Weekly Treasure: 1989 Ford Taurus SHO

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It costs only how much!?

The Ford Taurus, the mid-size sedan that literally once saved the automaker back in the late 1980s, is now gone. Like the Fiesta, Focus, and Fusion, the Taurus was the victim of Ford's desire to focus on trucks and SUVs in North America. The money saved from traditional cars, save for the Mustang, will be invested in electric vehicles and other future mobility technologies. It's the end of an era that was marked by several great cars. The Ford Taurus SHO was one of them.

Launched in 1989, the Taurus SHO was not your typical Taurus. It was a high-performance version with a different engine and unique styling. This first-generation Taurus SHO featured the hood from the slightly more upmarket Mercury Sable along with unique bumpers, side cladding, and fog lamps. It also had its own special wheel design. The interior was also upgraded by way of sports seats and an 8,000 rpm tachometer.

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Under the hood sat a Yamaha-built 3.0-liter V6 that redlined at 7,000 rpm and had a total of 220 horsepower and 200 lb-ft of torque. Power was sent to the front wheels through a five-speed manual transmission. This gearbox was actually designed and built by Mazda. So, in other words, an American family sedan with a mostly Japanese powertrain. It was an interesting combination no doubt, and the performance results were certainly impressive. Zero to 60 mph happened in 6.6 seconds and a quarter-mile time of 15 to 15.2 seconds. Top speed was about 143 mph. Although these figures are easily achievable today by smaller turbocharged engines, they were pretty impressive for 1989.

A second generation Taurus SHO appeared in '92, but it was really more of a significant facelift of the previous model. It was the same deal regarding the regular '92 Taurus. The Yamaha V6 and Mazda five-speed returned. Ford soon realized the lack of an automatic option was hurting sales, so it introduced one for '93. An updated V6, increased to 3.2-liters, also appeared.

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And then came the third-gen Taurus SHO in 1996. Instead of the V6, Ford went with a 3.4-liter V8 with 235 hp. The sole transmission was now a four-speed automatic. This Taurus SHO, like its predecessors, was definitely unique but it didn't attract anywhere near the same number of buyers as the regular Taurus did. Ford discontinued the Taurus SHO in 1999, before bringing it back in 2010.

This time, power came from a twin-turbo 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 with 365 hp and 350 lb-ft. Unlike the previous Taurus SHO, this one came standard with all-wheel drive. It was also larger and considered more of a full-size sedan. The Taurus SHO, along with the Taurus itself, was discontinued earlier this year. Today, the Taurus SHO, especially older models, are seeing a resurgence in popularity, but finding one in good condition can be a challenge. Fortunately, we found one.

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Craigslist

This 1989 Ford Taurus SHO is currently up for sale on Craigslist in San Francisco with a very decent price of $6,500, or best offer. Although it has 132,700 miles on its clock, the seller has taken excellent care of her and has recently done a complete restoration. The sale also includes all maintenance records and updates from the past 1,000 miles. The seller/restorer also frequented Cars and Coffee events where the car proved to be popular. Anyone looking for a potential future collector's car at a bargain price, your search can now end.

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