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Ford Taurus/Mercury Sable Sedans Pre-2008



  • edmund2460edmund2460 Posts: 293
    Having owned a Sable and Taurus the a/c and trans are (were - at least for the 90's) sore spots. Both my cars had these problems early. They also had engine mount failure and power steering hose replacements early. I would get the 3.0L engine, the 3.8 had head gasket problems (like mine). You should not pay, IMO, more than 12,500 for a used car with 20K GS model (pw windows,locks). Maintain religiously (I did ). Everything is dicey with a car but with these they are dicier. If you get a good warranty or price that prepares for the chance of $2,000 in repair the first 100K, you will be alright.
  • edmund2460edmund2460 Posts: 293
    Janes, if this is a 3.8L engine, give it a wide berth, I have a Sable with that engine and it has a history of problems. I would say that you are certainly living on borrowed time for a trns repair on this car, having had two of these. The A/C went out on both my Taurus and Sable early (at 60K). When you change the A/c compressor you should have the entire system changed out or you will be going back frequently for more work. That's the only way to get the contamination out. I'm not happy with the A/C compressor job I got at Pep Boys on my Sable. I think I would go to the dealer (about $1100). You need to keep in mind a potential repair bill of $2800 for this car, more if it is a 3.8. Also check the power steering house and engine mounts. Both failed on both my cars. The hose is expensive to replace.
  • I purchased this vehicle in April of 2000. Out the door with $1000 factory rebate was $21,119. The deal included adding aftermarket leather. It is really nice and much better quality than the Ford factory leather. I also had the glass tinted. Really sharp looking car. In addition, I replaced the "noisy" firestone tires with new Yokohma Avid Touring tires, and a step up size. The difference in ride is incredible and the rear noise is cut down. Very comfortable car, bucket seats, floor shifter, adj, pedals, power drv. steat, etc. The only problems have been the rear passenger window stopped working and the brake light got stuck, which was all repaired.
    Now the MPG. I do a lot of city driving, door-to-door sales. I thought the worst would be 20MPG..but realized after keeping track for a couple of months I discovered it was worst than that, averaging only 16.5 MPG. I would be lucky to get 250 miles out of a tank of gas. I fill up every 2 days.
    I decided to trade this "gas eater" in with 30K miles. The car is in immaculate condition with oil changes like clockwork every 3K miles. I visited Honda, Toyota, Nissan, etc..etc. All offered around $10-10.5K. Ford dealers (knowing the value better) only offered $9-9.5K. Let's see...with a purchase price of around $19,100 new (includes $1000K rebate) that would be a trade depreciation amount of $8,600 for trade 16 months after purchase. Private party puts this baby at $11,595 with wholesale at $10,695. I have had advertised for nearly 2 weeks at $11,995 with not a single call. Every dealer tells me the market is soft on Taurus models and there are just to many available for retail at the $10-$12K price range. WARNING - DO NOT BUY A NEW TAURUS. YOU ARE WASTING YOUR MONEY. YOU CAN FIND A NEARLY NEW TAURUS FOR WAY UNDER WHAT YOU WILL PAY FORD FOR A BRAND NEW ONE - EVEN WITH THEIR $2000 FACTORY REBATE MONEY THAT CAN ONLY BE USED AFTER THE CAR IS TAXED. THE RENTAL MARKET IS FLOODED WITH THESE CARS. EVEN IF I COULD SELL FOR $11,595, THE CAR WOULD DEPRECIATE AT A RATE OF $469 PER DAY. HELL, FOR EVEN HALF OF THAT PLUS MY MONTHLY PAYMENT I COULD HAVE BEEN DRIVING A BMW.
    So I purchased a brand new 2001 Toyota Camry LE for $19,093 + Aftermarket Leather for $1,195 and took the $1000 factory rebate towards my down. What a huge difference in quality. Quiet, smooth, really nice..oh yes...and a good 425 miles per tank too with mainly city driving. Anyone want a Taurus?
  • Is the Camry a 4 or 6? My 24V Sable doesn't get more than about 18 with pure in town driving. The tank is also miniscule at only 13-14 USUABLE gallons.
  • The New Camry is a 4 Cyl. I cannot tell you how awsome this drives compared to the 2000 Taurus 24V Duratec. I drive basically 5 miles over the speed limit (70 MPH) on the HWY and do not have a lead foot in the city (tried to conserve gas). Yes the tank is only 16 gal but the dumb gas gauge shows below empty at 14 fortunately changed in 2001 models to 18 Gal. tanks...which really should be more like 20 gal.
    I will never buy brand new Taurus again. What a waist of $$.
  • snowmansnowman Posts: 540
    I am glad you are happy now with your purchase. I ordered 4 Yoko Avid tourings too and get them installed on this saturday. Finally get rid of the lousy firestones. Can you give me any input on those tires since you used them. I found them very good in consumer surveys. Thanks.
  • r5512r5512 Posts: 1
    I purchased my Taurus in January of 2001. I looked at Honda, Toyota and Chyrsler. The Honda and toyota did not have a good value for the money, also did not seem to be as durable as the Taurus. The Honda, Toyota and Chyrsler did not have the safety features. Something else, my wife is the primary driver and she said that the Honda did not feel very powerful with the six, nor was the Toyota as sporty as the Taurus. The Chyrsler was much too large, but was as powerful. For the options and features the Taurus was a much better deal. I paid around $19.8
    and got a 24 vavle 6 cylinder Duratec, leather, cd changer, side air bags, all power, alloy wheels and moonroof, with rebates of course. The others could not touch it, and a much better car to boot. After owned a Toyota Camery, I can now say, thank you ford and I will never buy another Japanese automobile again. They are not as high and mighty as there price attached to them.
  • taurus2taurus2 Posts: 63
    I think the '02 Camry resembles the Taurus in many ways.

