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Ford Taurus/Mercury Sable Sedans Pre-2008



  • robnisrobnis Posts: 78
    Thanks for the url on the SHO. I really thought that Ford had left we SHO enthusiasts to rot; however it seems feasible they might bring out a replacement. IMO it should have traction control with that 255hp engine. Anyway, I have another year in my lease so the 2001 model will be in my driveway next Spring. And I have been a loyal SHO driver for the last decade!

    Your post was very much appreciated.
  • brakes seem a bit mushy, but it is fun to squeeze them slowly until stop is achieved...any comments?

    100mph at 3700rpm...leaves room to go faster, but I dont trust the steering agility that much as it seems to take some effort to point it precisely. it this typical for front drive? i am not dissatisfied really, as i knew it wasn't a real sports car.

    Mach "mock" stereo system is a bit weak in the treble area...or is it my 46 yr old ears?
  • oxmeadoxmead Posts: 79
    We've had the wagon for 2 months now. There were a few problems, like a hood out of line(fixed), a squeek in the headliner(fixed), the first recall(fixed). I'm wondering what others are getting for gas mileage with the duratec engine. It runs great but seems to suck gas quickly, about 120 miles from full to half. We did receive a nice emergency kit from Mercury. Did the Taurus people get one too?
  • tractiontraction Posts: 141
    Out here in the West we have speed limits of 75 on the major highways outside the urban areas, LA to Phoenix, LA to San Fran, etc. 85mph is typical on these roads, even the 18 wheelers are doing 80. It isn't unusal to to get up to 90 or 95 when passing.

    I drove a rental '00 Taurus with the FFV Vulcan V-6 from LA to Phoenix and set the cruise control for 85. Did 95 to 100 a couple of times. The car is still quiet and stable at those speeds.
  • adkdadkd Posts: 1
    We are trying to decide between two cars. One is a 96 Taurus GL with 68,000 miles, two owners (it was a fleet car for 3 years), worn interior, needs new tires, but otherwise in good shape. The second is a 97 Taurus GL with 102,000 miles, one owner/driver, ABS brakes, new tires/brakes. The price for eachis about the same. Question is, how many more miles can we expect to get out of a 97 with more than 100,000 miles already?
  • robnisrobnis Posts: 78
    I remember as a kid my dad saying that American cars are built for 100,000 miles. Do the rest of you readers concur? If so, adkd, maybe you could consider another vehicle. I have had Taurus' one year after they first came out in 1986 (4 LX's and 6 SHO's as my wife drove the LX's before she got her Maxima GLE. We never put more than about 50-60 K on them and traded them while they had some value. Although we never had any serious problems, the 1989 and 1991 SHO had warped rotors which were fixed under warranty.

    ADKD, may I urge you to check if the timing belt was changed at or prior to the 100K miles. If you are still set on one or the other, at least have a mechanic go over. An alternative would be to consider a used Honda,Toyota, etc if you are willing to consider an import. Best wishes.
  • zslickzslick Posts: 11
    It is my understanding that both Taurus engines, Vulcan and Duratec, use metal chains instead of rubber belts to drive the camshaft and, therefore, do not require periodic replacement. A little noisier perhaps, but one less thing to have to spend money on down the road.
  • any idea on what causes small black dots sized from tiny to ink tip size that seem to be under the clearcoat on pass. side hood and fender? less than 800 mi on car. have not waxed and mequiars cleaner/wax, bug/tar remover did not faze. did not notice the one time that i did mequiar's final inspection cleaning.
  • bdesaibdesai Posts: 24
    Currently I own a `88 Mazda 626(5sp)and a `98 Toyota Camry. The Mazda has 166K miles on it and still drives like a dream. I love the Mazda `cause its all paid for a long time ago, I pay $267 per year only for liability insurance on it, pay $45 a year taxes on it and gives 26 to 34 miles/gallon mileage. I know that driving a car can't get any cheaper than that. BUT, I am getting the itch to get a new car and so went to the Ford dealer last week to test drive a Taurus with the hopes to give an american manufacturer a chance since I'm hearing that they have come a long way lately in closing the quality gap.
    Boy, was I disappointed in the Taurus. Given, it had the inferior 2V/cylinder engine and not the duratec, but when used to the Camry or the old faithful 626, the Taurus felt way behind in noise, vibration, harshness, sophistication and more importantly the quality of workmanship! Everytime I braked, the steering column vibrated and when I asked the salesperson why that was so, he told me that all Tauruses do that to some degree. My conclusion was that after getting used to my two cars there is NO WAY that I would buy a Taurus even if it were much cheaper than comparable japanese/german sedans.
    I would like to add though to Fords credit that my experience test driving the new FOCUS was much different. Now, this is a much more sophisticated piece of engineering. My two cents :-)
  • sable93sable93 Posts: 107
    Inferior engine? I think not. It might not be brand new technology, but the Vulcan engine is not inferior.

