By Cars.com EditorsMay 13, 2009
About the video
Cars.com's Joe Wiesenfelder takes you through the 2008 Ford Taurus X.
Hi, I'm Joe Wiesenfelder with cars.com. I've noticed that the Ford brand has many SUV models, somewhere between a ton and a gajillion, with more to come.
Which raises the question, what is special about the Taurus X crossover? If you haven't heard of the Taurus X before, that's because it used to be named the Freestyle. The most noticeable change along with the name is to the new Ford grill with probably the largest logo we've ever seen on a car. People can debate all day whether this is an SUV, a large wagon, a crossover, it doesn't matter. Really, it's only as high as it needs to be for foul weather driving, and also to make it easy to get in and out. Aside from making it look more like an SUV, this squared-off corner gives it an advantage over its closest type competitor, the Chrysler Pacifica. It gives it more cargo volume up here behind the third row seat. The Pacifica has more of a curve to it, it has less volume. It's good to have the optional power lift gate. Though we've noticed, it's a little bit bulkier than most that you see. The strut is visible. This kind of gets in the way of the cargo area. The upside is the button to control it is right here, which is better for shorter people than the one up top on the lift gate. The third row seats are exceptionally easy to operate. All you do is grab this strap, pull the red number one, then pull number two, and you're done. To raise it, all you have to do is pull up on the latch, which keeps it secure, and it's the same thing in reverse. The driver's seat is roomy, but I'm not crazy about the seats. They're a little bit overstuffed. They should be more supportive, more firm. Now, there's also a lumbar adjustment on this car. It depends on who you are, but to me, this one feels like it has two settings too much, and even more. Now, I'm not one that pays too much attention to gaps between panels, and I don't think most shoppers do, but it's hard to not notice when it's not uniform. This is the cover for the airbag. It starts out kind of narrow back here, ends up being wider here. Now, you can actually see the latch through the crack above the glove compartment door here too. And the way this part fits isn't particularly impressive either. The second row in the Taurus X is either two seats like this or a three seat bench. The price is the same. I'm comfortable. It's pretty roomy. If I had more room, I can slide the seat forward and give more to the passengers behind me. This seat is actually really well-designed. There's one lever to bring the back rest flat, and then another to tumble it forward. Now also interesting, it's really easy to put down. For spring-loaded seats like this, oftentimes it's either hard to lift it or hard to put it back down. This one, it's fine in both directions. Now, this is how we get into the third row. Now considering my height, I'm pretty comfortable in this third row. My knees are raised a bit, but I could definitely make this work for more than just a short trip. And this back rest, remember, is all the way back. The Taurus X is one of the most space-efficient vehicles on the market. The amount of space it takes up on the outside, it gives you a lot of room on the inside. Maybe you're looking at a minivan, or you want something a little bit smaller, definitely check out the Taurus X. <v Narrator>For additional information on this car or any other, go to cars.com and our blog, KickingTires.