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October 29, 2006

The demise of the Ford Taurus

The Ford Taurus, which ended production forever this past week, has been receiving some generally favorable press. Here is an obit for the Taurus published in the New York Times.

The Times says the debut of the Taurus was a big boost for Ford.

The Taurus broke the old mold of car development in Detroit, where designers passed off their ideas to engineers, who threw them over the wall to manufacturing experts, who never talked to the marketing staff. Instead, Taurus got everyone in a room together, creating a new paradigm that companies rushed to copy.
The Taurus and its cousin, the Mercury Sable, sold millions during its 20 years on the market.

Speaking as a Taurus owner for 13 years, and as someone who actually had an emotional attachment to the car, I can only say: GOOD RIDDANCE! GOOD FREAKIN' RIDDANCE!

Fact is, the car sucked eggs. Major eggs. My 1993 Taurus LX had less than 75,000 miles on it, but I have a thick file with all the repairs I had to have done on it. Just by way of example, I went through 5 or 6 starters and starter relays. The water pump and various other parts of the cooling system failed on me. And my all-time favorite (cue scary music): the head gasket. The head gasket failure, which Tauruses were extremely prone to suffering, cost about $3000 to fix and took a week or more at the dealer. Ford agreed to pay for the repair for some owners, but limited that offer to certain model years, thus stiffing a large number of us whose head gaskets survived a few months too long.

If anyone from Ford happens to stumble on this post, I just want to say that I bought a new car this year. It was a Toyota. Feel free to send me your apology by email: pillageidiot -at- hotmail -dot- com. I still won't buy another Ford, but at least an apology will make me feel the company is not malevolent but simply incompetent. Oh, and enjoy your evening.

Bonus question: I've written a couple of posts recently about Doug Gansler, the State's Attorney for Montgomery County and the Democratic candidate for Maryland Attorney General. What is the connection between Doug Gansler and my Ford Taurus? Click on the photo for the answer.