    Also, what are you gauging workmanship from? My '97 Taurus is one of the best cars I've ever been in, and definitely the best I've ever driven.
  • indytabindytab Posts: 32
    I bought a 2000 Taurus SE about 4 weeks ago and I have not had even the remotest sense of vibration in the steering column from breaking or anything else for that matter. I also test drove several Taurus models with different options and did not feel any vibrations during breaking. All were smooth in driving and breaking. Either the particular car you drove was a defect off the assembly line or perhaps it had been driven over curbs ruining the alignment.

    The Taurus may "feel" the road more than some sedans, but I don't like "boats" that float over the road leaving you to wonder if the tires are even touching pavement. As for other aspects of workmanship, look at Edmund's reviews of family sedans; they didn't seem to find the flaws you did on your test drive.

    (I also looked at the Focus, but didn't test drive it, because it felt awfully cramped for room in comparison).

    Try going to another (hopefully more knowledgable) dealer and test drive a different Taurus.
  • slunarslunar Posts: 479
    Taurus_2000SEL: I'd guess that those spots are overspray from the paint booth. They probably painted a black or dark blue car just after yours and for some reason droplets sprayed on your car. I bought a Maroon Ford years ago that had a fuzzy yellow stripe on the right front fender. The yellow was recognizable as one of the other colors for that car. Fortunately this was the days before clearcoat so I easily polished the yellow paint off of my car.
  • tractiontraction Posts: 141
    I travel a lot for business and rent a lot of cars including new Camrys, Accord and Taurus'. I have driven a LOT of 2000 Taurus' and have never felt any vibrations that you described. In fact the Taurus' have performed better than the Camry's I have rented. The Camry has terrible handling, lots of tire squeal around corners. The Taurus' have always been solid without any rattles.

    I think the base engine in the Taurus (Vulcan V6) is MUCH better than the base engine in the Camry (4 cylinder).

    To each his own.
  • sable93sable93 Posts: 107

    I agree with you. While I do realize that there are more exciting engines around, the base engine in the Taurus is better than a lot of the competition, and it manages to get great gas mileage.
  • drove on a twisty narrow road up in the coastal mountain here in montecito and was surprised how well the 2000 sel took the tight turns with unnoticeable lean or any complaint. the turning radius had seemed unfortunately larger than i desired, not the small car 180 degree w/o sweat, but the road switchbacks were no problem. Does the taurus have a significantly longer wheelbase than other small or midsize cars?

    the tiny dark paint spots on the silver frost, very hard to see, but "slunar" comments above about overspray at factory could be correct. I wonder what the sequence of events for painting is at the soon is clear coat applied after the layer of paint? Should I dig out the points myself and touch up or go to the hassle of dealer, ford (purchased via broker carsdirect, which taking a lot of political heat from jealous dealer salesfolk and manufacturers who want to go direct also. Talk about lack of a free market! So much for republican/libertarian principles in the real world of politics. Maybe the courts (judges appointed by pols) will be pro consumer...not!?
  • matramatra Posts: 5
    Last week at 4:00AM on both accounts I hit a deer on Wed. and a raccoon on Thurs. total damage to my 2000 SEL/gold/loaded, one month replace left fender/hood/headlight/fascia...all will be aftermarket paint...BASF....I wll keep you posted...but this car may be history for me...
    I was very happy with aspects of the car, so I may at least consider another...
  • johng13johng13 Posts: 1
    I have read many of the comments regarding the Taurus ('95 - '00), as well as the Chevy Malibu. Most of the Taurus comments have been favorable, but I can hardly agree. I previously owned an '89 Taurus wagon and had very few problems with it. In Oct., '99, I purchased a used '98 "Program" vehicle, supposedly checked out by Ford with a fine toothed comb. I have had brake problems (squeaking, vibration). The dealer says "I don't notice anything unusual". A brake shop says that when the pads need changing, the rear rotors need to be turned and this should fix the problem - hopefully.

