05 Taurus Rental

I rented a 2005 Ford Taurus this weekend to go from Chicago to a Christmas Party near Akron Ohio. ABout a 780 mile trip.
Front Wheel Drive
3.0litre V6 seemed pretty snappy. Engine was noisey under accelration.
Handled pretty well for the most part.
Suspension didn't cushion to well on the bumps, but this could of been due to the fact it was 4 degree's out.
Wind noise was pretty well hushed & I drove through some windy area's going to Ohio via I-80.
A commanding view of the road can be seen though a rather big windsheild. The high set wiper arms block the view of the hood so parking might be a problem as you can't see the front end of the vehicle. Same for the rear, the high sweep of the back shelf prohibits seeing the trunklid.
The high mounted Automatic Dimming Mirror on the windshield was a +. I had adjusted it up right to the headliner. On the downside there is no Off switch on the mirror.
Domelight was rather dim, but had two bright reading lights built into the unit that realy flooded the interior at night. It was abit of a reach the domelight assembly is in line with the center pillar.
Another nice feature were the floodlights on the exterior mirrors that shown down when the unlock button was pressed on the key fob.
The front power split bench seat was very firm. Manual recline, no lumbar adjustment. Usually I don't drive a car with the seat lowered way down, but in this car I had to as my head or hat tended to hit the front of the headliner or low mounted sunvisors.
Another + was both backrests had road atlas pockets in them.
Angled forward headrests prohibited me from wearing a brim hat ( Indiana Jones style ).
Lift up on the center armrest and the center section of the front seat cushion flipped over to reveal a dual cup holder and storage area, 3 slots for cassettes, a molded coin holder and a slot to hold a map or a few letters you need to mail.
Back seat was very firm, rear cusshion had to much angle to be comfortable. The split folding rear seat is a joke. It doesn't lay flat over the cushion. Maybe if you had 75 pounds sticking through from the trunk it would lay flat.
The front & rear seats also sported what I refer to as " Fly Paper Cloth ". Very difficult to slide on. Even my leather coat was dragging up on the backrest.
The trunk had a flat floor, plenty of room. The trunk light is in the side trim in the RR Quarter panel. Seeing anything in the trunk at night is hard to do, the trunk trim is finished in dark charcol grey.
Inside the gauge cluster is a bit squeezed. The Tach dial is to the left, about 4 inches in diameter. The Temp & Fuel gauges an 1 1/2 dia. and are centered with the centerline of the steering column. Below the temp & fuel gauge is a digital readout info center and the gear selector band.
The digital info gives you the odometer reading, trip meter, outside air temperature, miles to empty, MPG, and for you Marines, a 24 hour time counter.
The speedometer is on the right, a 4 " dia. dial in increments of 20 ( 0, 20 , 40, 60, 80, 100, 120 ). Display at night lights up green with red neddles that are easy to see.
Certain steering wheel positions block the speedomter.
Speaking of steering wheels, this one was a hard feel, leather wrapped wheel with cruise control buttons on the side of the wheel hub.
The gauge cluster has a cruise control light, but pressing the On button doesn't trip the light, Pressing the ACC/Set button, thus setting the speed turns the cruise light on.
Power Non Heated Mirrors, medium in size, gave a good view behind you.
Oddly shaped and oddly placed Gear Shift lever hard to hold onto & hard to shift. Lever to close to the dashboard also caused your hand or knuckles to hit the radio buttons, especiallly gloved hands.
The non illuminated headlight switch & domelight switch are hidden behind the steering wheel on the left side of the dash making it hard to see and reach, especially at night. The power windows and door lock switches lit up, the mirror control switch did not.
The black Power Trunk release button is recessed into the lower left of the dash and very hard to see.
The power seat moved far enough back, but a poorly shaped floor pan design and left foot rest prohibit you from stretching out the left leg. I could not get my foot to go between the foot rest riser and the brake pedal.
