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Ford Taurus (sixth generation)
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Ford Taurus (sixth generation)

The sixth-generation Ford Taurus is a full-size car manufactured by the Ford Motor Company since June 2009.[1] It is the sixth generation of the Ford Taurus, and also the largest Ford sedan available for sale.[2]

Contents

  • Development and marketing
  • Release
  • Reception
  • Design and features
  • Variants and Trim Levels
    • Taurus SHO
    • Police Interceptor
  • Safety
  • 2013 refresh
  • References and notes
  • External links

Development and marketing

The preceding Ford fifth generation Taurus was a facelifted and mechanically enhanced Ford Five Hundred. While this did address several deficiencies of the Five Hundred, particularly the powertrain, it was still criticized for its handling and bland styling,[3] with one reviewer describing it as a "SUV shaped like a sedan".[4]

In 2008, Ford Motor Company's Chief Executive Officer Alan Mulally stated that the new Taurus is "the one we should have built originally".[5]

A leaked photo of a prototype purported to be the 2010 Ford Taurus circulated on the Internet from message boards.[6] Ford contemplated legal action against web sites which posted the photo and Ford attorneys asked site owners to remove the photo.[7]

The US Ford website showed videos comparing the 2010 Taurus to 2009 model year luxury sedans, including the flagships of several Japanese marques. One test showed that the Taurus' paint coat was more resistant to gravel chips than a Lexus LS460; another noted that the Taurus had a blind-spot detection sensor system that the Infiniti M45x lacked; the third showed the Taurus SHO outpacing the Audi A6 4.2 L V8 in straight-line acceleration; the last comparison said that Taurus' cabin was quieter than an Acura RL.[8]

Sales for the sixth generation Taurus are projected to be around 50,000 to 75,000 annually, as Ford planned a lower volume to avoid steep discounts/incentives. Previous iterations of the Taurus, which were classified as midsize cars, had sold 400,000 vehicles per year at their peak in the 1990s.[9]

Release

The 2010 Ford Taurus was unveiled at the 2009 North American International Auto Show at Cobo Hall.[10] In May 2009, the new Taurus debuted at three dealers in the Buffalo, Tampa, and Houston, respectively, to be put on display and to build anticipation for the release. The first dealer, West Herr Ford in Hamburg, New York, was chosen due to the successful unveiling of the redesigned Ford F-150 earlier that year.[11]

The 2009 Taurus's counterparts, the Ford Taurus X and the Mercury Sable, ceased production in spring 2009 at Ford's Chicago Assembly Plant. The 2010 Taurus' production started on June 15, 2009.[1] Unlike previous generations of the Taurus, the seventh-generation Taurus does not have a Sable counterpart from Mercury, as that marque was slowly phased out.

Reception

The Ford scored well in test drives, and the media was pleased with some of the new features available in the 2010 Ford Taurus.[12] Some of these features include all wheel drive, cross traffic alert, collision warning, blind spot monitoring and adaptive cruise control.[13] The Taurus shares the powertrain and many available technological options of the Lincoln MKS, which is built on the same platform and mechanical underpinnings, while having a starting MSRP of $10000 USD less than the MKS.[14]

While its predecessor was criticized for dull styling, the new Taurus was described as "big and muscular" to draw attention, albeit "a love-it-or-hate-it affair".[15] Motor Trend stated that "its broad stance, high sill line, slit headlamps, and technical grille give it a leopard look" which was considered handsome.[16]

However, others criticized the lack of interior room and reduced sight-lines despite its full-sized exterior dimensions,[17] compared to the previous-generation Five Hundred/Taurus which was praised for its vast interior and greenhouse visibility; one reviewer remarked that while the "old Taurus' interior was cavernous; the new one just feels like a cavern".[18][19][13] Edmunds noted that the eighth-generation Honda Accord (which competes in the mid-size category) had superior driving dynamics and a more efficient design that yielded almost as much interior space as the larger Taurus. Car and Driver described the Taurus as overweight and underpowered, with unresponsive braking and steering, while Motor Trend criticized several aspects of the interior as evident cost-cutting.[20][21][22]

While the Taurus SHO's EcoBoost V6 engine was praised, some reviewers suggested that it was more of a big engine option while offering a marginal improvement on driving dynamics, and less of a high-performance car (compared to similarly priced cars which are rear-wheel drive like the Pontiac G8 and Chrysler 300).[23] Car and Driver was impressed with the Taurus SHO's overall performance, but sportiness was compromised with heavy curb weight, numb steering and smallish brakes.[24]

Consumer Reports has suggested the sixth generation Taurus is actually more of a freshening than a redesign.[25]

Design and features

The design of the sixth-generation Ford Taurus was led by Chief Designer Earl Lucas. Many of the Taurus' design elements were influenced by the music that the design team listened to. According to Earl Lucas, "When you've got good music, it's amazing how many shapes come out".[26] The sixth-generation Taurus also features a more aerodynamic version of the 3-Chrome Bar grille, and a rear end similar to that of the Ford Interceptor concept. 2010 Ford Taurus Interior

The new Taurus also features Ford Sync, push-button start, heated front and rear seats, crash avoidance system, and a lane-changing blind spot warning system. Also new for the Taurus is Ford's new Multi-Contour Seats, which feature air cushions that pad the driver and passenger s entire back, including three for lumbar support, four for lateral support and four for the seat pad. The bottom cushion features Active Motion technology, which provides a subtle continuous massage, designed to lessen back pain on long trips.[27] The 2010 Taurus was the first vehicle to use the Multi-Contour Seats.

