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I'm a big NASCAR fan and there is a rumor site that's pretty credible in most cases.

Jayski's

They are taking about the Taurus not being retired for maybe longer then we might think. Like maybe the 500 might not replace it.

I guess we will have to wait and see.
 
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500 even sounds better than the taurus and will bring more publicity to it, but I doubt the 500 is aimed at most nascar fans.

here's the blurb so you dont end up searching through the page like I did:
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Bye-Bye Taurus in 2006-2007? UPDATE 2 NO: Ford Motor Co. plans to phase out its midsize Taurus by 2006 or 2007, and three vehicles under development will replace it, according to people involved in the plans. Two of them will go on sale next year: the Five Hundred, a large, Audi-like sedan, and the Freestyle, a combination sport-utility vehicle and station wagon that shares a similar European styling and will replace the Taurus wagon. This week at the media preview of the New York International Automobile Show, Ford executives will release the first pictures of the Futura, a midsize car aimed at the perennial champions of the car market, the Honda Accord and the Toyota Camry. The Futura is to be introduced in 2005 and will offer a hybrid version that supplements its gasoline engine with electric power.(Star Tribune). NOTE: 'If' this happens, no idea what Ford would use in NASCAR and not looking to guess, have seen images of the Five Hundred, as posted here.(4-16-2003)
UPDATE: A Taurus badged race car will be utilized in NASCAR competition in the 2004 season, according to Greg Specht, manager, North American Racing Operations Ford Racing Technology. “I can say for the record that we’ll be racing a Taurus in ’04,” said Specht regarding the future of the Taurus. “The Taurus is changing, the production car – the showroom car, is changing in 2004. And our race car is being changed to reflect those differences. According to NASCAR rules, any car a manufacturer wants to use in competition must be submitted for approval to the Daytona Beach, Fla. sanctioning body no later than July 1 the year prior to its desired rollout. That means that if Ford wants to run a redesigned Ford Taurus in 2004, it must be in NASCAR’s hands by July 1, 2003. Asked if the Taurus might be replaced with another make after 2004, Specht replied, “I can say for sure that we’re going to race a Taurus in ’04.” (Ford Racing)(4-17-2003)
UPDATE 2: stumbled upon a Speed Channel show this morning, Autoline Detroit [Sunday's at 10am, re-air on Tuesday at 8:30am], where Ford Marketing Manager Amy Marentic representative was on the show hosted by John McElroy. They were discussing Fords future plans, including the new Ford 500. Marentic was asked if the Ford Taurus would still be made in 2005 and what the future was for the car and if it would have a 'farewell'. Marentic said the Taurus was here to stay and that Ford was not discontinuing the Taurus brand. Currently seen on Detroit Public Television, Autoline Detroit is hosted by industry observer and expert John McElroy. Join John and a panel of reporters each week as they discuss the latest news out of Detroit and interview a top industry insider, more info about the show at Speed Channel or www.autolinedetroit.tv(2-22-2004)[/b]
 

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QUOTE
News In an evident about-face, Ford has decided to keep Taurus and the Mercury Sable in showrooms through 2009. Earlier reports had these cars moving to fleet-only status at mid-decade to make room for the 2006-model Ford Futura and similar Mercury and Lincoln sedans based on the midsize Mazda 6 platform. Ford is also about to launch the rear-drive Five Hundred and Mercury Montego sedans, which are Volvo-based and slightly larger than Taurus/Sable. So why keep the old home-grown midsizers? We can only guess that Ford planners want to hedge their bets. Regardless, Taurus/Sable production will be cut in half once Ford's Chicago factory is retooled to build the Five Hundred/Montego. The Atlanta Taurus/Sable plant will carry on, though sources say it may drop the slow-selling wagon at some point.

The Futura and its sisters will come from Ford's plant in Hermosillo, Mexico, which had been supplying some Focus models. As a result, all North American Focuses will built at Ford's Wayne, Michigan factory starting with the revised 2005 models due in early '04.

Futura will borrow styling cues from the recent "427" concept sedan. It's said to be a less sporty drive than the parent Mazda 6; so, too, the Mercury and Lincoln versions expected during 2005 as early '06 models. Ford eyes Futura sales at some 150,000 a year.

We've already had a look at the '05 Five Hundred and Montego, so we can confirm two trim levels and a choice of rear drive or AWD. All use the latest "Duratec 30" update of Ford's familiar twincam 3.0-liter V6. Most will come with a new continuous variable automatic transmission (CVT), which is required on AWDs. Uplevel versions get a new 6-speed conventional automatic.

We'll have more details soon on all these new products, so keep checking back with us.[/b]
http://auto.consumerguide.com/auto/new/rev...ex.cfm/id/37568
 

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I think maybe your right. The 500 seems to compete on a different level than the taurus. It's somewhere between the Taurus and the Crown Vic.
 
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Yup, I think Ford would be incredibly dumb to kill the Taurus - it's cheap, the 500's not and, in all reality, the 500 is a higher class vehicle. Also - I didn't realize the 500 was RWD!
 

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I thought AWD was standard.
 

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Originally posted by slider5634@Feb 24 2004, 07:51 AM
I thought AWD was standard.
No, thankfully. The CVT is not standard either, but the other option is the 6-speed auto, which I must assume is a new transmission. The 500 is too large to be just a Taurus replacement. It is probably about as large as a Toyota Avalon. The Freestyle also is pretty big last I checked to replace the Taurus wagon, but hey, it has a hybrid option, which will certainly spark the interest of those greenies across the nation.
 