  • pitpit Posts: 4
    steves24v - sounds like you made the same decision as me. I've been driving Toyotas since '83. Last car was a '92 Camry LE and thought I would buy an '01 LE to replace. But the look has gotten stale and the 4 cylinder engine is underpowered. The Taurus looked better, has much more space (front, back, truck, you name it), and you can get all the options you want and still walk away for a couple of grand less than the LE Camry.
    I wound up buying a Spruce Green SES w/ the Duratec, leather, side air bags, 6 disc CD, ...
    I liked my Camry, but I'm loving the Taurus.
    Just finished driving 500 miles through the Colorado mountains. Great acceleration even climbing up to the 12,000 foot passes. And was able to ride over to Vail with 6 people in the car - never would have tried that in my Camry.

    The biggest knock on Taurus is the resale after 1 year (disaster if you've got to sell) - but if you keep your cars a long time (I avg 9 yrs), it's not much of an issue.

    I was tempted to wait for a test drive of the 2002 Camry. The looks are improved and the 4 cyl engine gets a nice bump to 157 hp. But there won't be a rebate and the dealers will try to get close to sticker for the first 6 months. Couldn't wait that long.
  • Steve. Can't compare MPG between a 4 and 6 cylinder. The 4 will win every time, in a passenger car application. MANY V8's get much better milage than a 4 banger Offenhauser! I believe that a car should have a 500 mile freeway range. Nothing tickes me off more than having to stop every 350-400 miles for gas!
  • ohio7ohio7 Posts: 67
    Amen to pit, r5512, and ezaircon4jc!! The Camry and Accord Do have small back areas and DO have small trunks for four door intermediate sized cars. If anyone has read many of the postings here they can see how many owners are VERY happy with their Tauruses. None of us want to throw away extra money on some car that does not serve the full purpose of an almost full-sized car.

    I think that steves24v does not like Ford in general for him to make all of the statements, that, quite clearly to the majority of us, don't apply to our cars. And trying to compare apples (4 cyl.) to oranges (6 cyl.) is ridiculous at best!

    Besides, both the Camry and Accord are very unattractive cars. Fords distinct rear lights alone beat the entire back end of the others. Being a designer, this is important to me.
  • shank6shank6 Posts: 64
    Well, the saga continues with my 99SE. Last Friday I went to shift from Park to Reverse and the column shifter went right to the base of it. I opened the hood to find my linkage connection bolt to the transmission on the ground under the car.

