click above image to view complete high-res gallery of the 2008 Ford Taurus Ford knew what it was doing handing me the keys to a 2008 Ford Taurus Limited AWD. I'm a self-professed Taurus fan, counting the 1991 Ford Taurus SHO Plus as one of my favorite cars of all time. I consider the Taurus one of the most influential cars in the history of the American auto industry. I even read a book about it called "Car: A Drama of the American Workplace" by Mary Walton. That makes me, like, an expert on the subject. Unfortunately, by the time production of the Taurus ended in late October of 2006, it had come to represent Ford's over-reliance on fleet sales rather than its cutting edge innovation. When a CEO from Kansas named Alan Mulally took over as CEO of Ford last September, one of his first actions in office was to announce that the Taurus name would return in 2008, replacing the forgettable Five-Hundred and Freestyle badges affixed to Ford's large sedan and wagon. So here we are, reviewing the 2008 Ford Taurus, and along with a new name, it's got an updated design and more powerful engine. Does the new Taurus do the old one any justice? More importantly, is it a better car than the Five-Hundred it replaces? All those questions and more will be answered after the jump. %Gallery-8635% Live Photos Copyright ©2007 John Neff / Weblogs, Inc. Whereas the design of the 1986 Ford Taurus was refreshing, and the 1997 Ford Taurus derided, the Ford Five-Hundred's design was ultimately anonymous and even derivative. The 2008 Ford Taurus, meanwhile, makes no effort to connect with Tauri of the past, but rather toes the current corporate line by adopting the brand's ubiquitous three-bar chrome grille. Both the grille and the Taurus name are meant to give Ford's big sedan some instant recognition, and they do their job. However, the 2008 Ford Taurus is really just a mid-cycle enhancement of the Five-Hundred. The car is nowhere near all-new, but the design has been tweaked extensively to get it noticed more. Along with the new grille, the front end gets new headlights that are more expressive, though we still wish Ford had used the better headlights from the Taurus X on the sedan, as well. The hood is also new with a pair of stylized indents that we find entirely superfluous. Another design element for the Superfluous Files are the fender vents. While not as atrocious as those on the 2008 Focus, they're purpose on the Taurus is to merely up the car's chrome quotient. The arched roof profile of the Five-Hundred remains, as nothing we could see has been changed between the A- and C-pillar. That is, except for those side view mirrors, which now feature four raised streaks on top that aren't just for looks. They supposedly reduce turbulence created by air blowing over and under the mirrors, which not only decreases wind noise but also improves aerodynamics. …
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|MPG||18 City / 28 Hwy|
|Transmission||6-spd auto w/OD|
|Power||263 @ 6250 rpm|
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