All photos by Ford
The Taurus SHO is back in a rebirth that brings serious power back to Ford's flagship sedan. The 2011 Ford Taurus SHO AWD has an unassuming exterior but delivers impressive horsepower under the hood.
According to Ford, "A key element of the authentic SHO formula is the subtlety of its unique exterior design cues. Features include sporty premium painted wheels wrapped in standard low-profile 19-inch Goodyear Eagle or optional 20-inch Michelin high-performance tires, a deck lid-mounted spoiler and twin chrome exhaust tips. The car also features a uniquely finished interpretation of the Ford signature three-bar grille with SHO-specific parking lamp bezels". Our test model also boasted HID projector headlamps, supplemental park lamps with security approach lamps, securicode keyless entry and dual exhaust with chrome tips. Several folks that checked out the sterling gray metallic test car were surprised to learn it was a Taurus. Many were also impressed with the sporty look of the SHO even though it doesn’t stand out from the base Taurus or the Taurus Limited.
The interior of the 2011 Taurus SHO AWD has the size of a full size sedan with the accents of a sports car. Our model included charcoal black leather seating, 10-way power driver and passenger seats with lumbar and driver memory, Sony premium 12-speaker sound system, Sirius satellite system, SYNC voice activated system, dual electronic temperature control, tilt and telescoping leather-wrapped steering wheel, ambient lighting, aluminum interior accents, aluminum gas and brake pedals, heated and cooled front seats, power moonroof, heated rear seats, rear window power sunshade and voice-activated navigation system. The leather trimmed seats with Miko suede inserts are made with recycled post-consumer yarns from plastic soft drink bottles and are comfortable and luxurious. When you add excellent trunk space to the feature list, the 2011 Taurus SHO AWD leaves little to be desired.
The performance is what really separates the 2011 Taurus SHO AWD from other full-size sedans. SHO stands for Super High Output which comes from a twin turbocharged 3.5-liter Eco Boost V6 pumping 365 horsepower at 5,500 rpm and 350 lb-ft of torque between 1,500 and 5,250 rpm. That power is delivered in a smooth and bold fashion with fuel economy of 17 mpg city and 25 mpg highway which should put a smile on any face. The ride in the 2011 Taurus SHO AWD will also delight those who don't want to sacrifice comfort for a performance vehicle. The six-speed transmission worked well with the paddle shifter on the steering wheel and the AWD system played a key role in the big Taurus handling tight corners with confidence.
When Ford decided to bring back the Taurus SHO, we wondered if the magic of a high performance sedan could survive the gas prices of today. Ford's 365 horsepower Eco Boost engine delivered the power and economy necessary to keep the SHO brand alive. Pricing comes in around $45,000, which will take plenty of shoppers out of the running. The SHO was never intended for everyone but rather for those who thrive on sport and speed. Many might underestimate the 2011 Taurus SHO AWD at first glance but after getting behind the wheel or coming along for a ride there is no doubt this car lives up to its name.
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