How are the Taurus station wagons?

What are the 1990-1997 Taurus station wagons like as far as trouble spots?
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The engine fell out of my Dad's early 90's one....
Mike 86/00 CJ7 Laredo, 33x9.5 BFG Muds, 'glass nose to tail in '00 88 Cherokee 235 BFG AT's Canadian Off Road Trips Photos: Non members can still view! Aug./05 http://www.imagestation.com/album/index.html?id !20343242 (More Off Road album links at bottom of the view page)
Fred wrote:

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Mike Romain wrote:

The engine didn't fall out. The retainers holding the rear cradle bushings rusted and the back of the cradle dropped.
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Tom Adkins wrote:

The engine was sitting on the cradle at the time, so it too fell out....
Mike 86/00 CJ7 Laredo, 33x9.5 BFG Muds, 'glass nose to tail in '00 88 Cherokee 235 BFG AT's Canadian Off Road Trips Photos: Non members can still view! Aug./05 http://www.imagestation.com/album/index.html?id !20343242 (More Off Road album links at bottom of the view page)
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If you buy a 3.8 and with the AX4S, verify the head gaskets changed, no knocking after oil change to xw-30, ... ...and Trans rebuilt with the upgrade to steel piston.
--
Yeh, I'm a Krusty old Geezer, staving off dementia here..DEAL with it!

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On Sat, 12 Nov 2005 16:44:01 GMT, "Fred"
Where do you want to start? and when do you want to stop? 3.8 engine head gaskets and timing cover gaskets - inmost cases when they go you can pitch the engine - and the transmissions are also trouble. Early models were known for engine subframe mounting washers rusting away, litterally tetting the engine fall out.
That's just for starters.

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wrote:

spots?
Unbelievable! You know, here's one of the largest and oldest auto mfrs in the world, and they can't even design basic things like mounting hardware. I'm not picking on Ford, because nearly all the non-Japanese mfrs do the same. I mean, a stainless steel washer is only a couple of pennies more than a mild steel washer. And think of all the bad press they get because of a few bad parts.
I spend the whole day test driving Aerostars and every single one of them has that same PS whine. How many years did they make Aerostars? 9 or 10? Then, when they finally got most of the bugs out in 97, what do they do but stop making that model!!!
I know that there is a long lead time from when a problem is detected and when the change can be made, but this is ridiculous. Am I missing something here?
John
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Yeah, you are... you're dealing with subjectives. Start looking for 1992 Nissan Sentras or just just about any Nissan, in the 'rust belt.
You'd think it was a third world car and never sold much. Never mind the fact that Datsun / Nissan picked up the rep as a rust bucket way back in the early eighties.
Has Nissan finally straightened that out? We'll see.
And about the PS whine.. it's not an Aerostar problem, it's a Ford Problem because the system is not unique to that model... some do it, most dont. Why?!!!
Because of lack of maintenance, I'd bet. Could it be that the Aerostar gets sent to 'lock' position more than a car would? Or that the PS fluid cooler doesnt work as well?
All vehicles have their peccadilloes.... dont forget, if you have read the car mags, how excited those guys get with each and every new Audi model.
Have they stopped doing that because of the car's record once it gets a few years and miles on it? Dunno... I've quit reading them because I wouldnt have the slightest interest in an Audi... picture trying to fix the same kind of repeated probs we have with fords, but in a base of FAR fewer cars.
--
Yeh, I'm a Krusty old Geezer, staving off dementia here..DEAL with it!

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Backyard Mechanic wrote:

Which was the problem w/ the Taurus... they last to long too well. Our '87 was recalled for the cradle issue, it already had 200,000+ salted road Upstate NY miles & 10+ years on it. They last so long, these issues come up... which would never happen w/ a Nissan. We traded it in at 220,000 mi. w/o getting the recall work done - I left it up to the next guy. I still saw the car driving around 2 years later!
Rob
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Can I summarize for you? You want a 3.0 liter engine, which will either be a "Vulcan" pushrod engine prior to 1996, or in 1996 or newer, a 3.0 could be a "Vulcan" or the more powerful OHC "Duratec." You also want to avoid 1992 and 1993 (and maybe 1991, I can't quite remember) like the plague because they were the first years of the computer controlled transmissions and were much worse than previous or subsequent years.
There are two computerized transmissions, the AX4S (aka AXOD-E) and the AX4N. The AX4N is supposed to be the heavier duty of the two, so I'd recommend that. You can tell which is which by looking at the door placard at the transmission code. Then look up the code to see what the transmission is. Also, make sure to drive it long enough for the tranny to get up to operating temp. Some problems can be masked by colder, thick fluid.
Lastly, you're talking about cars that are 9 to 16 years old, so it's pretty much a pig in a poke. You really need to look carefully at the maintenance of the car. Preferably get receipts of oil and tranny fluid changes. Have a mechanic look it over if you're not sure what to look for.
CJB
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