The radio and climate controls could of been set a little higher up. Radio has too many push buttons to control each command. On the plus side you can see both the Digital clock readout and Radio station display at once. Simple H and M buttons ( hour & minutes ) to reset the clock.
AM - FM single slot CD player with four speakers sounded good. There is a slot under the heater controls possibly for a CD changer, storage bin other wise. Would hold 1 CD ( in its box ) fine, thanks to rubber skid mat in the bottom of the slot, With 2 CD's the upper one tends to slide out while driving, 3 can be jammed in.
A small pull out ashtray is at the bottom of the dash
The Manal Climate Control system worked well, except the Defroster for the windsheild. Needs more output to cover the large windshield. Heat could be had out the vents and at the floor at once. 3 simple round twist knobs controled the fan speed, temperature settings and selector modes.
Glove Box didn't have much in the line of room for items.
The door panels had what I refer to as the " Elbow Off " door sills. The top of the door panel tapers down and isn't wide enough to comfortably rest your arm on top of the doorsill. Awkward to reach with a lowered seat setting.
I also found that armrests on the door panels also had a slight taper, causing your arm to slide off. The width of the armrest taper off the closer you get back to the center pillar.
The door map pockets were about 9 -10 inches long. Speaker in the door prohibts them from being full legnth. Access to the pockets was hard because of the armrest sticking out right above, so you had to contort your hand to get down there. My sunglasses just made it into the pocket. The width is about 3 CD boxes thick.
The carpet didn't lay flat across the front of the floor and had some bubble areas around the center hump.
Rear window defroster didn't seem to clear off the snow / ice. I think this is due to the angle of the glass. Water droplets tended to just stay there instead of rolling off. I also found this to be true of the 04 Toyota Camry
Nothing like a near verticle back glass.
No DRL's or Automatic Headlights another plus.
Another plus was I wasn't killed when I slid off into the ditch at 60 mph in Portage Co. Indiana. Luckily the ditch flattened out and I was able to drive it out onto the oncoming side.
Harryface
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I always enjoy your car reviews Harryface! Glad you weren't hurt when you slid into the ditch!
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Yeah Harry, you should be working for consumer reports or something. I learn more about various car models reading your reports than anywhere else.
Brian
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I agree. Harryface's reviews have that "regular Joe" quality to it that adds to the value to the "report".
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Totally agree
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Harry Face, first of all, you have our sympathies for having to drive any Ford product other than a " 'Stang". Secondly, I am the owner of your car rental agency and you are hereby banned for life from renting from us. Those cow-paddies on the undercarriage gave away your off-road excursion. <grin>
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Hey Stingray! What is your impression of the new 05 "Stang". Haven't seen one up close yet, but looks sweet from afar! The retro "legacy" design queues make it recognizable from every angle.
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Hey James! I haven't driven the new Stang yet, but I've seen a few on the road and they look and sound sweet. At risk of aging myself, I love the retro look, circa '69. Actually, I just read a road test report on them, entitled "Mustang offers bang for the buck" that claimed the 300 H.P. GT model "beat out the likes of Corvette" but, unfortunately, they didn't elaborate on whether it was a slalom course, straight line, road course, etc. It was most likely more of a purely subjective but unqualified comment from someone who hasn't driven both vehicles. From what I've read about both cars, I think that it would be highly unlikely that the Mustang GT would beat the C6 Corvette in any performance category. But at its list price, I think the Mustang does offer a lot of bang for the buck and is one of the best buys on the market. I'd buy one. In fact, I might. I'm going to wait awhile though, because I've hear rumors of a 400 h.p. Shelby model for either late 2005 or 2006.
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Sounds pretty good for a car one can buy for under 16K. You must have a lot of time on your hands to evaluate a rental then post your finding in a NG. Sliding off a wet or icy road is about par for a FWD car. ;)
mike hunt
Harry Face wrote:

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