Review: Ford Taurus X

Best as I can tell, the Ford Taurus X crossover vehicle is designed for the consumer who wants minivan features without the minivan exterior. Most models of this car come with a two-tone paint job that does not help the car appear sophisticated and classy. The specimen I drove was the top-of-the-line, Eddie Bauer Limited, in all black. With this paint job the car does present a decent profile. I think the three wide chrome bars that Ford is using on the nose of their vehicles now is basically “too loud” of a signature, but with the all black I do not mind as much.

Ford Taurus X

Inside the vehicle the Taurus X has lots of family friendly features. There is a built-in convex mirror that allows the driver a good view of what is happening in the third row of seats. This model has a DVD player that works with wireless headphones—or regular headphones for that matter. The second row of seats is a roomy set of captain’s chairs and a center console with cup holders, which makes transporting 4 adults quite comfortable. This center console does make the last row of seats much more difficult to access than in a mini-van, and I’m not sure kids could climb back there without some seat-folding help. Continue reading Review: Ford Taurus X

Review: Ford F250 Super Duty

You don’t get into a Ford F250 Super Duty, you climb into it. Opening the door, and hoisting yourself into the driver’s seat, you suddenly become a “truck driver”, whether you started out as one or not. Turn on the engine, hear the diesel engine grumble to a roar, and put it in gear. Everything about this truck says “Big and Tough,” and as the driver, you begin to take on that persona as well.

2008 Ford F250 Super Duty

I really wish I had a trailer of horses to tow, or a flat-bed filled to the brim with quads and toys, because I’m sure this truck would have delighted in the extra work required, not stopping for a moment to complain, but happily taking whatever you threw at it and asking where you wanted it delivered. It was certainly up for the task. Instead, I was stuck driving it through downtown Portland, navigating smaller cars like a Godzilla avoiding screaming people. For that purpose, I didn’t have as much appreciation for the size and power of the vehicle, as it did me little good (accept to annoy hybrid drivers with my gas guzzing–not that I like doing that.) Continue reading Review: Ford F250 Super Duty

2007 Ford Escape Hybrid

HYBRID OMG HYBRID!!! Did you say H$BR$D?

Let me first admit that I would like my next car to be a hybrid, and that I’m all for altering the gas-guzzling paradigm persistent among U.S. auto makers, but I have a hard time taking Ford serious. I drove the 2005 Escape Hybrid a few years ago and remember it being a most disappointing drive, so I was anxious to test out the 2007 and see what improvements were made, and how “earth-friendly” this car turned out to be.

2007 Ford Escape Hybrid

My first impressions were that I really like this size of SUV, so I gave it a huge bonus right out of the blocks. I think it’s a very livable car that provides reasonable space inside, while still maintaining an urban driving experience that doesn’t make you want to just go home. I like the subtle styling upgrades over the past two years, and say with confidence that it is a very attractive SUV for $26,000, especially for a hybrid. But sliding into a Ford almost always provides the exact same response: a moment of disappointment. I always hope that Ford will finally fix the many things that are wrong with their interior design, and finally produce an environment that I want to spend time in. With the Escape, I was again disappointed. I think the controls are too blocky and awkward, the tactile response is muted and dull, the accents look cheap and made of plastic, and it always takes me several minutes of playing with the driver’s seat before I feel comfortable. However, that’s the same with most Fords I’ve driven, so I won’t spend any more time on it.

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2007 Ford Shelby GT Mustang

Who wouldn’t want a 500 hp candy cane delivered within a week of Christmas. It’s big, red, shiny, and the most power I know of under $50,000. And every single person that sees it notices it. For those who are looking to over-compensate with their vehicle, look no further.

2007 Ford Shelby GT Mustang

I don’t think there was a single time someone walked by this car when I was either getting in or out and didn’t comment. The gas attendant, who saw it from afar, and staring at it as he walked up to take my order, merely said “That’s what I’m asking for for Christmas.” The homeless man who rode his bike/trailer combo by my house one afternoon only saw it from behind, and with the trunk open, but still was exclaiming about how hot my ride was from 20 feet away. Getting out at my friend’s house, at 8pm in the evening, elicited shouts from the neighbor porch, “Hey man, you wanna sell me your car!” Over and over again, this was the object of attention. And for anyone who rode in it, it held their attention the entire time.

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2008 Ford Taurus X

Take a Ford Freestyle, change the name to a former best-selling car, add an “X”, and well, throw in every feature that Ford offers and what do you have? The 2008 Ford Taurus X. An under-whelming, expensive, and generally uninspiring SUV. OK, that’s a little harsh, but it’s moves like this that demonstrates why American automobiles continue to fall at the hands of Japanese and even Korean automakers.

2008 Ford Taurus X

The Taurus was a great-selling car. Obviously people found it’s value-for-the-money to be about right, but for years, I saw people driving them thinking, “What kind of person walks into a Ford dealership and drives away in a Taurus? And are they content after their purchase?” I think this almost every time I see a Taurus. Who buys these? And now, with the Taurus X, filled to the brim with options, and a sticker at just over $38,000, I’m even more unsure.

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