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It'll truly be a sad sad day if they retire the raging bull.
Been a faithful companion to me for many years, and i've been thinking about buying another
 

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I saw and sat in, the Five Hundred (Ford doesn't use the numerals) at the Chicago Auto show.

It's either front wheel drive, or all wheel drive (for a few dollars more...). It does have a sideways 3.0 Duratec V-6, and either a six speed automatic or a CVT. The show staff wasn't clear as to which transmission would be standard, and which optional. Frankly, I don't think they knew; they're just hired talking heads. The trunk of the Five Hundred supposedly has a capacity of 21 cubic feet. That would make it about the biggest on the market. My wife's Grandma Marquis has 20.6, and it's been called "as big as they get".

The Freestyle is a "crossover", built on the same foundation as the Five Hundred sedan. I don't know why, but they refuse to call it, or even refer to it, as a station wagon. But, it takes the place of a station wagon in the model lineup, with 3 row seating, all forward-facing, and quite a snazzy interior. The second and third row seats folded down into the floor to make a flat load space. Ford's display cars all seemed to use a cream colored soft leather interior, which just oozed luxury.

My only real complaint is the engine; these cars can't be featherweights, having AWD available, and I think 3.0 liters is a little short on gumption. I hope the 3.5 Duratec finds its way into the lineup if I ever decide to buy one.

When the Freestyle hits the market, I wonder what will happen to the Explorer? Looks like competing models to me.
 

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Originally posted by Sablewagon@Feb 24 2004, 06:38 PM
I saw and sat in, the Five Hundred (Ford doesn't use the numerals) at the Chicago Auto show.

It's either front wheel drive, or all wheel drive (for a few dollars more...). It does have a sideways 3.0 Duratec V-6, and either a six speed automatic or a CVT. The show staff wasn't clear as to which transmission would be standard, and which optional. Frankly, I don't think they knew; they're just hired talking heads. The trunk of the Five Hundred supposedly has a capacity of 21 cubic feet. That would make it about the biggest on the market. My wife's Grandma Marquis has 20.6, and it's been called "as big as they get".

The Freestyle is a "crossover", built on the same foundation as the Five Hundred sedan. I don't know why, but they refuse to call it, or even refer to it, as a station wagon. But, it takes the place of a station wagon in the model lineup, with 3 row seating, all forward-facing, and quite a snazzy interior. The second and third row seats folded down into the floor to make a flat load space. Ford's display cars all seemed to use a cream colored soft leather interior, which just oozed luxury.

My only real complaint is the engine; these cars can't be featherweights, having AWD available, and I think 3.0 liters is a little short on gumption. I hope the 3.5 Duratec finds its way into the lineup if I ever decide to buy one.

When the Freestyle hits the market, I wonder what will happen to the Explorer? Looks like competing models to me.
No way! The Explorer has a full frame underneath it, while the Freestyle is just another stupid SUV wannabe that has no balls and no frame. It's the same thing as the Highlander.
 

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The Taurus is gone. It will probably be produced for a few years beyond 2004 for fleet sales (government and rental) like the ZX2.

The Five-Hundred won't be a direct competitor to cars like the Accord or the Camry or the Impala, but to bigger cars like the Avalon, the Chrysler 300, and the Lesabre. The Freestyle will takeover the Taurus Wagon's market.

There won't be a Ford sedan that will fit exactly in the Taurus' slot, since the Futura will be smaller than the Taurus. I don't think Ford has a platform that's in between the Mazda6's and the Five-Hundred's.
 

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Civicex is right. the 500 and Futura will replace it. I originally heard that the taurus would be replaced in '07, but I guess it's been pushed back until '09.

Sablewagon, how did you sit in the 500 in Chicago, since the car was only a show display?
 

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Originally posted by silvapain@Feb 24 2004, 10:14 PM
Sablewagon, how did you sit in the 500 in Chicago, since the car was only a show display?
There were several Five Hundreds there, as well as some Montegos and a cutaway Freestyle. Certainly, I didn't sit in the cars on the turntables, but I sat in a dark Navy Blue sedan on the floor. My daughter (a "special" girl) was given a "Clifford" stuffed dog by the Ford exhibit crew; as part of the "ceremony", we were able to get into and sit in a Five Hundred. Usually, they were locked.

I have pictures, but this board won't allow me to post them.

If ya want, I'll e-mail them...
 

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To replace the Taurus with the 500 is retarded. Ford is gonna smack themselves when their sales go down because they replaced a perfectly good sedan with something bigger and more expensive.
 

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...and better. You have to admit that the 500 is simply a better car (I hate to say this as much as you guys hate to read it). The futura will be the car for those who want a cheaper version. The taurus' sales in the past few years have predominantly been as fleet vehicles. Ford needs to update the image of it's car line to get a hold in the increasing performance sedan market. The taurus currently can't fill that need.

I love the taurus as much as anyone else in this club (well, almost anyone else), but these are the facts.
 

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Will the 500 be on the same price field as the Taurus? That will ultimatly be the desiding factor. If Ford Drops thier 20-28K Line and doesn't replace it, they'll loose some business.

-Dan
 

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There is no "Taurus replacement." The Five-Hundred is bigger, more luxurious, and most likely significantly more expensive. The Futura is smaller, sportier, and probably costs about the same as the old Contour SE.

A Taurus-shopper will have to compromise and choose the bigger car or the smaller car... and that car will be the "Taurus replacement" for him.
 

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That's tarded man. I say when Ford stops Taurus production that we boycott Ford and never buy a car from them again.
 
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