    After the rental for two days and the repair, the total came to 168.00 dollars. STEVES24V, makes some very good points. Although the initial offer seems like a better deal on the Taurus, the resale and/ or trade in is horrible. Over and above that,it's even worse if you've had the problems I've had (posts-992,975,924,748).

    I want to support the brand and buy American, but it's getting harder and harder. My 91 Integra went 252,000 miles with only timing belt changes. The 95 Camry we purchased was flawless until it was broadsided and totaled in 1999. The 2000 Sable LS premium has been ok so far ( 8500 miles ) but we'll have to wait and see.
  • wkohlerwkohler Posts: 74
    As with any vehicle built over the years with minimal changes and built with large numbers in mind, the resale value is going to go down the tubes immediately after purchase. I own a 93 Plymouth Acclaim that can be catagorized the same as the Taurus. I bought the Acclaim new in 93 and after 100,000 plus miles, still own it. I didn't ever consider selling or trading the vehicle. I just recently (last October) bought a 2001 Taurus SES with the exact same idea. I have absolutely no thoughts of selling or trading it. I'll drive it for at least 10 years, then probably do what I'm considering doing with the Acclaim; finding a college student who can use some basic transportation during their college years and GIVING the vehicle to them. I can write that off on my taxes. The Acclaim has been a very good, reliable vehicle. I just spent about $100+ to have it inspected to make sure that the vehicle is in good, safe working order. Also, I have, over the years, made sure I maintained the vehicle at least to the manufacturers specifications. I feel confident that whoever gets the vehicle will have a safe, reliable vehicle for at least a couple of years. If the vehicle "dies" during their ownership, then they aren't out anything. If you're looking at a Taurus as your only means of transportation, and considering selling or trading after 2 to 4 years, then you should consider looking for something with better resale value.
  • A car has to be the WORST in investment terms. Very few will increase in value, few will remain constant and the vast majority will fall faster than Der Schlickmeister's surpporters! A car should never be viewed as an investment. It is a disposable/durable good. Buy what you like until you don't like/want it anymore then get rid of it!
  • bolivarbolivar Posts: 2,316
    I'm not a Tax Accountant, but I play one on the Message Boards.....

    I don't think you can 'give a car to a college student' and write it off on your taxes. You've got to gift to a tax-exempt organization to get a deduction.
  • oxx93oxx93 Posts: 67
    has anyone noticed a sizzle sound once you shut the car off? i have a 2001 ses and it sounds like steak being thrown on a grill--some type of condensation falling on to some pan in the engine? just curious if anyone else has noticed this---i do not think it is a problem-just odd
  • asdxereasdxere Posts: 29
    I testdrove a 2001 Mustang recently and it "sizzled" too. Sales rep and I tracked it down to the a/c dripping on part of the engine. The Taurus, of course, has a different engine. It wouldn't hurt to track down the noise, just in case it's anti-freeze or a more "crucial" fluid...
    Hope you find your sizzle...
  • Hello Everyone. Let me elaborate on my position since I think some of you think I am knocking the Ford Taurus. I think the design is really attractive and the price is fair. Looks like they made some good improvements over 2000 debut models by increasing the gas tank size...etc..etc. Here in California the gas was peaking at $2.00 per gal in early spring/summer. I am in sales and drive lots of city miles, aprox. 28K per year. I was filling up every 2 days. I would have kept my Taurus if I was traveling longer freeway distances and actually getting 20+ MPG. The seats were extremely comfortable and roomy back seat/trunk, etc. However, for my situtation a 4 banger is better around the city. I bought a 2001 Camry LE with Power Pkg, 6 speaker CD, keyless entry, etc. Added perfed leather for another $1,100 (cannot drive without since I did the same in the Taurus). Price w/leather was $19,083. This is exactly what I paid for the 2000 SES Taurus w/leather and 24V pkg. I admit the power is not the same..but..the ride is much smoother and quieter in the Camry. I really don't miss the V6 at all.
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,918
    Having just gone through the entire car buying experience and test driven the above cars, I would place the Accord- 1st, Taurus 2nd and Camry 3rd (only because of price). Drove the Taurus SE (155 HP) right after the Accord LX and it was quite noticeable the differences. Accord was much smoother, better acceleration (even though it had the 4 cyl.) better styling inside (totally subjective)and desptie what was posted before the back seat was the same for both. The entire Camry experience at the dealer left me wanting to take a shower afterwards.

