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2014 Mazda MAZDA3, Meteor Gray Mica, 12 mi., $22,095
Review of the 2013 Ford Taurus
IntroductionFord has even more refined its flagship sedan Taurus for the 2013 model year. The Taurus now offers better fuel economy - least 31 mpg highway with the new 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine - enhanced design, improved craftsmanship, more technology and impressive driving dynamics. The new Ford Taurus SHO is sportiest model yet to wear SHO badge with a unique, performance-inspired design, road manners to match and even more differentiation within the Taurus lineup.
Exterior Design and Special FeaturesThe brand new 2013 Ford Taurus is equipped with SYNC with MyFord Touch featuring clear, colorful LCD screens and steering wheel-mounted five-way toggles that can be personalized to display information relevant to each driver through voice command. Further, the new features include heated steering wheel, multicontour seats with Active Motion, an exclusive Taurus-class offering which reduces fatigue with subtle rolling massage pattern, intelligent access with push-button start, auto high beams in headlamps, rain sensing wipers, rear view camera and rear window power sunshade. A more muscular hood, wider wheels and tires lend an athletic stance to the car. Rear quarter panels house larger and full LED taillamps distinguish it with from other vehicles.
EngineThe 2013 Ford Taurus offers a choice of three new engines. Taurus is the first car in Ford's North American lineup to offer the advanced 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine, rated at an estimated 240 horsepower and 270 lb ft of torque delivering a highway fuel economy of 31 mpg. The 3.5-liter V6 engine, standard in Taurus SE, SEL and Limited, yields an expected increase of 2 mpg highway with 10 percent more horsepower than the current model. The EcoBoost 3.5-liter V6 drivetrain which motivates the Taurus SHO is the Ford's most powerful EcoBoost engine churning out the power of 365 horses and 350 lb ft of torque. With all-wheel drive, it drives up to 25 mpg on the highway. Every Taurus model is equipped with an efficient six-speed automatic transmission. The 2.0-liter Ecoboost engine is teamed with a new 6F35 gearbox featuring active transmission warm-up and a "dot nozzle" internal clutch friction material configuration. The Taurus with a 3.5-liter Ti-VCT V6 engine features the 6F50 six-speed transmission, while the Taurus SHO sport sedan is mated with a high-capacity 6F55 version of this gearbox to the twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6.
SafetyThe new Taurus has earned an Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Top Safety Pick rating. It is made up of high-strength and ultra-high-strength steels, including boron. Apart from the usual safety features, it includes Side Protection And Cabin Enhancement (SPACE) Architecture, enhanced airbag restraints with optimized tethering and venting to tailor deployment force to occupant size, position and seat belt status, Safety Canopy with rollover sensor, SOS Post-Crash Alert System and AdvanceTrac with Electronic Stability Control. Further drive aid technologies like adaptive cruise control, collision warning with brake support and Blind Spot Information System (BLIS) take the new Taurus to a whole new level.