Bosch FlexiClick 5-in-1 12V Drill Review
The function of the FlexiClick and it's mid-range performance in the 12V class make it a really attractive option for woodworkers and cabinetmakers. Remodelers and DIYers will want to consider it as well.
When it comes to 12V drills, Pros know the benefits. They’re lightweight, compact, and a heck of a lot easier to use than their heavy-duty 18V counterparts. Because of that, many of us reach for a 12V model every chance we get. But now Bosch is making a move to give their 12V drill even more versatility with the new Bosch FlexiClick 5-in-1 12V Drill.
The basic design concept is that you have interchangeable chucks and it’s hard to ignore the similarities to Festool’s PDC-18/4 Quadrive with a similar concept. Festool has a few more bells and whistles – and a much higher price point to go along with them. So we’ll leave the direct comparisons alone for now and focus on what the Bosch FlexClick offers.
The four chucks that come with the set have a simple twist lock design that makes them very easy to put on or take off but still lock securely in place. Here’s what you get:
Bosch FlexiClick 5-in-1 12V Drill Chucks
In its most compact form, the Bosch FlexiClick has a magnetic 1/4″ hex drive and measures just 5-1/5″ long.
As a standard 3/8″ keyless chuck, the only thing unique here is the ability to remove it from the drill. Use this with any standard round bits, but stick to the other chucks for hex bits. The keyless chuck fits on the base tool or the right angle chuck.
Locking Bit Holder
The locking bit holder acts just like a 1/4″ quick release collet on any impact driver. It adds an extra measure of security over the magnetic bit holders in the system. You can attach it to the base tool or the right angle chuck.
Right Angle Chuck
The Bosch FlexiClick 12v Drill’s right angle chuck is the one I’m most excited about. On its own, it works as a 1/4″ magnetic chuck but can attach the locking bit holder, keyless chuck, or offset angle chuck to give you more versatility. What’s particularly helpful is that is can lock into 16 different angle positions around the drill to get in a variety of awkward spots.
Offset Angle Chuck
The offset angle chuck comes into play when you need to fasten or drill close to another surface. Normally, you start to cam out the bit trying to get a standard drill and bit in there, but this chuck allows to get ~1/4″ away from material already set perpendicular to your workpiece. It locks into the base tool or the right angle chuck, has a locking 1/4″ hex drive, and rotates to any angle before you lock it in place.
Obviously, the interchangeable chuck feature is the highlight of the drill, but it’s no slouch over the rest of the tool. You get a 2-speed motor to work with. It’s not brushless, but it will give you up to 265 in. lbs. of torque.
Like you expect from any Pro-level drill, there’s a chuck you can use to dial in a driving depth or flip it all the way over to lock it in drilling mode for the most torque.
An LED light below the chuck is pretty effective at lighting up your work. It’s not as effective as the ones that surround the chuck, but it does a good job.
An LED battery level indicator in on the left side of the tool as you’re holding it. It lights up as soon as you pull the trigger, so it’s easy to see how much charge you have left. That’s handy since there’s no indicator on the battery pack.
By necessity, Bosch’s handle ergonomics are driven by the stick pack design of their batteries. Even though this makes the handle thicker, they do a good job with what they have to work with and the handle fits in my hand well.
The balance is almost a non-issue with a tool this light. However, you’ll notice a shift forward depending on which chuck you’re using.
High performance always takes a backseat when you move to compact 12V tools and the Bosch FlexiClick is no exception. You’ll get just 265 in. lbs. of torque and 1,300 RPM out of it. Compare that to 18V drill that can push up to 1200 in. lbs. of torque and 2100 RPM and you realize quickly that it’s not a fair fight. But when it comes to 12V drills, you’re looking at maxing out around 1700 RPM and 400 in. lbs. of torque.
We did a variety of drilling and fastening. While there are clearly other 12V drills that outperform it in speed and power, it’s still a very effective tool.
Consider how the versatility of the Bosch FlexiClick is designed to create an advantage. It’s not for those heavy-duty applications, it’s for precision applications where getting it done right the first time matters. We’re talking woodworking, not masonry. And it’s solid in those places.
The Bottom Line
Before we draw out some final thoughts, let’s consider the price. The Bosch FlexiClick runs $199 at full retail price with two 2.0 AH batteries, charger, and a couple of bits. That makes it pretty much the most expensive 12V drill among the major power tool brands. And considering it doesn’t have a brushless motor, that’s significant. However, we have to consider the versatility. In the end, that should be the deciding factor as to whether you go for this or another 12V model.
The function of the FlexiClick and it’s mid-range performance in the 12V class make it a really attractive option for woodworkers and cabinetmakers. Remodelers, electricians, HVAC, and DIYers will want to consider it as well.
As long as you understand the performance expectations, the only real complaint I can lobby at this stage is that the tool doesn’t stand up on its own except in its basic tool and locking bit holder forms. The other three chucks weight it forward and it falls. It’s definitely not a deal-breaker, but that along with the lack of a belt hook is something you’ll want to know going in.
Overall, I really like the design and the versatility. With Christmas on the horizon, it makes a nice gift set for the tool enthusiast on your shopping list. Spoiler alert – you’ll find it on our Christmas gift guide this year!