In 1986, I had the opportunity to drive my first Ford Taurus. It came as I rented the car for the weekend as I had tickets for a San Diego Chargers game down at Jack Murphy (now Qualcomm) Stadium and my employer’s holiday party. It was a daunting task to drive from Reseda to San Diego and back in time for the party in Woodland Hills, but I was up for a challenge. Besides, this would be the first time I would drive between two major cities.
After piling up the miles on that first trip, I was impressed with Ford’s breakthrough family sedan. Impress enough to welcome it again a couple of months later when I had to drive up to the Bay Area to retrieve some items from my late father’s estate. For the amount of travel I have done between both Northern and Southern California, a Taurus helped me achieve my first ever trip between the two areas from behind the wheel. Interstate 5 through the Central Valley can be a lonely highway, but that 1987 Taurus GL was a true traveling companion.
During these past two decades, the Ford Taurus became the car that was my ticket to adventure. I never owned a Taurus to get the full experience of the car, but I had driven more of my share of them to rack up some wonderful times behind the wheel. With the exception of the SHO, I may have driven every version of one of the best products Ford created.
The “jellybean” shape struck a chord with consumers looking for a family sedan that stood and performed admirably. On December 26, 1985, the Taurus, along with its twin the Mercury Sable, arrived at dealerships to a hungry public. In turn, they had one of the best new car introductions in Ford history selling as many Tauruses as they did in the first year of the Mustang in 1964.