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Discussion Starter #1
It's time for a new vehicle and have decided on a wagon. I'm not a truck or SUV fan and my automotive roots have traditionaly been with early European cars. When I went researching Audi and Volvo products I was scared to death of the problems and parts availibility/costs. this promted me to consider a domestic product. Iwas quite impressed with Comsumer Reports comments as well as consumers input about the Taurus/Sable sedans and wagons. I've searched hi and low around here for almost two months and haven't found a '01-'02 wagon with the Duratech within a 300 mi. radius. Then yesterday I tripped into a '96-'97 Sable wagon for sale. I think it's an SE, for $2900 OBO. Outside is real clean, could'nt see inside and it needs tires.
Dose this car have the Vulcan and what are the pros/cons of that? I want to be able to pull a light trailer with a 400# street bike on it, plus the wife, dog and stuff..
I also need reliability, good parts availability and dealer service support if needed. I'm not convinced I can get this in the Euro makes.
How about performance parts, the Vucan has been around awile so I've read, there must be some things available.
Any input you folks have would be greatly appreciated and I thank you in advance. Happy Holidays! Jon, Ogden Utah..
 

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The Sable only came in GS and LS forms in those years. If its a GS, it has the Vulcan. LS has the Duratec. Both are very good, solid engines.

If you are used to more expensive, European cars, I'd say the Duratec engine is right for you. Eitherway, you cant lose, these engines will run 150,000 miles without much outside of an oil change every 3-5K. My parents have a 1997 Sable sedan and it has 103,000 miles. Its needed (in its whole life):

Tires twice (my burn outs LOL)
speed sensor (replaced by Ford for free!!)
front brakes once (needs the rotors turned again now though, but stops well)
Needs a tune up right now (runs well, just a precautionary action) and a windshield (damn gravel trucks doing 85 on the freeway).

Thats it. If you want good service, try to find a Ford, Lincoln/Mercury service department thats certified. Ford calls it "Blue Oval". That means that dealership has been recognized by Ford as having superior custumer relations.

Whatever used car you buy, be sure to get it checked out by a service depertment (NOT the dealer you're buying it from, if that is the case. If they insist they've already had it inspected and its fine, back away unless the agree for you to take it elsewhere for a non-biased, independant opinion).

Be carefull with towing. I believe wagons have 4-wheel disk brakes, and that'll help, but be sure that the weight of the trailer and cargo do not exceed Fords recomended limit. Also, I'd have an aftermarket trans cooler installed to prevent premature trans failure. Also, change trans fluid every 30K, like the owners manual suggests. DO NOT trust Jiffy Lube or some place like that. Take it to the Ford, Lincoln/Mercury dealer and be sure they replace the filter.
 

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I'd like to emphasize </span> Personally, I think every Taurus owner should have one anyway. These trannies are undercooled to begin with.
 

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If you are doing any kind of towing, get a duratec, and a trans cooler.

So, you want a wagon,

Now I will probably get blasted for this, but have you looked into the 96 (last year) full size GM wagons? (Chevy Caprice and Buick Roadmaster)

Before everyone says "What the F--- is he saying?!?!?" Have you really seen them? My uncle owns a 1996 Buick Roadmaster Wagon, and if you want power, comfort and room, this is the wagon for you. The chevy is also good, but the buick has all the goodies. Cliamte Control, leather, heated seats, CD, Air Ride Automatic Suspension... ETC..

And don't forget the LT-1 350, enough said.

I know the Taurus/Sable wagons are nice, but if I had my choice for a wagon.... A Roadmaster would be my choice, just for the size of it.
 

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TOWING - when doing this, try to use the direct drive, stay away from overdirve. OD for towing is hard as hell on any tranny. if it is a nice flat road, you might get away with using OD, but NEVER up hills.

The bull is fairly easy to work on and parts are readily available.

if you can afford something really expensive, the taurus might be less than what you want, but they are economical. Good on gas, easy to care for, and really, i can't say anything bad about them. Just be REALLY nice to the tranny, that is the biggest pitfall of the bull.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Hi Folks!
Thanks so much for the input on "Should I try a Taurus/Sable", the info has thus far been of great help.As soon as the snow stops kickin' butt around here I'm going to test drive a sedan and see what it's all about. Any more input you have is most welcome and I'd like to hear more about the Vulcan vs. Duratec as well. Do any of you know where road springs can be had for the Taurus/Sable Wagon?
Thanks again, Jon
 
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The Vulcan/Duratec debate has gone on for years. Each engine has it's pro's and cons. Both have roughly the same amount of aftermarket (very little, but you can find stuff if you're willing to look and wait). The Vuclan is a proven reliable engine. But the Duratec hasn't shown to have any major problems either.

If you do a search, you'll find MANY threads about this. If nothing else, try the archives.
 

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I'm a duratec owner. In fact I've never personally divern a vulcan powered vehicle. My Dad's Taurus has a 'tec, Wes's car is a 'tec, and my car is a Duratec as well. A moderatly moded Vulcan can hold it's own against a duratec, but the duratec is the newer and more powerful engine. As previously mentioned it also has a pretty good running record. You really don't hear people say they're dumping the bull because of an engine failure regardless of weather they have the 'tec or the vulcan. As also noted, it's the transmission that is the weak link. If you take care of it, it'll last you 100K+ miles fine, but just be prepaired to deal with it if it ever has a problem. A replacement Jasper Transmission (One of the best in the business) will run around $3500 installed, which will be the biggest single expense you could expect to see from the car.

-Dan
 
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IMO, I wouldn't buy a 96. There are those first year model bugs to deal with. Although very minor, some of them made it to the 97's.
 

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Ahh, another Utah member of the TCCA. I'm from Logan and i've seen a couple Duratec-powered Sables for sale around here. they're not wagons though..
 

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Originally posted by dant98@Dec 29 2003, 01:44 PM
A moderatly moded Vulcan can hold it's own against a duratec
HAHAHAHAHA

lol

sorry...
 

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Originally posted by rsgnome@Dec 29 2003, 03:16 PM
Ahh, another Utah member of the TCCA. I'm from Logan and i've seen a couple Duratec-powered Sables for sale around here. they're not wagons though..
First off, I love what you've done with the interior of your Taurus. Second, I though I should mention that I lived on Utah for a few months a while back but unfortuantly had to drive a base-model Monte Carlo owned by my brother (well not anymore, REPO ha ha).


Last year, I stayed in Provo, Utah and got a ticket in southern Utah the next day in my Zephyr for 90 MPH in a 70 zone. The officer was very freindly and dropped it down to 80 in a 70 and didnt write me up for many other things he theoreticly could have (insurance, exhaust, expired tags, etc).
 
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