Last post on Aug 22, 2008 at 10:00 PM
You are in the Ford Taurus/Mercury Sable
What is this discussion about?
Ford Five Hundred, Ford Taurus, Mercury Sable, Future Vehicle, Sedan, Wagon
#12 of 530 Re: Ford - GM [fezo]
Feb 08, 2007 (9:30 am)
It's a good move, period. They never should have dropped the names in the first place. Taurus is a known entity, 500 is not. Taurus may have baggage, but it is better to have a name in print than not. All this brings to peopel's minds again what the Taurus used to be before Ford ruined it. Besides, lots of people LIKE their 2000-2005 bland Tauri. And it remained their best seller until the day they killed it.
Sable is also more recognized (it actually used to be a force in the midsize market, if you go back enough years). I prefer Montego--it is a better "Mercury" name, but so be it. They won't sell gobs more of them with the new names, but they will sell a few more than if they had left the names as Montego.
Mullaly knew right from the beginning how stupid it was to dump an iconic name like Taurus. It is one of the top ten most recognized car names. I cannot see where this will make either model a best seller, but I cannot see any downside to this move at all. None.
It won't affect resale of 500/Montego in any appreciable way (except possibly favorably...but that is a long shot), since resale is not their strong suit anyway, being fairly unpopular models.
It may speed up the redesign of Taurus/Sable too. Even if it doesn't, it is a brilliant move. It gets the cars more notice than they would have gotten with the relatively minor 08 changes alone. Also, that the company can now clean up bad moves so quickly gives me hope.
#13 of 530 Re: Ford - GM [gregg_vw]
Feb 08, 2007 (10:05 am)
gregg, gregg, gregg. "Brilliant move"? Come on. Even Fields only called it a "Bold move". Me? I'd call it a "Bonehead move". Let's review.
The *original* Taurus was a fresh, new car that pretty much turned the family sedan on it's head. At least that's what folks say. I never liked it, but that's just MHO. The Sable of course was just a Taurus with a light bar and a name to appeal to the market that the marketers decided that Mercury (the God of Speed!) should appeal to - women.
The original Taurus went on to be leading selling family sedan. Only Camry and Accord were close. Chevy had nothing to compete for about 20 years.
Then came two redesigns, each less attractive than the one before. Sales dropped off due to that and probably also due to Consumer Reports and others saying reliability was not equal to the Japanese. Duh. Meanwhile, Camry and Accord just got better and better. Mechanical/reliable wise anyway. Looks etc is only opinion, though if one looks at the interiors in the last couple gens of CamCords, they are heads above even the present day 500Tau.
Now, Ford has a bland family sedan that noone notices, one that cant even beat a Subaru in a comparison, let alone a Camry or Accord. And they want to sell more. So what do they do - the rename it after a car that became a shadow of it's former self and most people now know the name only as the mid-priced rental at Hertz. And those that owned a Taurus - are they pining for another one? I dunno. I have only one frioend who had a Taurus - it was a wagon. She hated it becaue the brakes wore out every couple of weeks and she was always torqued that there was no inside release or even fob release for the trunk hatch. She drives an Odyssey now.
I think Ford is doomed. Sorry, that's MHO is all. The vehicles they have are second rate. The names are stupid. The marketing is pathetic. How many millions have they spent on those Edge commercials yet not one that actually shows what the car is and why people would want it, unless they have a Spiderman urge. The thing has bad brakes anyway. Wait til more comparos come out. The Edge is going to finish dead last. It already did against about 20 other crossovers.
And Ford has had ONE successful vehicle in the past, what, decade? The Fusion. SO now, EVERY freakin Ford has to look like a Fusion cause heck - the idiots are buying that one, so they'll buy this one too if it looks like that one.
Also, I must've seen 10,000 commercials for the emm kay exx and navigaotor and emm kay zee in December. And what happens - sales DROPPED.
I'm just disgusted with Ford, tell the truth. Dismayed and disgusted. And even worse, the 500 not only cant compete with Subaru, the Accord or the Camry but Chrysler has huge winner with the 300 and the Chevy Impala is actually a very very nice car these days WITH options to make it either an econo gas sipper (cant get a 500 that sips gas) OR an SS model that's a speed demon (the 500 has been woefully underpowered. The 3.5 might help a bit, but it aint gonna remind anyone of the Galaxie 500 XL.) And Chevy is going back to RWD for the Impala, which IS a brilliant move. And if they do an interior for it like they've done for the new Malibu - even CamCord buyers may notice it.
