Back when we gave you our first drive impressions of Ford's new Taurus and Taurus SHO, we expressed a measure of concern that it wasn't immediately clear as to which competitors Dearborn's new offerings might square off against. While carving out a new niche can sometimes mean that you can coerce buyers from all segments of the market (Chrysler's PT Cruiser was a good example of this when it launched, as was the Mini Cooper), we openly questioned whether that will be the case with the Blue Oval's big new sedan:
"The Taurus name has never been extended upmarket like this before (let alone in such a waterlogged economy), and it isn't immediately clear who the model's competitors are – a detail that could prove problematic when trying to target customers."
Judging by their new comparison test which pits the SHO against a Journey-spec Infiniti G37 sedan, the folks over at Inside Line share our quandary. After all, given that the rear-drive Infiniti is significantly smaller and lighter, driven by half-as-many wheels (and seemingly from a different end of the market), this seems like a questionable matchup. And yet, there really aren't many cars that are better comparisons – the Chrysler 300C AWD, perhaps, or the front-drive Chevrolet Impala SS, but both are older propositions that are massively outclassed by the spanking new Ford. We might have suggested the Acura TL, but Inside Line already tested that car in a comparison and found it wanting.

Given that the Blue Oval itself appears to be targeting upmarket brands with some of its benchmarks, perhaps the G isn't an unreasonable choice, especially given that its as-tested price ended up being cheaper than the Ford. In any case, the SHO vs. G37 comparison makes for interesting reading, so check it out by clicking on the link below.

[Source: Inside Line; Image: Kurt Niebuhr]