Video: Ford Pits 2010 Taurus SHO Against V-8 Powered Audi A6 4.2 FSI

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2010 Ford Taurus SHO

2010 Ford Taurus SHO

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The figures, sourced from millions of ADAC members, reveal Japanese cars have lost their edge

The figures, sourced from millions of ADAC members, reveal Japanese cars have lost their edge

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General Motors has recently nabbed a bit of the limelight with its Lutz-inspired "May the Best Car Win" campaign, complete with a challenge to best his time around Laguna Seca in a CTS-V. But GM isn't the only American car manufacturer that's looking to take on the competition in a head-to-head battle.

Ford's 2010 Taurus SHO, powered by the new EcoBoost twin-turbocharged V-6 engine, is the Blue Oval's secret weapon. It's using the car to find favorable comparisons all across the spectrum, particularly in the luxury and performance arena.

Take the 2010 Audi A6 4.2 FSI for example. Powered by a 4.2-liter V-8 engine, the German luxury sedan has a 0.7-liter advantage in displacement over the SHO's 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6, plus an additional pair of cylinders, though it's rated at 350 horsepower--15 horsepower short of the SHO.

More power and the low-end torque provided by twin turbocharging is why the Audi can't overcome the SHO's straight-line accelerative powers, as Ford points out to great effect in the video below. But Ford doesn't stop there, noting as its closing line in the video that the $37,995 base-price Taurus SHO is $20,000 cheaper than the V-8 Audi A6, which starts at $60,950.

While there's an undeniable price gap, it's worth looking a little closer at the similarities and differences between the two to see if there's really a value gap.

Both the SHO and the A6 have all-wheel drive, though the Audi quattro permanent all-wheel-drive system is likely to be rated a bit higher on the driving dynamics scale for most drivers. Likewise, while the 2010 Taurus SHO is a very nice sedan, it's not a luxury car, and this shows through in the features department, though Ford's SYNC system does an admirable job of hanging with Audi's MMI nav/entertainment suite.

Overall cabin quality is likely to come out in favor the Audi as well. TheCarConnection's full reviews indicate mixed findings on the comfort of the front seats, while the back seat gets even less praise, despite adjectives like "classy" and "premium" being tossed about with regard to the interior materials and styling. Audi's interiors, on the other hand, are frequently praised as some of the best in the business for comfort, quality and design.

Still, it's impressive that a comparison between the Audi and the Ford can even be carried on with a straight face, let alone approximately analogous feature sets in at least some areas. It's no surprise that the Taurus comes up short on an apples-to-apples comparison--it's giving up $20,000 in build price, after all--but it's impressive to see how much value can be packed into the 2010 SHO for less than $45,000.

For the full low-down on the 2010 Ford Taurus SHO, including all its foibles and successes, read the full review at TheCarConnection.

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Comments (12)
  1. I'm pretty sure the A8 is the comparable Audi to the Taurus.

  2. I'm pretty positive that the Audi that is most comparable to the Taurus is the A8, not the A6.

  3. That would imply that the Taurus is the size of a 7 series/S-class car, like the A8, which it obviously isn't.

  4. and ford finally does the taurus right. i'm beginning to think they're not so bad after all

  5. Ha, that Taurus SHO should be compared to something closer to the S4, much closer in price and size. The Audi S4 is awesome. I think it is funny how Ford is comparing cars in different classes. It should be S4 vs SHO, not A8 or A6 vs SHO.

  6. I think that the REAL competitor to the SHO is their own Lincoln MKS and anyway they should actually be comparing the MKS to all of the premium brands in order to show that Lincoln is a worthy alternative.

  7. Your missing the point here guys, so here it is. Is the V8 powered A6 really $20,000 better? Ultimatley if you can park your ego's that answer is no!

  8. The SHO is Ford's performance model right? Then they need to compare it to an S or RS model Audi. They also could give it a go against the 3.0T A6.

  9. Cody, you do realize that the A4/S4 is a bit smaller than a Fusion, right??
    The Taurus is a fullsize car, and is actually bigger than the A6.
    Kids (shaking head)

  10. New 2009 a4/s4 s are bigger than fusion. Sigh..

  11. I consider Gloria1's point to be valid, BUT Cody does have a point it's Ford's performance model Taurus. In a comparison they need to go against a brands performance model and not just the brand. Obviously, there is a lot of ammo on both sides. But you have to look at the bigger picture. Yes, bigger than an A6 maybe not as big as an A8. BUT just as they have their base model TAURUS Audi has their base A6. At a pure performance standpoint what is a good competitor? And let the chips fall where they may. As GM would say "may the best car win"!

  12. IM TIRED of people talking and talking about how US Autos just arent quality like the imports.... apparently they dont consider Ford or Cadillac or any of the competitions safety records and recalls. stop jumping on the bandwagon and give the new american cars a try :) I LOVE my Fusion ;) Im proud of Ford!!!! and the Taurus is close in size to the A6... besides you have V8 v V6...

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