New Ford Taurus Offers Premium Technology to a Mainstream Market
The original Ford Taurus was a pretty advanced car design wise when it was introduced in the 80’s. Since then the car lost the distinctive futuristic character and eventually blended in with all the other full-sized family sedans. Ford even dropped the name a few years ago feeling that another radical design departure for the car might not resonate with consumers who grew accustom to what a Taurus looked like. Eventually though the company couldn’t deny the equity in the name and brought the Taurus back.
PSFK had a chance to drive the new 2010 Taurus SHO last night. While the design of the car makes a slight nod to the original from the 80’s, the real futuristic bits are under the sheet metal. The SHO model we drove is the performance version of the sedan that is meant to have broad appeal. This car had a few special technology options, but Ford has made premium level technology available thru the Taurus model range. There are four systems that improve driving safety that are particularly interesting.
Adaptive Cruise Control senses another vehicle ahead on the highway and automatically adjusts the Taurus’s speed to maintain a safe driving distance. The Blind Spot Information System signals the driver to a vehicle potentially in their blind spot with warning lights in the corresponding side mirror. Collision warning with brake support provides visual and auditory warning if the car senses danger of a head on collision. The vehicle also switches the brakes to a setting allowing for a quicker and harder stop. Finally, the cross traffic alert system uses a variety of sensors in the back of the car to determine if it is safe to pull out of a parking space. The system also judges distances to other parked cars when backing up and alerts the driver to their proximity.
Many of these feature have been available on luxury cars but the Taurus shows that this once premium technology is moving down to other vehicle classes.