Earning the status as Ford's fourth oldest nameplate currently sold in North America, the Ford Taurus has etched its name and claimed its fame into the midsize family sedan and wagon market. With features that revolutionized the market of fuel efficient designs, it has continued to charge its way to success. Despite its fall in the mid 2000s, the Ford Taurus has found its way back with new safety features, plush and quiet cruising, and an impressive design to keep up with today's demands.
1986-1991: Employing aerodynamics
The first generation of Ford Taurus was introduced to replace the slow-selling Ford Granada. With its first in-car design and quality standards, the Taurus charged its way to fame immediately. It transitioned from rear to front wheel drive and featured a rounder appearance with a highly customizable interior. Equipped with either a V6 or inline four-cylinder engine, the pioneer generation is known for optimum fuel efficiency with its aerodynamic design.
1992-1995: Earning best-seller status
Using the same overall shape but with new body panels, the Ford Taurus kept its charm to the sedan and wagon market, as it earned the title
Best-selling Car in America from 1992 through 1995. This generation featured a V6 engine exclusive Taurus for smoother engine performance. By the end of its batch, the SE trim level was introduced with alloy wheels, bucket seats, and a console to give the sedan a sporty look.
1996-1999: Shifting to an oval design
The third generation of the Ford Taurus experimented on an elliptical design in both its exterior and interior. In fact, the grille opening, rear window, greenhouse and the taillights all had oval shapes. Additionally, the instrument-cluster housing and center panel for the climate and stereo controls were also in oval form.
By 1997, the Taurus broke new grounds as it was the first sedan to be approved in the NASCAR completion. A few years later, Ford shifted focus on vehicle safety as its Taurus gained the highest rating in frontal crash tests.
2000-2007: The fall
The increasingly competitive sedan market has led the fourth generation to reduce its car price. Additionally, the Taurus minimized its oval design because of its decreasing sales. Due to the waning popularity, both the sedan and wagon types were discontinued in 2004. Two years later, rumors of reviving the Taurus surfaced, and finally the news was confirmed in 2007.
2008-2009: Rebirth from the Five Hundred
The fifth generation of the Taurus found its rebirth in the Ford Five hundred. With a new V6 engine, it received a boosted performance of 263 horsepower to suit its full-size body style. In addition, a six-speed automatic transmission became standard.
2010-present: Refreshing the Taurus
The sixth generation offered a sleeker, less conservative-looking sedan with lower roofline for a little less headroom. It is slowly transitioning into a protection-oriented auto with standard safety features that include electronic stability, traction control, four-wheel anti-lock brakes, six airbags, ignition disable, and post-crash SOS alert.