Ford is celebrating the return of the Taurus and Mercury SableÂ nameplates with record-setting scores in government crash safety tests. So now Ford will seek to capitalize on that moniker by marketing the TaurasÂ as the “Safest Car in America.” Am I the only one here who recalls Fords results in making similar claims back in the 1950’s?
In another similarity to the “Safety” aspect of their marketing strategy is the complaints by some that the design of the Ford Taurus/Sable (which replaces in name more than design the Ford Five-Hundred) is too bland and indistinct. Back in the mid to late ’50’s Ford opted for safety and practicality in their cars versus the performance and attitude marketed by Chevy.
The 2008 market is not necessarily being dazzled by the design of too many of either Ford or Chevy’s automobiles, so maybe the Safety aspect will win them back some of the sedan sales they gave up in retiring the Taurus a couple years ago. However, I wouldn’t be expecting a sudden boon in those sales as they face up against the stylish, redesigned Toyota Camry and the ever popular Honda Accord.
Along with the Taurus and Sable release comes the new Taurus X; formerly known as the Freestyle. While some Ford fans may beÂ celebrating the return of these familiar Ford names, and may even be calling for the return of the FordÂ Galaxy (Henry, help us!), some warning signs should be flashing. WhenÂ an automaker has more in common with Sean, P-Diddy,Diddy, SeanJean, Combs than with the rest of the auto industry…Â well that can’t be a good thing.
Only the free market will tell us if the return of the Taurus and Sable will make all the difference for Ford in the years to come. Between the lackluster styling, the familiar names and the marketing strategy of Safety, what is old is truly new again for the Ford Motor Company.
For the sake of all those employed by Ford and its subsidiaries, I truly hope there is Safety in the Taurus.