Plenty of large sedans boast abundant power, but the redesigned 2013 Ford Taurus lineup couples an array of high-performance engine choices with undisputed best-in-class fuel mileage. Along with its segment-leading blend of performance and economy, Ford’s new full-size flagship leaves competitors looking like specks in the rear-view thanks to enhanced technology, sharper driving dynamics, refined styling inside and out and a broader swath of standard and available features.
Honoring the status of the Taurus as the carmaker’s signature sedan, the designers and engineers at Ford approached their work on the new 2013 Taurus as something far greater than a mere mid-cycle refresh, ultimately delivering levels of quality, craftsmanship and content buyers expect from high-priced luxury sedans. From cutting-edge driver aids such as Active Park Assist, to the intuitive technology of SYNC with MyFord Touch, to up-level exclusives like heated and cooled multi-contour front seats with Active Motion Massage, the new Taurus outclasses segment rivals at every turn.
Ford offers the Taurus in four versions: The SE, the sporty SEL, the luxurious Limited and the road-conquering SHO.
The big news for 2013 can be found under the hood where the Taurus becomes the first Ford car to offer the hyper-efficient 2.0-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder engine. Benefiting from turbocharging and gasoline direct injection, the 2.0-liter EcoBoost cranks out 237 hp and 250 lb/ft of torque – figures that compare favorably to larger-displacement V6 engines. Even more surprising, the new four-cylinder EcoBoost is expected to return a class-leading 31 mpg highway, fuel economy on par with many sedans with less power.
The standard 3.5-liter V6 engine also receives an increase in power and efficiency for 2013 thanks to the addition of twin independent variable camshaft timing (Ti-VCT). Output climbs to 290 hp (up from 263 hp) and 255 lb/ft of torque while fuel economy improves over last year’s 28 highway mpg.
The top-of-the-line Taurus SHO (Super High Output) continues to feature the most powerful EcoBoost engine in the Ford family – the twin-turbocharged, 365-hp EcoBoost 3.5-liter V6. Credit direct fuel injection for helping the SHO V6 deliver its 350 lb/ft of peak torque at a low and lag-free 1,500 rpm. Despite its bullish output, the EcoBoost V6 stays true to its fuel-sipping mandate, returning an EPA-estimated 25 mpg on the highway.
The three Taurus engines are each paired with a six-speed automatic transmission tuned to maximize off-the-line punch while bolstering fuel mileage at cruising speeds. AdvanceTrac with Electronic Stability Control is on hand to help keep the miles worry free on every road you travel. Instilling an extra degree of confidence no matter the weather, all-wheel drive is standard on the SHO and available throughout the lineup.
Looking to keep its flagship a showcase for the latest in driver aids, Ford has equipped the new Taurus with such advanced technology as Curve Control, which automatically reduces engine torque and applies the anti-lock brakes at all four wheels to slow the car when you enter a corner too quickly. Exclusive in this segment, the new Torque Vectoring Control system mimics the effect of a limited-slip differential by applying a slight amount of brakeforce at the inside front wheel to help you hold the line when accelerating out of a corner.
The list of available driver-assistance technology would look right at home on high-priced imported luxury sedans. Collision Warning with Brake Support employs the Adaptive Cruise Control system to alert the driver to slower traffic ahead, then boosts brake pressure to help shorten stopping distances. Cross-Traffic Alert uses the Blind Spot Information System to sense oncoming vehicles and warn the driver during backing maneuvers.
Ride and handling benefit from larger brakes, revised spring and damper rates and a quicker steering ratio on the Electronic Power-Assisted Steering, which is now standard throughout the Taurus lineup. Family security also comes standard on the Taurus, as proven by the current model’s selection as a “Top Safety Pick” by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
Climb inside and you’ll appreciate a new level of craftsmanship underscored by superior fit, new switchgear and upgraded soft-touch materials. Comfort takes center stage thanks to available power front seats with leather-trim, a heated steering wheel and a power rear sunshade. Ford has also upped the ante on available convenience technology with high-demand items including keyless entry, remote start, ambient lighting and a rear-view camera.
Crowning the slate of innovative technology on the new Taurus is the MyFord Touch connectivity system, which features a touch-screen mounted in the center stack and two supplemental screens fitted inside the instrument cluster. Working with the SYNC voice-activated entertainment and communication system, MyFord Touch lets you monitor vehicle systems, request turn-by-turn directions, text and make calls hands-free and even turn your Taurus into a WiFi hotspot for your family.
To differentiate the SHO even further from its siblings, the sportiest Taurus receives a wealth of exclusive upgrades for 2013. The new black mesh grille flanked by High Intensity Discharge (HID) headlamps conveys restrained aggression while the rear decklid spoiler, subtle SHO badges mounted in the front-fender coves and 19-inch premium painted alloy wheels (20-inch alloys are optional) speak of countless high-speed runs yet to come.
Once at speed, the new SHO gives you the confidence to test your mettle with a new SHO Performance Package that includes such highlights as a sport-tuned suspension, extreme-duty cooling system, performance brake pads and calipers and an Electronic Stability Control “Track Mode” with a true “Off” selection for freer wheeling when the rubber hits the raceway.
Enthusiasts are also sure to appreciate the reconfigured paddleshifters mounted on the steering wheel, another SHO exclusive. Based on feedback from SHO enthusiast clubs, the paddles now offer more intuitive operation with one paddle dedicated strictly to upshifts and the other to downshifts.
The new 2013 Ford Taurus line of full-size sedans reaches showrooms this spring. Be sure to contact us to schedule a test drive.