The major story for the 2008 Taurus is the engine. Gone is the anemic 203 HP 3.0 liter Duratec V6, and in it’s place is Ford’s excellent 3.5 liter Duratec – good for a not-too-shabby 260 HP. When you have over 3600 lbs to move, you’ve gotta have some ponies, and the new engine does the job. No one will ever confuse the 08 Taurus for fast, but it does just fine now.
Ford is playing the safety angle hard for the 08 Taurus – the crash test scores were practically off the charts. It certainly can’t play the style card, because even with the addition of the Fusion-esque grille, the Taurus is not a particularly attractive car. It’s not hard on the eyes, but rather boring and soulless looking. Did Ford do enough to make the 08 Taurus a worthy competitor to the Toyota Avalon and Chrysler 300? Read on to find out.
2008 Ford Taurus Specs
- 260 HP 3.5 liter V6 engine
- 6 speed automatic transmission
- FWD or AWD
- Side and Curtain airbags standard
- Curb weight: 3646 lbs
- EPA says: 18 mpg city / 28 mpg highway
2008 Ford Taurus Reviews
Motor Trend reviews the 2008 Ford Taurus and writes – ‘The Five Hundred’s wobbliest wheel was its anemic performance, and the new 3.5-liter V-6 with 263 horsepower straightens that right out. Bang down the throttle pedal and the car forcefully surges-it’s not fast, maybe 7.6 seconds to 60, but it’s in the game. The six-speed transmission (now the only choice, what with the CVT being nixed from the AWD configuration) is a nimble cog swapper, maybe not Lexus-magical in its ministrations, but certainly fast on its feet. What’s interesting here is that the whole powertrain shebang is now mounted, not to the front subframe at all, but directly to the chassis via hydraulic mounts. The main point to this is to relieve the subframe of some 600 pounds, and this, along with a 10mm increase in front suspension travel and considerable retuning, has rendered the Taurus’s ride startlingly improved, driven back-to-back against the Five Hundred.’
Edmunds reviews the 2008 Ford Taurus and writes – ‘On the upside, though, the crummy continuously variable transmission that was previously connected to the all-wheel-drive Five Hundred has been tossed into the crusher, replaced by the Ford Edge’s six-speed automatic. (Both front- and all-wheel-drive Taurus models get this transmission.) This six-speed auto shifts up through the gears with wonderful smoothness, but it’s calibrated for fuel economy at all times, so it’s slow to downshift, and it often requires you to floor the accelerator just to get the tranny to drop down a gear and unleash the rather noisy 260 horses.’