    More recently, I have had more troubling problems - electrical in nature. On five separate occasions, the car has nearly stalled, with the "Check Engine" and Low Fuel lights flashing on and off. The radio and clock reset themselves. The dealer cannot see any errors on the computer, and says there is nothing he can do and no TSB's on this problem. It makes me nervous to drive this car any distance.

    I've been thinking about dumping the Ford in favor of a '98 Chevy Malibu. I've read some pretty scary user comments about this vehicle also. Makes me think twice about making that move. Bad brakes, leaking headlights, strange clunking noises, tire problems. ...

    I have always supported American cars. May be time for a Toyota, Honda or Nissan.
  • tractiontraction Posts: 141
    johng13 - if you want to see scary, check out the "Accord Problems" board here on Edmunds. The 2000 Accord has quite a few problems with the transmissions, engines, rattles, stalling, engines not starting because of a "fuel boilover" problem, etc. Several people with brand new 2000 Accords have had to have their transmissions replaced after only a few thousand miles. I don't think buying a domestic or import guarantees you anything.

    Buying a used car is always a gamble, the dealer can go over the car with a fine tooth comb but that won't reveal everything.

    good luck!
  • heavenboundheavenbound Posts: 39
    If you want to get away from the Taurus and get a newer used car the Chevy Lumina has a good tract record for reliability and safety. Good Luck!
  • danielj3danielj3 Posts: 19
    I would recommend that you look at the 00 Taurus/
    Sable duo. They come with deals waiting to be had,
    offer a great value for the money and lower insurance premiums than that the Japanese cars.
    I recently bought a Merc. Sable 00 Premium SW and
    I got what I believe is a good deal. This is my
    third new car. Had a 91 Toyota Camry, 98 Mazda MPV van before. The MPV was totally Japanese and
    very unreliable. The Camry lasted almost 8 years
    without a mechanical problem. The body did not fare as well. Insurance was high on it.
  • danni454danni454 Posts: 4
    I have replaced 3 transmissions at great expense
    in my Taurus wagon. Every one at a different transmission shop just as they go out of warrenty.
    The shops say that these Fords have defective
    transmissions and that is where most of their
    transmission work comes from. The car has 105,000 easy miles. If it's not the transmission it's some other problem. The seats are very comfortable which is great while waiting for the wreaker driver. This car is so terribly unreliable. It has left us on the side of the road so many times! We are scared to drive it across town. I would never ever buy a Ford again. For what we have spent in parts and labor we could have had a Mercedes or other high end car. I wouldn't wish one of these cars on my worst enemie
  • tractiontraction Posts: 141
    for comparisons sake I've been following several different boards, you should see the problems with the Accord to see some real tranny nightmares. Here is a recent post by a new 2000 Accord owner, he has had two trannys in only 6200 miles....this is about a brand new 2000 Accord not a 10 year old used car with zillion miles....This is a post about a 2000 Accord==>>> "Was waiting to see how the "new" remanufactured tranny was going to work out in my 2000 accord V6. It was replaced at 5200 miles. I now have 6200 miles and it needs work again. It has been skipping and slipping since I got the car back from the dealer (they had it for 27+ days). ....."<<<===2000 Accord

    Have any of you 2000 Taurus owners had their
    transmissions replaced twice already like the above 2000 Accord owner?
  • danni454danni454 Posts: 4
    the difference is that Honda, a company with a well deserved reputation for reliablity and quality, will admit that they have a problem and take care of it. Rather then continue to build and sell obviously inferior and defective designs.
  • toddperntoddpern Posts: 2
    I am currently in the process of determining the right car for me and have limited my choices to three vehicles. 1. 2000 Ford Taurus SEL, 2. 2000 Subaru Outback Wagon or 3. 2000 Pontiac Grand Prix.

