Seriously, someone needs to buy this.
2019 was its last model year, after which don't expect to see the Ford Taurus ever again. It's fine not to care much, especially since Ford let the nameplate go to waste by introducing the Five Hundred, only to change back to Taurus when that plan didn't go so well. The final and fourth-generation model arrived in 2010, along with a new SHO (Super High Output) variant boasting a 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 producing 365 horsepower and 350 lb-ft of torque. But its immediate predecessor was even cooler.
The third-gen Taurus SHO came to the scene in 1996 and unlike its own predecessor, its overall exterior styling didn't stand out as much. The only major differences from the regular jellybean-shaped Taurus were its unique seats, alloy wheels, bumpers, and Yamaha V8.
This was the only V8-powered Taurus SHO model ever built and only lasted for three model years. Unfortunately, this generation just didn't achieve the popularity levels of its predecessors. It's too bad, really, because its 3.4-liter V8, rated at 235 hp, came with engine heads from Yamaha and its block from Cosworth. In fact, the engine was specifically developed for this model and wasn't used for anything else.
Power was directed to the front wheels through a four-speed automatic. No manual was offered. Engineers also modified the sedan's suspension for a better overall driving experience. The final third-gen Taurus SHO rolled off the production line on June 18, 1999, and the next SHO didn't appear until a decade later. Again, blame the lame Five Hundred and Ford's new conservative attitude towards mid- and full-size sedans.
The oldest 1996-1999 Taurus SHO examples are now nearly a quarter-century old, but this 1999 example is in good enough shape to be included in Mecum Auctions' Indy Fall event next weekend. With an estimated price of $5,500 to $6,500, this thoroughly maintained example recently underwent service at a Ford dealership and still has its original black exterior paint. The grey leather interior is also in remarkable condition and packs features such as a 6-disc CD changer, premium sound system, and a moonroof.
Sure, the exterior and interior styling may not appeal to everyone, but this car is still special. Ford never stuffed a V8 in its family-focused Taurus before this and never did so again.