“No one ever went broke underestimating the taste of the American public.” That paraphrase of H.L. Mencken has been a guiding principle of the auto industry for decades. Nowhere is that dictum on better display than at your local Ford dealership, where sales of the Flex trail those of the Explorer by almost 9 to 1. Design-wise, the Flex is a ’65 Ford Country Sedan thrown into a blender with a Jeep Grand Wagoneer and a modern Range Rover, the result of which stands proudly apart from the herd of lookalike SUVs. It also happens to excel at its mission, being a quiet and roomy conveyance for six or seven and their chattels; and with the available 365-hp EcoBoost V-6, it’s among the most powerful vehicles in its class. Too bad Ford never understood this vehicle, starting with its goofy name and the ridiculous ad campaign that pitched the preppy, 7-seat family wagon as a car for nightclubbing hipsters. Once the Explorer switched to the same layout, its overwhelming name recognition meant it was all over for the Flex, but we’ll take the classically handsome Flex over the bloated fat-boy Explorer any day.