    RE-sale value of a vehicle takes into account a number of different variables. Reliablilty and durablilty of previous model cars, price of the car, who the car is sold to (individuals vs. fleet and rentals), rebates and discounts offered at the time of purchase, etc. The Accord and Camry have a history of offering reliable cars. Does it mean they are perfect? No. Does it mean they don't break down? No. Been your odds are better then the average car of not having any major repairs and for lasting well over 100,000 miles. What hurts the Taurus is so many are sold as fleet and rental vehicles. These vehicles are sold on the used car market as one and two year old cars with over 30,000 miles and uncertain prior maintence. You seldom see an Accord or Camry in a rental fleet. Plus the previous history of the Taurus models doesn't help either. Again, not all of them were bad (simply look through this post and you will see this) but a higher percentage then the Accord and Camry needed major repairs (just look at he recall of the 3.8 L motor). Also all the rebates offered on the Taurus immediately knock the re-sale value down. I saw an interesting article by the Honda CEO in japan explaining why Honda never offers rebates on their vehicles. He claims they immediately kill the re-sell value of a car because now the price of the vehicle is immediately reduced by that amount. So $16000 vehilce with a $1500 rebate is now worth at most $14500. Take into account that your car immediately drops $1000 in value as soon as you title it and leave the lot. Now you are at $13,500. So if you had a $16,000 car and wanted to trade it in within a week, the most the dealer will give oyu for the car is $12000 (normal trade-in value is much less then the true value) for a vehicle you just bought a week ago for $16000.

    Am I bashing the Taurus? No. It is a very nice vehicle (Although I was quite surprised by the limited leg room for such a mid-size car). I found the base V6 to be underpowered. Why doesn't Ford just make the 200HP engine standard? It gets the same gas mileage as the base engine. The styling is much better then the previous model. It does have a little more "flair" then the Camry and Accord. I liked the interior of the Accord the best. It was cleaner. Again this is totally subjective and up to the discretion of the person writing the check.

    After all of this I bet you all think I bought an Accord. Nope! If I was the main driver, that is what I would have bought. But my wife liked the Chevy malibu, believe it or not. I have to admit, it's not a bad car at all. Similar room to the above mentioned cars, good power, roomy, comfortable interior. Not as refined as the Accord or Camry. I think Edmunds' review of this car is dead accurate. Why did I buy it over the Accord? Price. It was about $2500 less then the Accord and now that we found Our family is growing by one, I'm glad we made the choice. BTW, I plan to run this car into the ground so re-sale value is not an issue.

    Good Luck with your Taurus everybody. Very nice cars. You'd be better off not comparing the car you already purchsed to another one and concentrate on the positve aspects of the Taurus: roomy, good value, good safety record, nice styling, etc.

    Hope you guys don't mind a Chevy guy (I never thought I would hear myself say that) intruding on your board. It won't happen again.
  • jndfishjndfish Posts: 7
    I have a '99 Taurus SE. This car was my husband's company car and we just bought it. I believe keyless entry was standard, however his company had the delearship take it out. I will be driving this car for a few months until I decide what my next car will be (I am turning my leased minivan in tomorrow). With 2 kids and a 100 lb dog it will be quite the downsizing.
    Anyway.. does anyone know if the delearship would have actually taken the keyless entry mechanism out of the car or would they have just dissabled it? It has 49,000 miles on it so it is not under warranty. (I suppose if it was under the 36,000 miles they might have had to "fix" it under warranty.) I guess I could have a new keyless entry put in for about $100, but since I will only drive the car for a few months at most it doesn't seem worth it. If the mechanism is still in the car, I would think a Ford delearship would be able to reconnect it for a minimal charge.
    Any thoughts on this?
  • pitpit Posts: 4
    How many keyless entry / chip key sets have people gotten with their Taurus?