The Ford is the bottom of the heap. It's a nice, bland car with a questionable reliability future. Why anyone would buy one over the competition, whether they call it the 500 or the Taurus, is a question for the ages. Sorry, that's MHO.
#14 of 530 Name changes don't work
Feb 08, 2007 (10:29 am)
Back in the 60s the Dodge charger was a big powerful RWD car that held its own in sales. Then Mopar killed it off only to bring the name back again in the late 70s as a little FWD Dodge Charger. It never made the grade. Ford tried the same with the T Bird. It didn't even come close to the original in any important way especially sales, it hit the dust. The Mercury Maurader same thing. You just can't use a name that was popular before and roll the dice hoping it will work again. Pontiac tried to fool eveyone with the new improved ozzie GTO. Didn't come close to comparing to the original that still commands big $ today. Few cars that have new names or names resurrected that have been succesful are few. The Chevy Impala is one that carries over 50 years of equity.
Ford is not in the position to gamble that "this might work or that might work". They need to stand back and see what they are producing and start with a new business plan making exciting cars again. Now if Ford was to call the Five Hundred the Camry, or Accord they might even fool a few people and steal a few sales.
The Five Hundred name carries no equity. The Taurus name has had its day. I don't think previous Taurus consumers now want to spend thousands more on a car that no one wanted in the first place.
#15 of 530 Re: Ford - GM [heyjewel]
Feb 08, 2007 (10:36 am)
I don't disagree with much you say...except that I think this is a terrific decision for a company in deep doo-doo. It absolutely cannot hurt, and it may help. That they were able to make this change without resorting to endless clincs and fodcus groups is great. At least use names with which people are familiar. If you are not a car guy, Freestyle and 500 and Montego mean nothing.
The other thing I'd point out is that originally, there was a perceptual difference between the Taurus and Sable. The Sable did look like a step up. They did not share any body panels. The Sable had a differnet front end, hood, roofline, rear window, longer rear fenders, and more formal rear end, as well as a modified dash. Each redesign was less successful in defining a "Sable" and the final Sable, though it still had its own roofline, was mostly Taurus, made a bit longer and more ungainly looking.
I don't know if Ford will survive. I too have doubts about that. However, they will not fail because of this name change. It may help a bit, it may not, but it won't hurt them more. It is all upside to neutral, so why not?
Some people may now discover the bland 2008 things actually have some power (with the same economy), are quiet, comfortable and one of the rommiest cars you can buy. Or not. But if they don't sell any better, it won't be due to the name change.
#16 of 530 Re: Ford - GM [heyjewel]
Feb 08, 2007 (10:49 am)
Oh, one other thing...
IMHO, the 2008 Taurus looks nothing like the Fusion. Even the front end is rendered very differently. Not sure how they took the three bar look of the Fusion and managed to make it look so bland and anonymous on the Taurus. Oh well.
The Interceptor front end is what they need to do with that 3 bar look to keep it distinctive. But there isn't much of anything they can do to make the Taurus look exciting or attractive, short of a full redesign. Even the Taurus X has rendered the 3 bar look far better than that stuck on the 08 sedan.
#17 of 530 Name Change -- Gee Thanks.
Feb 08, 2007 (11:33 am)
Thank you Ford, for further devaluing this noisy, underpowered, listless, and generally mediocre 2006 Five Hundred Limited I bought 14 months ago. This move ought to knock about $2000 to $4000 off of it's trade-in value. Much obliged!
#19 of 530 Name change debacle
Feb 08, 2007 (4:42 pm)
If Ford wanted to properly revive the Taurus moniker, it should have applied the name to the car that became the Fusion back in 2005. With the combined appeal of the new design and the Taurus name, it is very likely that the new mid-size would be selling at a faster pace than it is now, especially since there have been (to my knowledge at least) no recalls or flaws with the Fusion.
Why apply a name that is synonymous with the mid-size market to the full-size scene?
#20 of 530 Re: Name change debacle [fusionfan06]
Feb 08, 2007 (5:21 pm)
If this works for Ford then perhaps GM should bring back the Aztek and call it a Trans Am APV!
Did Ford get their marketing people from a flea market?
Maybe at the NY show we'll see the revival of the Granada.
Ford, if your out there - make better cars, we don't care what their names are.
Feb 08, 2007 (6:12 pm)
New Sable has front design almost identical to Milan. But profile and rear end do not match with front end. Interior does not look elegant, I though they will fix it but they did not. Door panels look cheap – who need bottle holders in door packets? Radio and climate control look and feel cheap; steering wheel design is awkward. Car seems to be too high. It imitates old Passat but Passat had good proportions.