The new 2010 Ford Taurus may share nothing mechanically with the model that ended production a few years ago, but it will launch this September with one thing in common: incentives. A poster car for rental fleets, the last-generation Taurus was being sold with rebates of between $3,000 and $4,000 before Ford stopped selling it to retail customers altogether. The new Taurus, despite being better in every way and touted as the brand's new halo sedan, will go on sale with an early-order incentive offering $500 to buyers who receive their car by September 1 and an additional $1,000 cash rebate on all but the base model Taurus.
The new Taurus shouldn't be judged too harshly for launching with money on its hood. Poor sales can't be blamed, because none have been sold yet. The incentives are meant to kick off Taurus sales and get the numbers up to where they might have been had the economy not gone sour. And to ensure the new Taurus doesn't wind up clogging rental fleet lots like the last one, Ford has stated that it will keep rental sales in the single- or low-double-digit range.
[Source: Automotive News, sub. req'd]