    At the time of purchase, I only received one key w/ my new Taurus. Had to go back in to the dealer and wait about an hour while a spare was cut and programmed. Service manager blamed the delay on the computer crashing. When I asked why I hadn't received 2 keys when I bought the car, he said Ford recently changed their practice and only provides a 2nd key "upon request". Wouldn't everyone request a spare key?

    I'm pissed that I had to spend a couple of hours on a Saturday to get the 2nd key. I'm also pissed that pissed that the spare didn't come with the remote entry fob. When I bought our minivan from Toyota, we got 2 keyless entry sets w/out question.

    Is this just my local dealer being cheap or is it the bean counters at Ford?
  • pitpit Posts: 4
    I can't believe anyone would disable a keyless entry system - that's just destroying value.
    If the car originally came with keyless entry, my guess is that the system still works. But you need the keyless entry fob.

    Keyless entry is standard on the 2001 SE - don't know for sure about the '99 model.
  • When I had my Taurus I happen to loose both sets of keys. The computer memory chip allows the dealers to reprogram a new key with the key code that the dealer keeps on file and that is programmed into the spare key too. My experience was a nightmare since I did not have a key to the car. So, the dealer had to contact the Ford Factory to reprogram the entire system with a new key code, then reprogram the keys. $275 a nightmare. I cannot believe that a new Taurus does not come with 2 keys with chips and 2 keyless entry controls.
  • ohio7ohio7 Posts: 67
    My 2000 SEL came with two sets of keys and remote fobs. They told me that if I lost one key it would cost $75 to replace and that I'd have to bring in the spare. If I lost both it would have cost me $250 because they would have to get it done at the factory. (I think.)

    How cheap, if indeed, Ford is supplying only one set. I guess they traded that for the extra 2 gallon gas tank.


    While I'm on line, I got a recall notice yesterday concerning "the wiper motor park switch (located in the wiper motor) may malfunction and cause one of the following conditions." It then goes on the state three different possibilities that could happen, including smoke and/or fire!!

    The recall effects certain 2000 and 2001 model year cars and trucks. Hope mine is excluded cause it was built in April.

    Anybody have this done yet? It's supposed to take 1/2 a day, but the last recall only took 15 minutes not the 1/2 that they stated. GRRRRRR!

    I still love the Taurus - just turned over 7700 miles last night after over a year.
  • ohio7ohio7 Posts: 67
    Just got back from the Ford dealer and had the recall matter completed. They took about 20 minutes to replace the housing for the windshield wipers. Hope that's the last!

    While I was there I spoke to my salesman about the topic of keys with a new Taurus purchase. He said YES indeed all cars come with TWO keys and TWO fobs. If anyone is paying for them the dealer is ripping them off!!
  • bolivarbolivar Posts: 2,316
    Remember the old days, when for financed cars, dealer kept a set of keys. If you didn't make the payments, the repo was just that much easier?

    How's your credit report? That lost set of keys setting in a special spot in the finance guys office?
  • vince4vince4 Posts: 1,272
    Does anyone notice a mild oil/burning smell coming in the vents? My 2000 SE is pulling in engine compartment air when I have the ventilation set to outside air. I only notice it when stopped and after the engine is warm. After the dealer "fixed" it (no change), I took half of the fresh air intake plenum apart and added more foam seal but it still does it.

    By the way, do you know there is a cabin air filter in there and you should change it yearly? It's a bit of a pain to replace but not bad if you are handy. I just bought one at the dealer, $32. My Silverado has a similar filter and it's about the same price.

    P.S. I got 2 keys and fobs with my car.
  • Main Entry: fob
    Function: noun
    Etymology: perhaps akin to German dialect Fuppe pocket
    Date: 1653
    2 : a short strap, ribbon, or chain attached especially to a pocket watch
    3 : an ornament attached to a fob chain
  • The cabin air filter does not need to be bought at the dealer. You can get one at an auto parts store (like PEP Boys) for about $12. Same filter - there is no magic to the Ford filter, just a higher price. Last time I got one, they didn't have one listed for a 2000 Taurus. Just buy the one for the 96-99 Taurus, it is the exact same size.
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