine were annoying--maybe you could become used to it after a while--also I thought the front seats were too small and I could not get comfortable--But a great package non the less--the X looks like they finally got it right. The X with the 6sp and the bigger engine will make the whole package just about perfect--but I suspect that it won't be around long--the Edge is outselling it and I don't see Ford having 2 crossover type vehicles that are so similar--
Last edited by dug01 on Mon May 28, 2007 6:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Fordgirl
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Go for it!

Post by Fordgirl » Mon May 28, 2007 6:22 pm

We bought an 07 FWD this February and couldn't be happier! Can't say much about the AWD, we test drove one and for our situation we felt we didn't need the AWD. Our FWD powered through huge snow drifts just fine. I don't think the tranny or acceleration is sluggish at all, if you are worried about it get a V8 something and then complain about gas mileage. One of my friends bought a pacifica and complains about getting 18 mpg city. When I want to pass someone, I can and that is all I need. To someone not used to the CVT they might think the lack of shifting feels like no power. Our dealer and salesman said the reason why they are changing to the different tranny is to let people be able to haul and tow more- that is all, not because it is faulty. People want to haul their toys, for us we have a 3/4 ton FORD truck for. We have had no problems with the AC, quite chilly in fact, we have the rear controls also. The instrumentation is fine, but for us this is our first ever new car, so to us it has alot of bells and whistles compared to our former 73 wagon or a truck. We didn't want DVD, our kids look our the windows and read books, but maybe we will regret on our trip across the country! LOL :) Love it and much better than mini van in our book- JMHO-

ytiger
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Post by ytiger » Mon May 28, 2007 10:21 pm

You seldom see Ford owners preach on what they're driving. That's why I bought a 07 SEL AWD before they are all gone and parted with the Previa 4x4 that I've been driving for 10 years. Hopefully this one can serve me for another 10 years too. So far so good. One thing you have to adjust to is when you are not accelerating the tach always drop back to the 1000-1500 range.

Hammerhead
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Post by Hammerhead » Tue May 29, 2007 4:25 am

UNDERPOWERED? I have said it many times, my freebie will go from zero to speeding ticked quicker than you can get your wallet out or open your new and improved insurance bill. More power, for the X?

My friend just bought a Dodge Viper. His only complaint, somewhat underpowered...........................

Enough already on the power, maybe I can haul the wife and kids around in that new FERRARI ENZO with the v 12

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andysinnh
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Post by andysinnh » Tue May 29, 2007 7:08 am

Hammerhead wrote:UNDERPOWERED? I have said it many times, my freebie will go from zero to speeding ticked quicker than you can get your wallet out or open your new and improved insurance bill. More power, for the X?

My friend just bought a Dodge Viper. His only complaint, somewhat underpowered...........................

Enough already on the power, maybe I can haul the wife and kids around in that new FERRARI ENZO with the v 12
Yesterday the wife and I went shopping (away-from-the-kids therapy, as she calls it :lol: ) and I was driving the 'Style. Had to pull out into highway traffic, and sat heavily on the loud-pedal for the first time since we've gotten it, and I was amazed at the get-up-and-go this thing has. Perhaps it's because I'm now used to the CVT, or perhaps I'm now not babying it since it's got 1500 on the clock - but I hit it hard and it revv'd up high and you could feel all 24 valves doing their thing. Very quick, very smooth - I have no idea why they call this "underpowered". I'm sold, and my wife has been for the past month!!

andy
A "Ford" and 3 "Honda" Family in NH

04 Mazda Tribute LX AWD 107k miles
12 Acura TL SH-AWD 5k miles
12 Honda Civic LX Coupe 5k miles (son's)
13 Acura MDX SH-AWD 1k miles

Previous - 07 Ford Freestyle Limited AWD 68k miles (traded)

Wendell Miller
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Post by Wendell Miller » Tue May 29, 2007 7:09 pm

Uke, I don't know why anyone would call the Freestyle UNDER POWERED. I have a '06 Limited AWD with 28,000 miles. I have challenged several of the quote higher powered vehicles Explorer, Avaitor, a couple of Toyotos both at the stop light and on the road. Now either the driver didn't have the balls to give a good run or the extra hp. and weight were a deturrent i am not for sure which. At the stop light no one ran off from me. As far as top end this thing hit 115 without any problem and felt as if it had a lot more left. The handling at speed is what impressed me, very steady more car like. I wasn't to impressed with milage at first but after 12,000 miles the milage settled in to around 21-22 combined city and parkway driving. On trips the best i have gotten is 27mpg the worst 24mpg. We are totally satisfied with our Freestyle. I love the CVT tranny. I have 18" American racing wheels with the Pirelli's, Billett Grill
& Chrome Exhaust tips. i have people stopping me and complimenting the Freestyle. Had two kids at a stop light in Louisville ,Ky. roll their window down and wanted to know what it was and where to get one!! For my family this is the right vehicle for us. No complaints.
2006 Freestyle Limited AWD, Black with Leather Pebble interior, Moom Roof, 18" American Racing wheels With Pirellies, All bells and Whistles except Nav.

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freestylercruiser
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Post by freestylercruiser » Wed May 30, 2007 7:48 pm

Uke

We bought our FS a little over a month ago and love it. We had 2 nissans and I wanted to trade in my frontier for a larger F-150. We saw the FS took it for a drive and the rest is history.

My advice to you is take it out for a spin and try it out. I love the versatility of the FS. We have the 60/40 middle seats so our 14 month old sits in the middle and the rear seats stay down for cargo. Its great. What I also like is I can fold down the front passenger seat to fit longer loads in the car. Add the fact we had a hitch put on for light towing and a bike rack the FS is great IMHO.

In the end you'll be driving it so try one on for size and if you don't seem pleased start looking for something else.

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