Click on the Taurus X for a high-res gallery of the latest Ford CUV Before the Honda Accord and then the Toyota Camry took over the top of the sales charts, the Ford Taurus was the number one selling car in the United States. During the final years of its lifetime the Taurus became the darling of daily rental fleets, with the bulk of its still-prodigious sales going there rather than to retail customers like its competition. This also meant in part that residual values for Taurus were the lowest in its class. As the Taurus era came to an end, Ford decided to make a clean break and split the previous sedan/wagon lineup into three distinct vehicles with new names. Thus was born the smaller, lower-cost Fusion sedan, the larger Five Hundred sedan and the Freestyle crossover wagon. The latter two never made much impact on the market thanks in large part to bland styling and underpowered engines. Shortly after launch it became known that the Five Hundred and Freestyle would be quickly restyled with the new three bar Ford grille and a bigger engine. Just before their debut at the Chicago Auto Show in February, new CEO Alan Mullaly made the decision to revive the Taurus nameplate for the revamped models and the Freestyle became the new Taurus X. Just a week after production launched at the Chicago assembly plant, Taurus X serial number 70, a Limited AWD model with the new 3.5L V-6 and six-speed automatic was turned over to Autoblog for a week of evaluation. Find out what it's like to live with the Taurus X after the jump %Gallery-4580% Going from Freestyle to Taurus X involved more than than just slapping on a new grille and taillights, although that's the aspect that most passers by will immediately notice. And notice they did. People actually stopped to take a look at the big wagon in the Whole Foods parking lot and asked what it was. The new chrome face has utterly transformed the character of the Freestyle by actually giving it some. The overall angular look of the Taurus X is more like a traditional car-based wagon than an SUV, which is fitting since it's based on the previous Volvo S80 platform. The Taurus I drove had the titanium green paint without the two-tone finish that was prevalent on the earlier model to give it that faux SUV look popularized by the Subaru Outback. Two-tone is still available, but to my eye the single color is a more handsome, upscale look. The Saturn Outlook still has a more modern and stylish appearance overall, but the Taurus finally wears the face it should have had from day one. On the inside the style is carryover, but that's fine because the design is attractive and functional. The plastic wood trim has been changed to simulate a different style of wood, but it's still plastic. If you're not going to use real tree parts, please don't bother. There's …
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|MPG||15 City / 22 Hwy|
|Transmission||6-spd auto w/OD|
|Power||263 @ 6250 rpm|
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