    I have driven the Taurus and liked the feel, cost and safety feature. Although, I am thinking it's may be too big, and there may be too many of them on the market and will have poor resale value down the line when I want to sell or trade it. Any thoughts on this?

    The Outback looks nice, has good room for hauling cargo and bikes, and has All-time All Wheel Drive. The negative about it is it's quite a bit more expensive than the Taurus and it may not handle as nicely. I also am wondering if I'll like not having a trunk. I'm used to storing a lot of stuff in the trunk and may be discouraged by the station wagon's exposed area.

    Lastly, the Pontiac Grand Prix. It's a sharp and powerful car. But I've hear nothing but bad things about the noises the vehicle makes (especially the dash when it is either really hot outside or really cold). I don't know much about it's performance aside from the fact that last year's model (1999) was ranked very low, but they don't say much about this year.

    I guess the main thing I'm having trouble with in my decision is that it seems that all car reports or evaluations say things differently. Consumer Reports may say one thing and then another publication or website will say something else.

    Does anyone have any good recommendations that will help sway my decision?

  • regfootballregfootball Posts: 2,166
    Avoid the Pontiac. Not because it isn't a good car, but because its just kinda tacky. Of course this is a personal taste issue but hey, they are somewhat too flamboyant. The Taurus looks tasteful for a y2k car.

    The Subaru is too spendy unless you get a good lease deal. Also, no v6 yet I'm aware of. Stick with the v6. the all wheel drive is nice but hey, u got by without it before.

    Go with the Taurus. Resale is not an issue because you get the car for a reasonable price to begin with. Plus it looks good and with the Duratec is a good runner.
  • sable93sable93 Posts: 107

    I don't think any of the Taurus transmission problems happened with under 10K miles. Most people have problems after the warranty expires (3 years.) These Accords are having problems within the first few months. There is a big difference between replacing a transmission with 70K miles on it, and one with 5200 miles on it. I'd bet if the Taurus' transmission had failed so quickly, instead of many years down the road, Ford would have replaced them as well, and admitted they had a problem.
  • danni454danni454 Posts: 4
    I agree, there is alot of difference between a transmission failing at 70k or 5K. At 5k it's under warranty at 70k it's not and comes out of your pocket. That's what makes the Fords disposible cars. They just aren't made to last very long. It is best to sell a Ford before it goes out of warrant as my experience with my Taurus has proven.
  • regfootballregfootball Posts: 2,166
    I'll be the first admit a Ford is a 70-75 thousand mile car before it may need some work. But by then you should expect to put some $$ into a car. I also think that by 75k miles I've gotten bored with what I'm driving and want to get a new one anyway.
  • barjonbarjon Posts: 27
    Exactly 8 weeks from the day I placed the order, my new SEL was finally delivered to me on Saturday, and it's everything I expected. The car handles very well, the 24V engine has plenty of get-up-and-go, the transmission is very smooth, and the Mach audio system sounds great. The car seems solidly built without a single squeek, rattle or strange vibration.

    It's still early at only 300 miles, so we'll see if I'm still as happy at 50,000 and 100,000 miles. Since this is a car I'd like to hang on to for a while, I opted for the Premium Care extended warranty for 5 years/75,000 miles.
  • indytabindytab Posts: 32
    I got into our Taurus SE because of the $4K incentive for 95 WS blown headgaskets, but I enjoy the car more the longer I drive it. I just hope it has better reliability than the Windstars. I know that past Tauruses had similar headgasket and transmission woes, but the engine is different.

    Does anyone know if the transmission used in the 2000 models have a track record? It is amazing how many Tauruses I see on the road these days. Almost as many as the Chevy Malibu. I test drove the Malibu and generally liked it, but I think the Taurus has more features for the money.
This discussion has been closed.