Variants and Trim Levels

- SE equipment highlights:

  • Engine - 3.5 L 24-valve DOHC Duratec V6
  • Six-speed Automatic Transmission
  • Radio - AM/FM stereo with single CD player with clock, MP3 capability, six speakers
  • MyKey
  • AdvanceTrac Electronic Stability Control
- SEL equipment highlights:

Ford Taurus SEL

  • Six-Speed SelectShift Automatic Transmission with Paddle Activation
  • Dual-Zone Electronic Automatic Temperature Control
  • Steering wheel - Leather-wrapped manual tilt/telescopic with speed and secondary audio controls
  • Shift knob - leather-wrapped with chrome insert (no hill mode button)
  • SIRIUS Satellite Radio
  • Perimeter anti-theft alarm
- Limited equipment highlights:
  • Seats-Perforated leather-trim bucket seats
  • Ambient Lighting (seven varied colors)
  • SYNC Voice-activated Communications and Entertainment System
  • Radio Premium AM/FM with six-disc in-dash CD
  • Mirrors - Chrome-accented, heated with memory and security approach lamps
  • Reverse Sensing System
  • Rear View Camera


Taurus SHO

The 2010 Taurus SHO was unveiled at the 2009 Chicago Auto Show.[28] It went on sale in summer 2009, with a base MSRP of $37,995 (including destination fees).

2010 Ford Taurus SHO
2010 Ford Taurus SHO
The SHO includes a 3.5 L EcoBoost V6 engine rated at at 5500 rpm and of torque at 3500 rpm, a SelectShift 6-speed automatic transmission with control paddles mounted on the steering wheel, torque sensing all-wheel drive, sport-tuned suspension and steering, 19" alloy wheels with Goodyear Eagle tires (Michelin high-performance tires on the optional 20" wheels), a decklid-mounted spoiler, twin chrome exhaust tips, and SHO-specific parking lamp bezels.

The SHO Performance Package includes upgraded brake pads, recalibrated electronic power-assisted steering for improved responsiveness, a "Sport Mode" setting for the Electronic Stability Control, a shorter 3.16 to 1 final drive ratio for faster acceleration, and summer-compound 20" Goodyear Eagle F1 performance tires with premium painted wheels. time is rated at 5.2 seconds.

Police Interceptor

When the Ford Crown Victoria Police Interceptor (CVPI) ended production in late 2011, a variant of the sixth-generation Taurus will be offered to police forces. Ford is referring to the new police car simply as the "Police Interceptor", rather than a Taurus, although production models will likely be named "Taurus Police Interceptor". It will be available with both engines of the civilian Taurus: the 3.5 L Cyclone V6 producing , and the 3.5 L EcoBoost V6 from the SHO rated at . The EcoBoost version will feature all-wheel drive, like the SHO. The Police Interceptor will include much of Ford's latest safety technology, such as Blind Spot Information System, rear view camera, reverse sensing system, Ford SYNC, and electronic stability control.[29] Ford states the Taurus Police Interceptor will match the safety record of the CVPI, and have desirable CVPI features unavailable on the Taurus like a column-shifted automatic added back in.[30] Police officers have criticized the lack of room in the Taurus PI compared to the Crown Victoria.[31]

Safety

2010 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) crash test ratings:[32]

  • Frontal driver:
  • Frontal passenger:
  • Front side:
  • Rear side:
  • Rollover:

2013 refresh

2013 Ford Taurus facelift

The 2013 refresh of the Taurus was unveiled at the 2012 New York Auto Show and bears cosmetic changes, new engines and new technology. The most obvious changes at first glance is the new front facia incorporating shaper angles very similar to the recent facelift of the Ford Territory in Australia.

Changes to the rear of the car were minor with the only noticeable change being new taillights. While the interior remains mostly unchanged, the Taurus now incorporates the MyFord Touch system which means a new head unit with 8" touch screen, steering wheel and interactive gauge cluster. Other features new to the 2013 Taurus include a heated steering wheel, and an all new Sony sound system featuring HD Radio and iTunes Tagging. Additional interior features include Multicontour seats with Active Motion (massage), push-button start, auto high beams and a rear view camera.

The engines available on the face lifted Taurus are an EcoBoost engine with and of torque. On SHO models there is a 3.5 L turbocharged V6 of power and of torque. This engine is paired with six-speed high capacity 6F55 SelectShift Automatic.[33]

It became available at the dealerships starting April 2012.

References and notes

External links

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